Jatbula 
 Walk

Purple Orange Grass

 

 

Jatbula Walk Logo

 

In partnership with local traditional owners – the Jawoyn Association, Iconic Walks is honoured to be able to share an awe-inspiring walking experience along the iconic Jatbula Trail. Commencing at Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge in the Northern Territory, the Jatbula Walk is a captivating 62 km journey that unfolds through the breathtaking ancient terrain of Nitmiluk National Park, tracing the route travelled by generations of Jawoyn people from the gateway of Nitmiluk ( Katherine ) Gorge to Leliyn (Edith Falls).

Traversing the western edge of the Arnhem Land Escarpment, the Jatbula Walk leads through diverse, otherworldly landscapes including sandstone plateaus, scrubland, woodlands, open forests, sandstone monsoon forests, and riverine scenery. With the warm climate in mind, we set out early each day and pause for lunch at our exclusive, fully-catered camps, and later in the afternoons unwind at nearby waterholes and crystalline springs.

 

Worayang (walkabout) Pty Ltd is the collaborative partnership between the traditional owners of Nitmiluk National Park, Jawoyn Association Aboriginal Corporation, with oversight of Jawoyn elders and Iconic Walks Worayang Pty Ltd is majority owned by the Jawoyn Association. Working alongside each other to achieve the Jawoyn Association’s goal of sharing their country in ways that benefit the Jawoyn people, and at the same time take care of their land for future generations.

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Welcome to the place of the Cicada dreaming.

 

The Cicada has great significance to the Jawoyn people. In the Jawoyn language, Nitmiluk - the name given to Katherine Gorge - means "Cicada Country".

In Jawoyn legend, throughout this diverse country there are many areas that were named by Nabilil, a dragon-like figure, who came from the west. Upon entering Nitmiluk (Katherine) Gorge, he heard the song of the Cicada and called the place Nitmiluk after the "nit, nit, nit" sound the Cicada creates.

It is here we begin our journey, following an ancient Jawoyn song line through Nitmiluk National Park, where our knowledgeable guides lead us up onto the Arnhem Land Escarpment. Along the way, we traverse shady monsoon forests, encounter breathtaking waterfalls cascading into crystal-clear swimming pools, and explore remarkable Jawoyn Aboriginal rock art sites. Our well-appointed private camps are set in some of the most awe-inspiring landscapes Australia has to offer.

Don’t forget to keep an eye, or ear, out for the Garrak (Forest red-tailed black cockatoo).

The Jatbula Trail is accessible for a limited number of walkers exclusively during the dry season from June to September. This time around, Malapparr and bordering on Jungalk (cooler and driest months) are often blessed with perfect blue skies, and the perfect temperatures to unwind with an afternoon dip in one of the many magical swimming spots.

The Jatbula Walk spans 62 km along the Jatbula Trail, offering a moderately challenging bushwalk that takes us far from city life and fully immerses us in the ancient terrain where few have been. We welcome guests on our fully guided and catered walks, to share in small groups, the country of the Jawoyn people and the opportunity to experience an unsurpassed connection with nature.

 

 

Jatbula Walk Location Map

Jatbula Walk at a glance

Location: Nitmiluk National Park, Northern Territory, AUSTRALIA 
Style: Private, fully guided
Duration: 6 Days / 5 Nights
Walking: 62 kms walking on the Jatbula Trail
Grade: Moderately challenging
Group size: 6-12guests
Accommodation: Private camps
Price: From AUS $4,795pp

 

Jatbula Walk Map

 

 

Your trip itinerary

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Inclusions

A one time entry pass to Nitmiluk National Park is included.

On the first night of the Jatbula Walk we enjoy our first dinner together exploring Nitmiluk Gorge by boat on the Nabilil Dream Sunset Dinner Tour.  This amazing introduction to the Gorge environment includes: Two gorge cruise experience, 3 course meal cooked onboard the boat, glass of sparkling wine, drinking water onboard and a selection of beer, wine and soft drinks.

 

This experience begins and ends at the Travelodge Mirambeena Resort Darwin (64 Cavenagh St).  You need to meet our team at 7am for a pre-departure briefing on the morning of your departure.  You will then travel to Katherine by bus. On completion of your Walk the bus will meet the team at Leliyn (with a tasty picnic lunch) and transfer back to Darwin usually by 5pm.

 

 

Iconic Walks provides lightweight 40L backpacks for you to use during your walk. The lighter your pack the more enjoyable your experience so please consult our packing list for a detailed checklist of items to bring with you.

Jawoyn Cultural Experience and welcome by Jawoyn Traditional Owners before commencing the walk.

Walking the Jatbula Trail with us will be awesome!  If you've done other multi-day walks in Australia you'll be used to our style of experience however the Jatbula is like no other walk in Australia.  The combination of unique outback terrain, strong cultural connection with Traditional Owners and sublime springs and waterholes makes this an experience like no other.

The Jatbula Walk always has a minimum of 2 experienced guides leading your group. Our guides will share their extensive environmental and cultural knowledge ensure you have an amazing experience.

5 nights of accomodation in comfortable twin share safari style tents are included in this experience.  We provide lightweight sheets and a pillow case that you carry for your use at each camp.

Questions we often get asked

We require a minimum of 6 walkers to run a trip.  We have a maximum group size of 12 walkers per trip.

To complete the Jatbula Walk a moderate level of fitness is required. The trail is not difficult but the heat does make it more challenging. The advantage of the warm weather is you do not need to carry a heavy pack full of warm clothes! You must be comfortable walking moderate distances each day. The longest days are just over 15kms long. If you are ensure about your level of fitness or ability please contact our reservations team as we're always happy to chat.

If you wish to cancel your booking, you must notify us in writing as soon as possible. 

The date of cancellation is the date that we receive written notice of the cancellation; and if the cancellation is made:

  • More than 90 days from the scheduled departure date, a fee of $350 per person will be charged with the balance payment refunded to you;
  • Between 90 and 60 days prior to departure, you will be charged 50% of the full walk cost with the balance refunded to you; or
  • Within 60 days of departure, no refund is available.

You may check availability, and make a booking through our website, or by calling or emailing our reservations team. A deposit of $500 is required to confirm your booking.

Once your booking has been made, you’ll receive a booking confirmation email and you’ll be asked to complete your guest information via our online portal. All guests travelling who are aged 18 or over must complete this information themselves. For all guests aged 17 or under, the information must be completed by a parent or legal guardian.

Each campsite on the Jatbula Walk has 6 guest tents with 2 beds per tent. Single travelers share a tent on a twin share basis.  If you wish to have a tent to yourself, a single supplement may be available on request. Please consult our reservations team.

You can view our Terms and Conditions here.... to come

Iconic Walks provides lightweight 40L backpacks for you to use during your walk. The lighter your pack the more enjoyable your experience so please consult our packing list for a detailed checklist of items to bring with you. Your guides will help you pack at your pre-trip briefing.  Your travel luggage can be kept in storage at the hotel in Darwin.

Due to our desire to minimise the environmental impact of the campsites we have 6 tents designed to house 12 guests on a twin share basis. However, a Single Supplement may be available for solo travellers who wish to have a tent to themselves.  Please contact our reservations team to check single supplment availability.

We supply comfortable One Planet 40L day packs for you use and we provide a packing list in advance to help you to decide what to bring. Our guides will help you pack at the pre-departure meeting in Darwin. Your pack should weigh between 7 and 9kg (including starting each day with 3L of water). 

Due to the remote nature of this walking experience we strongly recommend that you  purchase travel insurance that includes cover for helicopter evacuation.  For Australian citizens, an emergency evacuation may be covered under your State's ambulance cover but non-emergency evacuation is unlikely to be covered. Also consider ensuring you have cover for flight delays, cancellation, illness, luggage loss etc.  Please review our Terms and Conditions for more information.

The Jatbula Walk does not include flights to and from Darwin, accomodation before or after your Walk, travel insurance, items of a personal nature or personal clothing. Please review our packing list for what to bring with you.

We walk the Jatbula Trail in the coolest and driest time of the year in the Northern Territory from 1 June through 30 September. Temperatures range from above 30 degrees during the day to as low as 10 degrees over night.  To account for warm weather we start walking very early each day and plan to arrive in camp before the heat of the afternoon.

 

The Jatbula Walk does not have reliable phone coverage or wifi connectivity.  At Iconic Walks, we are huge fans of the digital detox and highly recommending switching your phone to airplane mode to conserve batteres so you can take plenty of photos along the way.  Our guides carry satellite phones and PLBs for emergency use.

Trip 
Departures

Sat 07 June
Fri 13 June
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Mon 09 June
Sun 15 June
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Sun 15 June
Sat 21 June
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Tue 17 June
Mon 23 June
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Mon 23 June
Sun 29 June
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Wed 25 June
Tue 01 July
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Fri 27 June
Thu 03 July
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP

Tue 01 July
Mon 07 July
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Thu 03 July
Wed 09 July
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Sat 05 July
Fri 11 July
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Fri 11 July
Thu 17 July
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Sun 13 July
Sat 19 July
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Tue 15 July
Mon 21 July
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Sat 19 July
Fri 25 July
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Mon 21 July
Sun 27 July
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Wed 23 July
Tue 29 July
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Sun 27 July
Sat 02 Aug
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Tue 29 July
Mon 04 Aug
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Thu 31 July
Wed 06 Aug
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP

Sat 02 Aug
Fri 08 Aug
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Wed 06 Aug
Tue 12 Aug
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Fri 08 Aug
Thu 14 Aug
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Sun 10 Aug
Sat 16 Aug
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Thu 14 Aug
Wed 20 Aug
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Sat 16 Aug
Fri 22 Aug
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Mon 18 Aug
Sun 24 Aug
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Wed 20 Aug
Tue 26 Aug
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Sun 24 Aug
Sat 30 Aug
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Tue 26 Aug
Mon 01 Sept
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Thu 28 Aug
Wed 03 Sept
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP

Mon 01 Sept
Sun 07 Sept
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Wed 03 Sept
Tue 09 Sept
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Fri 05 Sept
Thu 11 Sept
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Sun 07 Sept
Sat 13 Sept
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Thu 11 Sept
Wed 17 Sept
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Sat 13 Sept
Fri 19 Sept
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Mon 15 Sept
Sun 21 Sept
6 days
Available
From $4,795 PP
Sun 21 Sept
Sat 27 Sept
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP
Tue 23 Sept
Mon 29 Sept
6 days
On Request
From $4,795 PP

Jawoyn is recognised among Aboriginal peoples over a large area of the Northern Territory’s ‘Top End’. It is an all-encompassing expression used in reference to language, culture, people and territory.

With 17 clans making up the group, The Jawoyn Association forms a positive role model for similar organisations to follow