Northern Territory is an adventure that will excite your senses, give you and your family a lifestyle and memories that will last a lifetime. Living in Katherine or the RAAF base at Tindal you have access to the whole of the NT. From the world famous Kakadu and Lichfield Park, JimJim Falls and Edith Falls. And of course if you take a drive north dive into the history of the Pine Creek gold rush, the Adelaide River war cemetery and the big city lights of Darwin just 3 hours drive north. Check out the video below or dive deeper into the Visit Katherine website.
The town of Katherine is the fourth largest in the Northern Territory, situated 320 kilometres south-east of Darwin on the beautiful Katherine River.
Katherine is often called the ‘Crossroads of the North’ as it is located on the junction of the Stuart Highway linking with the north and south and the Victoria Highway to Western Australia.
With a population of close to 10,000 people it is a thriving regional centre to an area as big as the state of Victoria, providing services to communities from the WA border to the Gulf of the NT.
Katherine boasts a modern shopping complex, new tourist information centre, boutique shopping, a cinema, modern motels, hotels, restaurants and café’s.
The town is a central base for all the major government providers including a modern hospital and air medical service, and Katherine School of the Air, also known as the World’s Largest Schoolroom!
There are two sport and recreation facilities, the Katherine Sports Ground and Aquatic Centre and the Katherine Showgrounds Complex that are the focus area for a wide variety of sports activities all year.
The abundant fresh water from the Katherine River made the area lush and plentiful. Aboriginal people have lived and hunted around Katherine for over 30,000 years.
Then in 1862 the tough wiley explorer John McDouall Stuart coming up from dry parched centre of Australia found the river. A welcome sight after months of dry arid desert. Stuart named it after the daughter of one of his sponsors, James Chambers.
The town of Katherine has had several locations since the days of the crossing of the Katherine River at Knott’s Crossing, made famous in Mrs Jeannie Gunn’s novel, ‘We of the Never Never’.
The overland telegraph and original post office were sited above Knott’s Crossing, adjacent to the ‘Sportsman’s Arms Hotel’. It had an overland telegraph quarters and single room Police Station.
With the completion of the railway bridge in 1926, the present site of Katherine, on the south-eastern side of the river, was gazetted on 15th July, 1926. The new area was presumed to be less flood prone. This assumption was tested
Katherine situated on the banks of the beautiful Katherine River has a history of flooding and suffered a flood in 1957 and flooding of the Main Street area in 1974.
Then came the big 1998 Australia Day Flood that devastated the town and it was declared a National Disaster. Cyclone Les produced 400 millimetres of rainfall upstream during a 48 hour period. The Katherine River rose overnight to 21.3 metres causing the evacuation of two thirds of the community and major devastation to the business community. Katherine East sits on the higher ground and escaped the flooding. Undaunted the town rebounded back to the thriving crossroads town it is today.