Military buffs will surely enjoy this tour that visits three heritage sights that cover a significant period in the military past of Darwin. This tropical town played a pivotal role in the fight against the Japanese during World War II, as the Territory airfields were used to carry out bombing and anti-intruder operations. These sorties constantly harassed the enemy, destroyed their infrastructure and their morale, but also made Darwin a constant target for retaliatory bombings.
Your first stop is at East Point for some panoramic photos of Darwin Harbour. Adjacent to this vantage point is the extensive East Point Military Museum. The Museum was originally set-up as an artillery museum by the Royal Australian Artillery Association to exhibit photographs and artifacts from Darwin's war time history, including the bombing of Darwin by the Japanese during World War II. In a series of sixty-four raids conducted on Darwin over a nearly two year period, over three hundred people lost their lives.
Leaving East Point behind, you'll next travel to the Australian Aviation Heritage Centre, which is one of the major aviation museums in Australia. The museum features an impressive presentation of aircraft and displays depicting the Northern Territory's involvement in aviation, both civil and military. The exhibits span from the early pioneers and record breakers - through World War II and the jet age of Vulcan's, Concorde and other exotic aircraft. One of the most awesome displays is a B52 Bomber, one of only two complete aircraft of its type on display outside the United States. Additionally, you'll find the B-25 Mitchell, Mirage and Sabre jet fighters, an ex-Royal Australian Navy Wessex helicopter, an ex-US Army Huey Cobra with its rocket pods and Gatling gun, a Mark VIII Spitfire replica and the fascinating wreckage of a Japanese Mitsubishi Zero fighter. Aviation aficionados will no doubt thoroughly enjoy this visit.
Filled with perhaps a new sense of appreciation for the role Darwin played during the war, you'll re-join your coach and be transferred back to the pier.
Please note: This tour contains a moderate amount of walking and is available to guests who utilize a wheelchair and those with mobility concerns who are able to make their way on and off the coach. Comfortable walking shoes, a sun hat and sun glasses are recommended. Exhibits are constantly being upgraded and added therefore some exhibits may be removed or changed. The order of sights visited may vary and the itinerary may be reversed. The Aviation Heritage Centre is not air-conditioned. This tour does not operate with a separate guide, but rather with a driver/guide.