Northern Territory

The Northern Territory is an Australianterritory in central and central Northern Australia. It borders Western Australia at meridian 129 E to the west, south Australia on the 26 S parallel to the south, and Queensland at meridian 138 E to the east. To the north, the territory overlooks the Timor Sea, the Arafura Sea and the Gulf of Carpentaria, including Western New Guinea and other islands of Indonesia. The Northern Territory covers an area of 1,349,129 square kilometres, making it australia’s 3rd federal division and the 11th largest national subdivision in the world. It is sparsely populated, with a population of just 245,800, less than half the population of the state of Tasmania.

The archaeological history of the Northern Territory begins more than years ago, when Indigenous Australians settled in the region. Indonesian merchants began negotiating with the indigenous peoples of the Northern Territory at least from the 18th century onto the coast of the territory, the coast of the territory was first seen by Europeans in the 17th century. After three failed attempts to establish a settlement, success was achieved in 1869 with the establishment of a settlement in Port Darwin. Today, the economy is based on tourism, especially in Kakadu National Park in the Top End, and Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park in Central Australia, and mining.

The capital and largest city of the territory is Darwin. The population is mainly concentrated in coastal regions and along the Stuart Highway. The other major urban centers are Palmerston, Alice Springs, Katherine, Nhulunbuy and Tennant Creek. Residents of the Northern Territory are often known for equivalent words in Portuguese such as “territorianos” and “North-Territorianos”, or more informally as “top enders” and “Centralians”.


Indigenous Australians have lived in the present-day Northern Territory for at least 65,000 years, and there were extensive seasonal trade relationships between them and the peoples of what is now Indonesia for at least five centuries.

With the arrival of the British, there were four initial attempts to settle in the hostile environment of the north coast, three of which failed due to hunger and despair. The land now occupied by the Northern Territory was part of the Colony of New South Wales from 1825 to 1863, except for a brief period from February to December 1846, when it was part of the short-lived colony called Northern Australia. The Northern Territory was part of South Australia from 1863 to 1911. Under the administration of the Colony of South Australia, the terrestrial telegraph was built between 1870 and 1872.

Since its inception in 1869, Port Darwin has been the main center of the territory for many decades.

A railroad was built between Palmerston and Pine Creek between 1883 and 1889. The economic pattern of cattle raising and mining was established, so that in 1911 there were 513 000 cattle. Victoria River Downs was once the largest cattle station in the world. Gold was found in Grove Hill in 1872 and in Pine Creek, Brocks Creek, Burundi, and copper was found in Daly River.

On January 1, 1911, a decade after federation, the Northern Territory was separated from South Australia and transferred to federal control. Alfred Deakin opined at this point: “For me, the issue is not so much commercial as national, first, second, third and last. Or we must carry out the settlement of the Northern Territory or submit to its transfer to another nation.”

In late 1912, there was a growing feeling that the name “Northern Territory” was unsatisfactory. The names “Kingsland” (named after King George V and to correspond to Queensland), “Centralia” and “Territoria” were proposed, with “Kingsland” becoming the preferred choice in 1913. However, the name change was never carried forward.

For a brief period between 1927 and 1931, the Northern Territory was divided into Northern Australia and Central Australia in the 20th parallel of the southern latitude. Soon after this period, parts of the Northern Territory were considered in the Kimberley Plan as a possible place for the establishment of a Jewish homeland, understandably considered the “Unpromised Land”.

During World War II, most of the Top End was placed under military rule. It is the only time since the federation that part of an Australian state or territory has been under military control. After the war, control of the entire area was returned to the Commonwealth of Australia. Darwin’s bombing took place on February 19, 1942. It was the largest individual attack ever carried out by a foreign power in Australia. Evidence of the history of World War II in Darwin is found at various preserved sites in and around the city, including ammunition depots, airstrips, oil tunnels and museums. The port of Darwin was damaged in the Japanese air strikes of 1942, and later rebuilt.

In the late 1960s, improved roads in neighboring states linked to the territory, delays in ports and rapid economic development led to uncertainty in the development of port and regional infrastructure. As a result of the Committee of Inquiry set up by the Territory Administrator, the provisions of port work were amended, investment in the deferred wharf and a port master plan was prepared. The extension of rail transport was not considered because of the low volume of freight.

Indigenous Australians had fought for rights to fair wages and land. An important event in this fight was the strike and the departure of the Gurindji people at Wave Hill Cattle Station in 1966. The federal government of Gough Whitlam set up the Woodward Royal Commission in February 1973, which sought to investigate how land rights could be achieved in the Northern Territory. Judge Woodward’s first report in July 1973 recommended the creation of a Central Land Council and a Northern Earth Council to present to him the views of aboriginal peoples. In response to the Royal Commission report, an Earth Rights Act was drafted, but the Whitlam government was dismissed before the law was passed.

The Aboriginal Land Rights Act of 1976 was eventually passed by the Fraser government on December 16, 1976 and began operating on January 26, 1977.

In 1974, between Christmas Eve and Christmas, Darwin was devastated by Cyclone Tracy. Cyclone Tracy killed 71 people, caused A$837 million in damage, or approximately A$6.85 billion (worth the Australian dollar in 2018), and destroyed more than 70% of Darwin’s buildings, including 80% of homes. Tracy left more than 41,000 of the city’s 47,000 homeless. The city was rebuilt with much improved construction technologies and today is a modern and landscaped metropolis.

In 1978, the territory received a responsible government, with a Legislative Assembly headed by a chief minister. The territory also publishes official notices in its own Government Gazette. The administrator of the Northern Territory is an officer who acts as the Queen’s indirect representative in the territory.

Between 1995 and 1996, the Northern Territory was briefly one of the few places in the world to allow legal voluntary euthanasia until the Federal Parliament repealed the legislation. Before the enactment of the law, four people would use the law supported by Dr. Philip Nitschke.


There are many small settlements scattered throughout the territory, but the largest population centres are located on the only paved road connecting Darwin to South Australia, the Stuart Highway, known to locals simply as “the track”.

The Northern Territory is home to two spectacular natural rock formations, Uluru (Ayers Rock) and Kata Tjuta (The Olgas), which are sacred to local Aboriginal peoples and have become the main tourist attractions.

In the northern part of the territory lies Kakadu National Park, which boasts extensive wetlands and native wildlife. To the north of this lies the Arafura Sea, and to the east is the Land of Arnhem, whose regional center is Maningrida, in the Liverpool River delta. There are an extensive series of river systems in the Northern Territory. These rivers include: the Alligator, Daly, Finke, McArthur River, Roper River, Todd River, and Victoria River. The Hay River is a river located southwest of the town of Alice Springs, with the Marshall, Arthur Creek, Camel Creek and Bore Creek rivers flowing into it.

National parks

  • Arnhem Land (restricted area)
  • Barranyi National Park
  • Casuarina Coastal Reserve
  • Daly River Natural Park
  • Karlu Karlu/Devils Marbles Conservation Reserve
  • Djukbinj National Park
  • Dulcie Mountains National Park
  • Elsey National Park
  • Finke Gorge National Park
  • Judbarra National Park
  • Garig Gunak Barlu National Park
  • Howard Springs Natural Park Conservation Reserve
  • Iytwelepenty National Park/Davenport Mountains
  • Kakadu National Park
  • Keep River National Park
  • Litchfield National Park
  • Mary River Conservation Crossing Reserve of mary river national park
  • Elsey National Park
  • Nitmiluk National Park
  • Palm Valley
  • Tanami Desert
  • The Olgas
  • Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park
  • Watarrka National Park (including Kings Canyon)
  • MacDonnell West National Park

Aboriginal land councils

Aboriginal land councils in the Northern Territory are groups of Aboriginal landowners, created under the Aboriginal Land Rights Act 1976.

Political parties

The two dominant political parties in the Northern Territory are the Conservative Australian Liberal Party (CLP) and the Australian Labour Party, social democrat. The smaller parties that also operate in the territory are the Northern Territory Greens, the United Party of Austráli…Text obtained from Wikipedia– Northern Territory under license CC-BY-SA-3.0 el 30 July 2021

Darwin (Territory capital)
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x