When: August 11-28, 2013
Where: Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia
Darwin may be the northernmost frontier of Australia, but it has its share of eager travelers and tourists who want to experience the tropical climate and laidback atmosphere of the city that is undecidedly Australian, unlike other more urbanized cities of Sydney, Perth and Melbourne.
The Darwin Festival (August) began as Bougainvillea Festival in 1978 to rally the Darwin residents to bounce back after the devastation of Cyclone Tracy. (Incidentally, another festival, the Darwin Beer Festival, sprang up after the cyclone when the city waste managers decided to recycle beer cans that have been pooled together by the cyclone).
The festival changed to its present name in 2003, and has since attracted not only the support of the local community and government, but also of the mainstream tourists numbering 100,000 as of last count. Considering that Darwin is rarely on the travelers’ map when thinking of going to Australia, this feat is by no means modest.
About the Event
The Northern Territory is not exactly an Australian cultural hotspot. Darwin sprang up as the transport hub of tankers and cargoes and passengers heading Southeast Asia, but thanks to its balmy climate and laidback way of life, it has attracted a modest share of immigrant population. The local government and organizers would like to express this mélange of cultural diversity through arts, and the Darwin Festival (August) is the realization of this goal. Theater, music, cabaret, dance, comedy, visual arts, film and debates will be held from August 11 to August 28, 2013 in various venues in Darwin. “Hot August Nights” is indeed an appropriate moniker to the Darwin Festival, referring not only to the tropical temperatures that will enable performances outdoors, but to the world-renowned performances that promise to delight the young and old.
Unlike the busier cities of the ‘lower territories’ (Queensland, New South Wales and Southern Australia), Darwin is slower in general tempo and more backpacker friendly. Accommodation is offered not only by hotels, but also by households who may have a spare couch for the night. The best way to find out is to inquire once you get there. There are also exchanges done online, although a walk-in approach may be more reliable than reservations on the Internet.
The Darwin Festival (August) is the region’s most colorful expression of their identity as a ‘tropical’ city in the land down under. The festival is an excellent opportunity for travelers who would want to experience a more multi-faceted city that hides its true colors and beauty on ‘regular’ days. Going to Darwin on this occasion is like going out on a first date with someone who is ‘normal’ on all appearances, but who shines and glows when dressed up on important events.
Category: Australia Festivals