Cobourg Peninsula Tourism & Travel
Cobourg Peninsula Australia
The Cobourg Peninsula is the thin peninsula, curving west into the Arafura Sea from the north coast of Arnhem Land towards the Tiwi Islands. Located some 570 km northeast of Darwin, the Cobourg Peninsula is situated at the very Top End of Australia in the Northern Territory.
Cobourg Peninsula - Aboriginal History
Through their cultural traditions, Aboriginal people maintain their connection to their ancestral lands and waters in this remote part of Australia. This is the country of the Agalda, Madjunbalmi, Muran and Ngaindjagar Aboriginal people who have lived in this fertile country for more than 40,000 years, and continue to live and practice traditional hunting and fishing. From about the 1720's, Aboriginal people of the Cobourg Peninsula traded with the Macassan people from Sulawesi in the Dutch East Indies East Indonesia: Pearl shell, turtle shell, shark fins and trepang sea slugs were traded annually.
Cobourg Peninsula - History
Ludwig Leichhardt was the first European to reach the Cobourg Peninsula by land in1845 after beginning his exploration of the harsh hinterland across from Morton Bay in 1844. Port Essington was the site of an unsuccessful early attempt by the British to claim Australia's northern coast before French and Dutch explorers. The Cobourg Peninsula was named after the German uncle of Queen Victoria, the Prince of Saxe-Cobourg. The British Port Victoria settlement here lasted only some eleven years with settlers dying or giving up on the isolation and harsh conditions. These ruins are located 300 km north of Darwin, which was successfully settled by the British some 20 years later. In 1974 The Garig Gunak Barlu National Park was the first wetland to be recognized under the landmark 1971 International Ramsar Convention held to identify wetland sites of worldwide importance.
Cobourg Peninsula - Attractions
The northern coastal habitat of the Cobourg Peninsula is wonderfully preserved; a patchwork of pristine sandy beaches, dunes and coastal grasslands and rainforest; mangrove swamps, lagoons, coral reefs, sea grass meadows. The traditional owners have historically conserved the rich marine life; saltwater crocodiles and the world's biggest concentration of marine turtles 6 species and dugong inhabit the area in profusion. On land, see wild cattle, banteng, which originated in Indonesia, agile wallaby and dingo. The Cobourg peninsula is Aboriginal land. A permit is required to travel in Arnhem Land and this can take up to two weeks to finalise.