Touring Darwin Hop-On Hop-Off Style

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Our second day in Darwin, we started off on a hop-on, hop-off bus to get an overview of the city. Darwin has a population of 120,000, which is around half the population of the entire Northern Territory. Compared to the population of Manila, which sits at around 13 million, that number is tiny.

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The bus stops at the Cullen Bay Marina, Crocosaurus Cove, and the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory among others, but we hopped off at the Darwin Waterfront, for something a little less cultural, but a lot more fun – the Wave Lagoon at the Darwin Waterfront.

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After taking pictures and filming for my Youtuber sister, we ran to the pool with our feet burning from the scorching pebbled ground, picked up an inflatable ring each, and charged towards the water.

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The waves came on for 20 minutes straight, before stopping for 10 minutes and repeating the cycle again. Most of the time, my younger brother, sister, and I were off towards the end of the pool right where the waves came out, digging our arms through the water to ride the crest, rising and falling with the tide.

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We had some lunch at The Oyster Bar after, right by the waterfront. We ordered fish & chips, salmon bruschetta, Greek salad, and of course, oysters. I had just finished eating my second oyster when I noticed something long and furry at the bottom of the shell. It started to unfurl itself and squirmed around before I realized it was a sea worm.

I showed it to my family, who freaked out. We called the waitress over who said that it was harmless and “a sign that the oyster is very fresh.” (Right.) I wasn’t terribly bothered by the experience – I like oysters and they still taste good – but it did bother my dad for a bit, who said he would have to check twice before eating any oyster again.

After lunch, my family roamed around Darwin; they have a strip mall that barely had any people, a Coles supermarket, and a few restaurants. My sister and I walked on our way and stumbled upon three walls graffiti’d with bright greens, oranges, and pink. We took some photos then went back to the hotel to chill.

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That night, we went out to dinner at Manoli’s Greek Taverna. When we got there, it was bustling – a mustached man sat on a stool playing a banjo-guitar, waitresses sped from table to table taking orders, and families laughed while passing small plates of grilled seafood.

The manager told us the restaurant was fully booked, but my dad insisted we would eat quickly. Luckily, the manager agreed to give us a table. We ordered grilled octopus, chicken kebabs, lamb chops, and fried cheese; the smell of the charred meat stirred our appetites, which were already rumbling, and we devoured all dishes before anyone had time to take pictures.

Our second day at Darwin was relatively slow, but it was nice to explore the area a bit and lounge around. We went to sleep early that night, for an early morning start the next day.

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