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Celebrating 'A Taste of Kakadu'

12 June 2019

A Taste of Kakadu has wrapped for another year and organisers have deemed it the most popular one yet.
Kakadu’s Tourism and Visitor Services Manager, Anja Toms said this food festival, 65,000 years in the making, continues to attract strong interest from visitors. 
“It’s easy to see why visitors love this festival. It has a wide variety of local talent entertaining visitors between native food foraging expeditions, cooking demonstrations and traditional Aboriginal cultural activities hosted by local tour operators,” she said.
Bowali Visitor Centre was a wonderful festival hub. On the opening night the atmosphere was electric, with visitors welcomed with a traditional dance and Welcome to Country, local band Jabirumours played, and there was cake for everyone to mark the national park’s 40th anniversary this year.
“It was very much a celebratory atmosphere, very upbeat and we had a fantastic turn out, which is great to see,” Anja said.
“It’s really encouraging to see everyone supporting local businesses, it’s an event that gets the whole community involved.”
Marrawuddi Gallery’s Man-me art exhibition was on display in the festival hub throughout the 10-day festival, and Bowali Visitor Centre hosted cooking demonstrations by chefs Mark Olive and Paul Iskov, painting workshops, ground oven cook-ups, a bush tucker walk and basket weaving workshops. 
Kakadu Billabong Safari Camp hosted men’s and women’s cultural workshops and an intimate cultural immersion experience at Patonga Homestead. Kakadu Cultural Tours offered a rare look at Mawurndaddja Arnhem Land and the Njanjma Rangers treated visitors to a special event at Ubirr, with traditional weaving, damper cooked on the camp fire and a fantastic dance performance that delighted guests. 

There was also a bush foods walk where Animal Tracks tour operators shared their knowledge, and Jabiru Area School VET students led cooking demonstrations showcasing specialty dishes they typically cook with their families using local ingredients. 
Another festival favourite was the Hunter Family feast on the banks of Anbangbang Billabong.
The Croc hosted a ‘Taste of Kakadu’ buffet and Cocktails at the Croc.  Out on Cooinda Airstrip unseasonal rainfall failed to deter diners at Kakadu Tourism’s Anme Garringun Ganji Mayambolk (Dinner Under the Milky Way), with many commenting it enhanced the authentic experience and added to the atmosphere.
“Visitors to Kakadu are keen to immerse themselves in the Aboriginal culture and gain an insight into how people lived in traditional times when all their ingredients had to be sourced from country,” Anja said.
“The timing of the festival couldn’t have been better, with so many of Kakadu’s natural attractions opening to the public early, after a drier than normal wet season.”
She thanked all who had been involved in making the festival such a success.