Northern Territory, Australia

Aboriginal culture abounds throughout Kakadu National Park, with some 5000 sites recorded. Dating of rock art indicates that Aboriginals have been there for over 50,000 years. This is makes Kakadu one of the oldest recorded continuous occupations of a region by human beings. And I don’t blame them, because it’s pretty much one of the most beautiful places on earth! Here are a few cave paintings that I saw at the Ubirr Art Site…

Above: Namondjok, a Creation Ancestor, with underneath him Barrginj, his wife, and to his right Namarrgon, the Lightning Man, responsible for the violent lightning storms that occur every wet season. At the bottom is a large group of men and women with elaborate ceremonial headdresses.

Above: A ”Mimi Spirit” with a a spear thrower and a ”dilly” (carrying) bag. These ”Mimi” are tall, thin beings, living in the rocky escarpments and are generally considered harmless. It is believed the paintings themselves were painted by Mimi Spirits.

Above: What appears to be a turtle painted using “x-ray style”, showing the internal organs and structure of the animal.

Above: A depiction of the Rainbow Serpent, known in Kakadu as Garranga’rreli, all powerful and associated with water.

*All info on the cave paintings was taken from

*These pictures were scanned from film originals, so the quality is less than ideal.

k.h. 2002