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[{"address":"14 Esplanade","placeId":null,"location":{"longitudeDelta":0.1598130960464033,"latitudeDelta":0.09219986310369421,"latitude":-12.466518602047383,"longitude":130.8449580284701},"media":[{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FAdminOffice%20(2).JPG?alt=media&token=749e390d-f84c-4472-a94d-e69613b70351"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FIMG_0192%5B1%5D.JPG?alt=media&token=39084dde-7d3b-4c20-bec4-efc7b81de32d"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FAdminOffice.JPG?alt=media&token=fe62ad36-f616-4e6b-9fe6-6ba6039f7926"},{"type":"text","content":"The Administrator’s Office was originally the Darwin Courthouse and Police Station, it underwent several transformations over the years. Initially a timber structure erected in 1870, it was later replaced with limestone in 1884 due to damage from white ants. Designed by architect John G Knight, this building served as the inaugural courthouse, cell block, and police station in the Northern Territory.\n\nDuring World War II, the Courthouse buildings were repurposed as the headquarters of the Royal Australian Navy in response to Japanese bombing raids targeting Northern Australia, particularly Darwin. The devastating bombing raid on February 19, 1942, caused significant casualties and infrastructure damage. While the courthouse survived the attack, the police station had to be demolished.\n\nIn December 1974, Cyclone Tracy inflicted substantial damage on the building, which had been serving as Naval Headquarters until then. Despite the destruction, efforts were made to salvage components such as doors, windows, roof trusses, and veranda posts from the original 1884 structure. These salvaged elements were used in the reconstruction of the building, which reopened in 1981 as the offices of the Administrator.\n\nToday, the Administrator's Office stands as a significant landmark in Darwin, showcasing the resilience of early public buildings in the region. Take a look around the beautiful gardens, you will notice a ships anchor, a very old telegraph pole and out the back are the cell blocks.\n\nNext stop is Government House.\n\n"}]},{"address":"Government House","placeId":null,"location":{"longitudeDelta":0.1598130960464033,"latitudeDelta":0.09219986310369421,"latitude":-12.46812140596394,"longitude":130.84364911047084},"media":[{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FIMG_0165.JPG?alt=media&token=4fec9728-34a1-490e-96d4-0dd591cea6ea"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FResidence_ph0238-0074.jpg?alt=media&token=bb720e99-516b-4841-a7b0-ea757dc96822"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FAdminHouse.JPG?alt=media&token=0d488382-ee27-40b4-8c45-b065c8a25a9b"},{"type":"text","content":"Government House, initially completed in 1871 has also undergone several transformations and renovations throughout its history. Originally, it featured a central hall with stone walls, six bedrooms, a bathroom, a pantry, and a kitchen with a stone chimney and fireplace, all surrounded by a verandah.\n\nA second storey was added in 1874, but it succumbed to damage from white ants within a year. In 1878, a new design by architect John George Knight was implemented, and construction of the new residency commenced in 1879, utilising cypress pine as well as local porcellanite stone.\n\nIn 1911, the Commonwealth Government assumed control over the Northern Territory and Dr John Gilruth, became the first Administrator of the Northern Territory.\n\nAdministrator Gilruth, conducted improvements such as new bathrooms, a servants' block, a modernized kitchen, and a rebuilt tennis court.\n\n"},{"type":"text","content":"In 1937, a cyclone caused widespread damage, prompting the construction of a new office that doubled as a bomb shelter. This office sustained a direct hit during the bombing of Darwin in 1942."},{"type":"text","content":"Despite suffering some wind and rain damage during Cyclone Tracy in December 1974, Government House's roof remained intact.\n\nIn 2003, during the tenure of Administrator Charles Abbott, a decision was made to refurbish Government House to reflect its late 1930s and 1940s appearance. This refurbishment, guided by detailed descriptions provided by Mrs. Abbott, encompassed elements such as paint colours, furniture arrangement, floor coverings, and room usage. The refurbishments were completed in November 2010, and to this day, the exterior of Government House retains its 1937 appearance.\n\n"},{"type":"text","content":"A short stroll from here is another heritage listed building, .. .. Lyons Cottage, come on, I'll tell you about it when we get there."}]},{"address":"Northern Territory Indigenous Tours","placeId":null,"location":{"longitudeDelta":0.1598130960464033,"latitudeDelta":0.09219986310369421,"latitude":-12.464549130066697,"longitude":130.83969016996485},"media":[{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FIMG_0161.JPG?alt=media&token=bcf2e39d-5aab-4340-8b61-7cfc3fae6e16"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FLyonsCottage_ph0091-0093.jpg?alt=media&token=8ba116aa-f109-497e-aa80-a46703513349"},{"type":"text","content":"Lyons Cottage has a rich history dating back to its construction in 1925. Originally built as accommodation for the management staff and families of the Darwin Cable Company, it was known colloquially as Bat House, named after the British Australia Telegraph Company, which operated the cable.\n\nIn the late 19th century, following the laying of the cable in the 1870s, the cable company erected several significant buildings along The Esplanade. However, many of these structures fell victim to natural disasters, such as the devastating cyclone of 1937 and the Japanese bombing raids of 1942. Remarkably, Lyons Cottage emerged unscathed from the wreckage and was subsequently occupied by the United States Army during the war years from 1943 to 1945.\n\nIn the post-war era, Lyons Cottage played a pivotal role in addressing Darwin's acute housing shortage. Lawyer John 'Tiger' Lyons and his family leased the property upon their return to Darwin after the war and eventually purchased it in 1952. Mr Lyons later served as Lord Mayor of Darwin and as a member of the Legislative Council.\n\nFollowing Mr Lyons' passing in 1970, plans to develop the site into a multi-story hotel were met with staunch opposition from Darwin's heritage-conscious residents. The onset of Cyclone Tracy in 1974 further thwarted development plans, causing damage to the cottage's roof and ornate plaster ceilings.\n\nSubsequent restoration efforts focused on preserving the cottage's exterior to reflect its post 1942 appearance, while the interior was restored to evoke the period between 1926 and 1942. In early 1984, the Museums & Art Galleries Board transformed Lyons Cottage into a museum showcasing early Darwin history. Today, it is managed by the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory.\n\nOK, we will stroll through the city centre now to another heritage listed building with a rich history, .. .. the Sue Wah Chin Building.\n\n"}]},{"address":"Stone House Wine Bar & Kitchen","placeId":null,"location":{"longitudeDelta":0.1598130960464033,"latitudeDelta":0.09219986310369421,"latitude":-12.461783463300945,"longitude":130.84208270040614},"media":[{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FIMG_0150.JPG?alt=media&token=33c4edea-f249-4278-b6fb-c4360ce21b30"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FIMG_0151.JPG?alt=media&token=18d500f2-ed2c-4626-b4a7-8ca2e2ca6c5b"},{"type":"text","content":"The Sue Wah Chin Building, also known as the Stone House, is an iconic example of Darwin's enduring architectural heritage. Constructed in 1888 by Kwong Sue Duk the building is constructed from porcellanite rock that was quarried locally.\n\nOriginally built with hipped roofs, the building comprises five commercial premises, each with a uniform layout characterised by a central door and windows on either side.\n\nApparently, the far-left tenancy of the building was reinforced to protect the opium stored within Kwong Sue Duk's distribution centre. He was a herbalist and Chinese Doctor and had moved to Darwin with plans to process opium for export. Selling opium wasn’t illegal in those days but that business idea didn’t work out for Dr Sue Duk.\n\nAs one of the few surviving nineteenth-century porcellanite structures in Darwin's city centre, the Sue Wah Chin Building holds significant cultural and historical importance. It symbolises a pivotal period in the development of the Northern Territory, marked by the establishment and expansion of the Chinese population as an integral part of the Darwin community.\n\nThroughout its existence, the Sue Wah Chin Building has weathered numerous challenges, including cyclones in 1897, 1937, and the devastating Cyclone Tracy in 1974, as well as bombing raids during World War II. In the aftermath of Cyclone Tracy, the building's hipped roofs were replaced with a flat roof, but its resilient porcellanite construction remained steadfast.\n\nOwned by the esteemed Chin family from 1921 until 2008, the Sue Wah Chin Building continues to serve as a cherished landmark within the Darwin community. Its enduring presence and rich historical significance offer a glimpse into Darwin's past and underscore the city's cultural diversity and resilience in the face of adversity.\n\nAs you can see, Chinese immigrants have significantly shaped Darwin’s development and culture. Their labour and entrepreneurship helped build the city’s infrastructure, while their traditions enrich its social tapestry. The Chinese Museum in Darwin stands as a tribute to their story, showcasing their historical impact and cultural contributions to the city and that is where we will head to next.\n\n"}]},{"address":"Chinese Temple","placeId":null,"location":{"longitudeDelta":0.1598130960464033,"latitudeDelta":0.09219986310369421,"latitude":-12.462611071222168,"longitude":130.8447434517489},"media":[{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FIMG_0144.JPG?alt=media&token=39db76b9-4e6c-4ef1-9b9c-118273cfbf9e"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FIMG_0145.JPG?alt=media&token=02a840df-59ba-4baf-b53f-659a2770c927"},{"type":"text","content":"Discover the cultural richness of Darwin at the Chung Wah Temple, a hidden gem nestled in the heart of the city. Built in 1887 by early Chinese immigrants, this ornately decorated temple is one of the oldest surviving structures of its kind in Australia. As you step inside, you'll be immersed in a world of vibrant colours, intricate carvings, and flickering incense. The temple serves as a spiritual sanctuary for the local Chinese community, offering a place of worship and reflection. Take your time to admire the exquisite craftsmanship of the temple's architecture and learn about its significance in preserving Chinese heritage in Darwin."},{"type":"text","content":"When you are ready, I'll show you one of Darwin's artistic centres that also has a rich history - .. .. Brown's Mart."}]},{"address":"1 Harry Chan Ave","placeId":null,"location":{"longitudeDelta":0.1598130960464033,"latitudeDelta":0.09219986310369421,"latitude":-12.465230066220746,"longitude":130.8442391964541},"media":[{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FBrown's%20Mart.JPG?alt=media&token=ac4bae2a-be29-4f97-b8fe-d5be8e02d2ae"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FBrowns.JPG?alt=media&token=c93f0bb0-94eb-4fc0-a439-27bbc8fb542b"},{"type":"text","content":"This classic old stone building is Brown’s Mart Theatre. This theatre boasts a story as rich and dramatic as any play performed on its stage. Built in 1885, its life began as a commercial venture. Vaiben Louis Solomon constructed it, initially naming it \"Solomon's Mart.\" Notably, it was one of the few buildings constructed from local stone, a wise decision considering the cyclones that would plague Darwin throughout history."},{"type":"text","content":"In 1887, Victor Vowles Brown took ownership, establishing the Port Darwin Mercantile and Agency Co. This shift led to the now familiar \"Brown's Mart\" moniker. Over the years, the building served a variety of purposes, housing shipping agencies, a bank, and even the Northern Territory Mining Exchange."},{"type":"text","content":"Brown's Mart proved its resilience in the face of adversity. It endured cyclones in 1897, 1937, and the devastating Cyclone Tracy in 1974. Each time, the building suffered significant damage, but it was always rebuilt, a testament to its strength. World War II also saw a temporary shift in use, as the armed forces requisitioned it for a period as a torpedo workshop."},{"type":"text","content":"The 1970s ushered in a new era. Fueled by the vision of Ken Conway, Darwin's first full-time community arts officer, and an Australian Council for the Arts grant, Brown's Mart underwent a significant transformation. In 1972, the historic building transitioned from a commercial space to a community theatre. This wasn't just a cosmetic change; it was the birth of a vibrant hub for artistic expression. Brown's Mart Theatre became a springboard for the Brown's Mart Community Arts Project, a platform for self-sufficient, community-driven arts initiatives."},{"type":"text","content":"Today, Brown's Mart Theatre is a cherished landmark. Recognized for its historical and cultural significance, it's listed on the Northern Territory Heritage Register. It remains a prominent venue for major events like the Darwin Festival, the Darwin Fringe Festival, and local live music performances. Brown's Mart Theatre transcends being a stage – it's a symbol of Darwin's unwavering spirit and its deep commitment to the arts."},{"type":"text","content":"Up next, the Town Hall ruins."},{"type":"text","content":"Not all our old buildings were restored. Come on, I'll show you. It's just across the road."}]},{"address":"Town Hall Ruins","placeId":null,"location":{"longitudeDelta":0.1598130960464033,"latitudeDelta":0.09219986310369421,"latitude":-12.465460536513826,"longitude":130.84383150068385},"media":[{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FTownHall.JPG?alt=media&token=8102137b-9579-4c74-8f7e-6bdf7d044f15"},{"type":"img","content":"https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0/b/freeguides-prod.appspot.com/o/assets%2Ftours%2FtSajtCQl0c5ARerKgx8C%2FTownhall%20(2).JPG?alt=media&token=2926d8ee-a3ac-43cc-9648-8f625c10979b"},{"type":"text","content":"The Old Town Hall was once a grand architectural marvel, and stood as the heart of Darwin's civic life. Erected in 1883, it hosted a plethora of community events and gatherings, becoming an integral part of Darwin's identity. Tragically, the building was severely damaged during the bombing raids of World War II, but it was the destruction caused by Cyclone Tracy in 1974 that left the town hall in ruins. Today, these weathered walls and crumbling facades serve as a poignant reminder of Darwin's turbulent past and the resilience of its inhabitants. As you explore the ruins, take a moment to reflect on the history that has shaped Darwin into the vibrant city it is today."},{"type":"text","content":".. ..\n\nOK, it is here that I will say farewell to you today. I hope you have enjoyed this look into Darwin's past. There is so much more to see and experience in Darwin. If you have time, I do encourage you to explore the many exciting options that make Darwin such a great place to visit. Check out the other tours on offer, for more amazing things to see and do in Darwin.\n\nBye now.\n\n"}]}]
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Discover Darwin
Australia

Famous for its outdoor markets, stunning sunsets, and gateway to natural wonders like Kakadu, it's a unique blend of adventure and relaxation under endless blue skies.

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