I walked down to the Mindil markets last night – a weekly event during the dry season here in Darwin. I realised about 10 mins out that I didn’t bring my map with me, so I was a little worried that I would miss the turnoff to the beach. As it turned out, all I needed to do was follow the other people all walking the same direction – I took a punt and it turned out to be correct. The signs helped too !
After a 30 minute walk from the city, I got there just before sunset – and headed down to Mindil Beach to see what was there, only to discover several hundred (maybe even as many as a thousand) people already there sitting and standing on the beach watching the sun go down.
It was kind of a surreal experience, with so many people taking photos of the setting sun (I lost count at over 200 people with cameras actively taking photos), it was almost like it was something that never happened anywhere else. I felt that it was more the marketing of the area, “stunning sunsets” and such, than anything truely stunning. I mean, sure, the sunset was nice – especially the way the light reflected off the water … but I’ve seen much more spectacular sunsets where the sky seems to be aflame with crimsons and scarlets and such. And if I was going to go somewhere to watch a sunset, I certainly wouldn’t plan to be at the same spot as a thousand other people !!
Anyway, it was very pleasant, and I had a nice walk along the beach while I watched the sun sink below the horizon.
Heading back to the markets, along the foreshore, I started wandering through the stalls, to find nothing but food. Stall after stall of food. Chinese, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Sri Lankan, Thai, Japanese, Greek, Italian, Australian and more. I did find other stalls as well – but it seemed that there were more food stalls than other types. I ended up choosing a few small dishes from a number of stalls for dinner – wonderful food.
I was a little disappointed with the other stalls – not a huge number of them and mostly they had small trinkets you often find at markets anywhere, but which I can’t imagine anyone ever wanting to buy.
Regardless, it was a very pleasant way to spend an evening – and well worth the effort.