Palmerston and rural
The Palmerston and Rural region includes the Tiwi Islands, Litchfield and Kakadu with a number of distinct Indigenous cultures and languages.
The region has a widely diverse landscape with wetlands, waterfalls, rainforests, bushland and sandy beaches. Being a monsoonal climate, there is a distinctive wet season period with high intensity storms, often providing spectacular lightning displays which can also cause flooding and restrict access to some communities by road.
The capital city of Darwin is the gateway to the region and its outlying communities with regular direct interstate and international flights. Located 21 km south of Darwin is the city of Palmerston. Combined, both cities have the fastest growing population in Australia reaching over 100 000 in 2009. There are a wide range of modern facilities, full public services including well-equipped hospitals, amenities, sporting complexes, shopping options and entertainment. There is a widely diverse multi-cultural population with approximately 10 percent of Indigenous background. While having large-city convenience, the lifestyle is relaxed and outdoor-oriented.
Traditional Indigenous communities are predominant outside the two main cities and include small homeland centres. Some of these areas are involved in economic ventures such as tourism, horticulture and mining. With the growth and economic diversification of smaller settlements, the region is moving towards a less centralised model of social and economic development.