The green belt suburb of Marrara lies just to the north of Darwin Airport. The belt embraces passive recreational reserves, the Darwin Golf Club and the Marrara sporting complex. And if you have made the journey to the Top End to get on smiling terms with a crocodile, Marrara and Crocodylus Park have been tailored just for you. The park offers close but entirely safe encounters with crocs, lions, monkeys and all manner of native and exotic animals. The park also has a museum in which photographs and displays enable you to sift out the true crocodile stores from the myths. The northern suburbs are a pleasant, 14km drive from the centre of Darwin. Like most Australian capital cities, Darwin is generously endowed with botanical gardens and zoological parks. Naturally, the gardens are rich in lush, colourful, tropical plants while the wildlife parks tend to focus largely on those impressive and quite extraordinary survivors of the age of the dinosaurs, the crocodile. Others, however, simply invite the visitor to bask in the singular landscape which sets the Top End apart from the rest of the ancient ark that is Australia.