Sugar bananas, dragon fruit, rambutans, durian. Sticky rice, papaya salad, egg custards. No, we’re not at a produce market in Thailand. We’re in Darwin, where every weekend the local markets are bursting with fresh food and produce.

When you think of Darwin do you think of fresh durian bigger than your head? Probably not. But the markets are a huge part of life for the locals, and prove that the Northern Territory is home to more than red dust and crocodiles. Here’s our guide to Darwin’s best markets.

Parap Markets

Darwin locals rise early to beat the heat, so to beat the crowds, Parap Markets is best tackled early. Make a beeline for the car park, where food stalls set up from as early as 1am to secure their favourite spot. They’ll start serving food from 6am and by lunch time have lines three and four deep. Your best tactic at Parap is to divide and conquer – grab one of the plastic tables and some chairs tucked under shade cloths and send someone out to gather the food.