Melville Island is Australia's second largest island after Tasmania. There is little infrastructure on the island, and is not open to the public for tourism, except on an organised tour. Separated from Bathurst Island by only two kilometres, Melville Island has a similar history. It was first sighted by Abel Tasman in 1644 on his way from Batavia.
In 1818 the son of New South Wales Governor Philip Gidley King, Phillip Parker King explored the island (he named it after Viscount Melville) and was surprised to discover that the local Aboriginal people knew some Portuguese words. He deduced they had made contact with Portuguese sailors after a Portuguese ship had been wrecked nearby.
Ownership of Melville Island was returned to the Tiwi people in 1978, and like Bathurst Island, it is run by the Tiwi Land Council. Milikapiti, Pirlangimpi and Paru are the main communities, which are serviced by schools, sports ovals, museums and art and craft galleries.
Temperatures for Melville Island
Melville Island has hot summer temperatures. The summer high temperature for Melville Island is approximately 34 °c. The summer low temperature is approximately 24 °c.
Melville Island has warm winter temperatures. The winter high temperature for Melville Island is approximately 33 °c. The winter low temperature is approximately 16 °c.
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