Known variously as Victoria River, Victoria River Crossing and Victoria River Inn, this tiny settlement (really nothing more than a roadhouse) is located on the Victoria Highway 194 km west of Katherine and 282 km east of the Northern Territory and Western Australia border. The Victoria River was first explored by Europeans in 1839 when Captain J. C. Wickham arrived at its mouth in the HMS Beagle. He named the river after Queen Victoria. Such was the slowness of exploration of the Territory that it wasn't until sixteen years later that Sir Augustus Charles Gregory (after whom the local hotel is named) sailed from Moreton Bay to explore the estuary of the river. With a crew of eighteen and a number of scientists, Gregory sailed up the Victoria River and then explored Sturts Creek for 500 km before it disappeared into the desert. Gregory was eager to establish a town which, royalist that he was, he wanted to call Albert after Queen Victoria's husband. The plan came to nothing.