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Dubbo NSW The best travel deals are in the bag

NSW Western Plains Travel Guide

At the Junction of the Newell & Mitchell highways, is the thriving centre of the Western Plains area. Settled first in the 1840's when a store was opened on the banks of the Maquarie River by Jean Emile de Bouillon Serisier it became a stopping point for settlers heading out in search of a "better land" and for cattle mobs being herded south to the Victorian markets of the day. Many fine old buildings remain in the town including the National Trust's Dundullimal Homestead, an 1880's classical court house with massive columns and the 1876 bank which now houses a good local museum.

One of the main attractions of Dubbo is the world renowned Western Plains Zoo which presents over 800 exotic and native animals in large open exhibits, landscaped to recreate their natural habitat.

The town of Mudgee is famous as a wine-producing region that offers so much more. It sits within a region that's born of goldrush and rural booms, where colonial history still shapes the little towns we see today in the form of heritage buildings, museums, galleries, memorial tributes to brilliant poet and writer Henry Lawson, gold fossicking, and viewing sheep shearing.

As a wine producing region for over 100 years, an opportune time to visit Mudgee is in June when for the Wine and Food Fair or in September for the Huntington Festival which fuses local food and wine with classical music.

Lying on the edge of Bell River, Wellington is renowned for its tourist attractions, setting and lifestyle. The Wellington Caves attract over 40 000 visitors a year. The Cathedral cave contains a 15m stalagmite which is thought to be the largest in the word, and in Bone Cave (only open to scientists) fossils millions of years old have been found.

27km to the south-east of town is Lake Burrendong which has a volume of water 3.5 times that of Sydney Harbour.

Bathurst is one of Australia's oldest inland cities built at a site personally chosen by Governor Macquarie in 1815. In 1851 it was the scene of Australia's first goldrush and many fine buildings remain, a legacy of the era. The Victorian Renaissance court house with a double story portico and large octagonal central dome is now home to the Bathurst Tourist Centre which has a fine collection of pictures from the gold rush. A wing of Government House, built in 1817 by Macquarie is still standing and the home of Ben Chiffley a former Prime Minister is preserved as a national memorial. The Bathurst Regional Art Gallery has a notable collection of work by Lloyd Rees.

Orange, a town of leafy parks and trees is the centre of a huge apple and pear growing industry. The soils in the area are very fertile as result of lava flows, from the extinct volcano of Mount Canobolas, which have broken down over the millenniums.

Nearby at Ophir was the first goldfield to be exploited with a sizable strike in 1851 , now a flora and fauna reserve whilst on the outskirts of town is one of the finest private mineral collections in the country at the Gallery of Minerals.


Parkes was named following the visit of Sir Henry Parkes in 1815-96 Who was one of the major contributor's in the heading-up of the Australian Federation. The original settlement went by the name of Brushmans.
Memorial Hill, Nth Parkes is a great place to view the township from. There are tourist drives that give easy self guided tours, taking around 90 mins. Walking around Parkes will include the oldest house in Parkes, Historical Museum, Gold mine site, Motor Museum,and much more. 23 Km north, the gaint saucer Telescope Information Centre.An excellent educational aid that will explain all there is to know.

Nestling in the lovely hills of the Turon River valley is Sofala, the oldest gold town in Australia. Settled only 3 weeks after the first official gold strike at Ophir, Sofala swelled to a peak population 40 000. Today it has contracted to a rustic village of around 100 people.

The surrounding district is primarily superfine wool farms. Each farm has many relics and remnants of the goldrush. boasting 7km of the original Cobb & Co coach road to Hill End, O'Reilly's extensive underground mines, Chinamans creek alluvial diggings, water races, old shanty huts & a wealth of unspoiled history to explore.

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