WELCOME TO 'BIG SKY' COUNTRY

The untamed beauty of Mt Kaputar, the tranquil Pilliga Artesian Bore Bath, and the wondrous CSIRO Australia Telescopes are just a few of the attractions that make the Narrabri Region a must-see destination.



Covering 13,000-square-kilometres, the Narrabri Region is the heart of the rich Namoi Valley in North West NSW and is home to the Kamilaroi People. The region boasts three major towns, Narrabri, Wee Waa, and Boggabri with several smaller villages scattered throughout. Renowned for the production of some of the world’s highest quality wheat, cotton, fat lambs and beef and home to several research facilities, the Narrabri Region is truly an agricultural wonderland.


One glimpse of a clear night sky will leave you with no doubts as to why this region is known as ‘Big Sky’ country. Nestled at the base of the Nandewar Ranges, the Narrabri Region is an explorer’s paradise, with an abundance of national parks, walking tracks, unique wildlife and secluded waterways. All this is joined by a wealth of excellent tourist attractions sure to keep visitors entertained for days.


The Newell and Kamilaroi Highways run through the Narrabri Region, bringing people from all compass points. For those travelling from further afield, the region is also serviced by daily planes and trains. Accommodation is plentiful and of excellent standard, including motels, caravan parks, B&B’s, campgrounds and farm stays.


There is something for everyone in the Narrabri Region. Whether you are looking for an adventure or a little bit of relaxation, treat yourself with a unique day trip that will satisfy whatever you’re craving.


Boutiques and Bistros


Narrabri Region Visitor Information Centre

A trip inside the Narrabri Region Visitor Information Centre is an experience in itself. The Centre is brimming with fascinating information, delicious local produce and displays that will impress and captivate you. Here you can learn about the district’s best attractions, discover local history and read about regional farming practices. The highlight is a cotton display, which boasts a genuine giant red cotton picker that guests can climb into and ‘operate’. Make it an essential stop on your Narrabri Region itinerary.


Shopping

Take a stroll down the main street in any of Narrabri Region’s towns and you will be pleasantly surprised by the variety of boutiques available. Spend your day finding unexpected treasures and one-off pieces crafted by local artisans, or delve into the many cotton products showcasing why the region is known as the Cotton Capital of Australia.


On the first Saturday of each month head to the banks of the Narrabri Creek for the Gypsy Willow Markets. Buy handcrafted products and interact directly with their maker, or indulge in some delicious locally-made goodies while enjoying the community atmosphere.


Dining

With such a rich agricultural focus, it makes sense that the Narrabri Region has a desirable mix of charming cafes and trendy bars. Start your morning by feasting on a decadent pastry or a scrumptious breakfast at a locally-run cafe. Lunch like a local and relax in the cool shade of one of the region’s many restaurants. Enjoy sunsets and spirit tastings with a view of the Nandewar Ranges at an internationally award-winning distillery, before finishing your day with dinner at one of the local hotels. From luxurious décor to unexpected menu offerings, these establishments are modernising what it means to be a country pub and delighting even the fussiest of diners.


Explore the Narrabri Region


Narrabri West and Yarrie Lake

The Narrabri Region has plenty of water-based activities that will keep you cool during the summer months. Take a stroll or cycle around the 3km track of the Narrabri West Lake or grab a kayak and go for a paddle. Venture further afield and visit Yarrie Lake between Narrabri and Wee Waa. The lake is a 3km saucer-shaped expanse of water on the edge of the Pilliga Forest and is thought to have been formed by a falling meteor many thousands of years ago. It is a summer favourite for locals and visitors alike, with water sports available during the day and campfires under clear summer skies at night.


CSIRO Australia Telescopes Compact Array

The Dish times six! Satisfy your scientific curiosities with the most advanced radio telescopes in the southern hemisphere at the CSIRO Australia Telescopes Compact Array. Discover the magic that draws scientists from around the world to Narrabri in their quest to unlock the secrets of the universe.


The six 22m-wide dish antennas work together to simulate a much larger antenna with a 6km diameter, allowing astronomers to observe more detailed images than a single large dish could achieve. The Australia Telescopes Visitor Centre includes an exhibition on astronomy, ‘out-of-this-universe’ photos captured by the antennas and allows visitors to see up-to-minute particulars of what is currently being tracked.


Museums of the Narrabri Region

The Narrabri Region has a rich history, and its various museums allow visitors to gain insight into what it was like living in the region in days gone by. Get a taste of life as a prisoner of yesteryear at the Narrabri Old Gaol Museum. Be regaled by fascinating stories from the days of the gaol’s operation and take a sneak peek at how the prisoners lived. Or head to one of the surrounding towns for a wonderful reminder of our agricultural history. The Wee Waa Echo Museum, Boggabri Tractor Shed and Boggabri Historical Museum are home to many fascinating items and machinery pertaining to the history and culture of the Wee Waa and Boggabri districts.


Top of the world


Mt Kaputar and the Deriah Aboriginal Area

Climb the 1512m summit of Mt Kaputar National Park, where you will be treated to panoramic views encompassing a staggering 10 per cent of NSW. Rising high above the surrounding agricultural plains, millions of years of erosion have forged this volcanic wilderness into the Nandewar Ranges you see today. The higher you ascend into the clouds the cooler it becomes, with the temperature of the summit often being 10°C lower than the agricultural plains below, making it the perfect summer escape. Picnic at one of the lookouts or take a hike and explore the rugged landscape, there is something for every type of adventurer at Mt Kaputar.


Uncover the secrets of the Deriah Aboriginal Area, located at the foothills of the Nandewar Ranges. The reserve forms part of the traditional country of the Kamilaroi people and allows visitors to explore the unique wildlife of the area and learn more about Aboriginal cultural heritage.


Sawn Rocks and Rocky Creek Glacial Area

Experience an almighty wall of organ pipes without stepping foot inside a church. Sawn Rocks’ towering 40m high pillars are undoubtedly the most iconic reminder of Mt Kaputar’s volcanic past. The 750m easy walking trail meanders through tall eucalyptus, figs and ferns to an observation platform affording uninterrupted views of the rock formation.


Head further east past Sawn Rocks and you will encounter the Rocky Creek Glacial Area. Dating back some 290 million years, this area no longer presents with any of the typical glacial features. The picturesque creek left behind is the perfect place to go for a swim and unwind in the peace and quiet.


Helicopter adventure

Tick off a bucket list item and observe the more remote and inaccessible parts of the Narrabri Region in an ultimate helicopter adventure. From the peaks of Mt Kaputar to the expanse of the Pilliga Forest and the agricultural plains in between, there is a helicopter flight for every type of explorer. A knowledgeable local pilot will make you feel like an expert on the region by the time you land, revealing areas most locals have never seen.


Head west


Salt Caves and Pilliga Forest Lookout Tower

The scenery within the Pilliga Forest is unique and makes a trip into the scrub quite an adventure. As you drive along one of the many crisscrossed roads on your way to the Salt Caves you may come across remnants of the past, including chimney stacks and abandoned timber mills.


Explore the Salt Caves, where legend has it, the caves were once 30m deep, and salt hung in columns like stalactites from the roof. Take a break at the Salt Caves picnic area, which offers BBQs and toilet facilities. Hike up the escarpment to the Pilliga Forest Lookout Tower where you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of a million wild acres.


Sculptures in the Scrub

Head further into the largest forest in NSW and discover the cultural delight, Sculptures in the Scrub. The magnificent sculptures were created by artists working with local Aboriginal Elders to showcase their history and culture. While wandering the Sculpture Trail, soak in the views of Dandry Gorge before descending into the sheltered oasis of Dandry Creek below. During spring and early summer, you will also be treated to spectacular wildflower displays throughout the Pilliga.


Pilliga Artesian Bore Bath

Soak away those aches and pains in the 37-degree mineral-rich water of the Pilliga Artesian Bore Bath. Since it was constructed in 1902, the Pilliga Artesian Bore Bath has become a popular recreational spot for swimming and camping. The therapeutic value of this water has long been recognised by locals and visitors who make regular pilgrimages to the Bath. Open 24 hours a day, relax in the Bath while enjoying the sunset and serenity that Pilliga is known for.


To plan your visit to the Narrabri Region today, discover everything you need to know below.


@NarrabriRegion

visitnarrabri.com.au

(02) 6799 6760 / 1800 659 931




{words: Narrabri Region Visitor Information Centrephotography: Andrew Pearson Photography}