Bathurst

Australian Fossil and Mineral Museum, Vince Lovecchio / Tourism New South Wales

Population 30748

Bathurst, on the western side of the Great Dividing Range, is Australia's oldest inland settlement. Prior to the arrival of European settlers in 1815, it was home to the Wiradjuri people. Gold discoveries in the region in 1851 saw the township grow and prosper. Renowned as the birthplace of Ben Chifley, Australian prime minister 1945–49, it is also known for its magnificent Georgian and Victorian architecture and its motor racing circuit, Mt Panorama.

Visitor Information

1 Kendall Ave; (02) 6332 1444 or 1800 681 000

www.bathurst.nsw.gov.au

Nearby national parks

  • Kanangra–Boyd National Park

    Kanangra–Boyd National Park’s majestic landscape of wild rivers and waterfalls, mountainous terrain and deep gorges is rimmed by...more

  • Wollemi National Park

    Wollemi National Park, the second largest national park in the state and its largest wilderness area, is a primeval landscape of precipitous...more

  • Blue Mountains National Park

    Blue Mountains National Park presents an astounding and unique landscape to its millions of visitors. The terrain ripples and folds, a world...more

Nearby towns

  • Blayney

    Blayney is a farming town in the central tablelands. National Trust–classified buildings and avenues of deciduous trees add a touch of charm...more

  • Oberon

    This picturesque farming town is 1113 metres above sea level, which gives Oberon a mountain climate of cool summers, crisp winters and...more

  • Orange

    Before European occupation this area was home to the Wiradjuri people, who thrived on the plentiful bush tucker resulting from the fertile...more

In Town

Miss Traill's House Ida Traill (1889–1976) was a fourth-generation descendant of pioneers William Lee and Thomas Kite who came to Bathurst in 1818. Her house, a colonial Georgian bungalow filled with artefacts and bequeathed to the National Trust, was built in 1845, making it one of the oldest houses in Bathurst. The 19th-century cottage garden is particularly charming in spring. Russell St; (02) 6332 4232.

Historical Museum: features notable local Aboriginal artefacts in the east wing of the Neoclassical Bathurst Courthouse; Russell St; (02) 6330 8455.

Australian Fossil and Mineral Museum: exhibits close to 2000 fossil and mineral specimens, including rare and unique displays, housed in the 1876 public school building; Howick St; (02) 6331 5511.

Art Gallery: focuses on Australian art after 1955, with frequently changing exibitions; Keppel St; (02) 6333 6555.

Machattie Park: Victorian-era park in the heart of the city, with a begonia house full of bloom; Feb–Apr; Keppel, William and George sts.

Self-guide historical walking tour and self-drive tour: takes in Bathurst Gaol, the courthouse and historic homes, including Ben Chifley's house; map from visitor centre.

Nearby

Mt Panorama The inaugural Bathurst 1000 was held here in 1960 and has since become an Australian institution. The 6.2 km scenic circuit is open year-round, and while the lap record is 129.7 seconds (over 170 km/h), visitors are limited to 60 km/h. The National Motor Racing Museum at the circuit displays race cars, trophies, memorabilia and special exhibits; (02) 6332 1872. Also at Mt Panorama are the Bathurst Goldfields, a reconstruction of a historic goldmining area, and McPhillamy Park, which features the Sir Joseph Banks Nature Reserve with great views over Bathurst, especially at sunrise and sunset. 2 km S.

Abercrombie House: impressive 1870s baronial-style Gothic mansion; Ophir Rd; 6 km W.

Bathurst Sheep and Cattle Drome: visitors can milk a cow and see shearing and sheepdog demonstrations; Limekilns Rd; 6 km NE.

Bathurst Observatory: program varies throughout the year. The visitor centre features mineral, fossil and space displays. The complex is closed in inclement weather; 12 km NE.

Wallaby Rocks: wall of rock rising from the Turon River and a popular spot for kangaroos and wallabies. Also an ideal swimming and picnic spot; 40 km N.

Sofala: historic gold town and the setting for scenes from the films The Cars That Ate Paris (1974) and Sirens (1994); 42 km N.

Hill End Historic Site: former goldfield with many original buildings. The area has inspired painters Russell Drysdale, Donald Friend, John Olsen and Brett Whiteley. There is a National Parks & Wildlife Service visitor centre in old Hill End Hospital, which has a historical display and information on panning and fossicking, with equipment for hire; (02) 6337 8206. Old gold towns nearby include Peel, Wattle Flat, Rockley, O'Connell and Trunkey; 86 km NW.

Fishing spots near town

Lithgow to Mudgee 46 km

Early settlers following in the footsteps of Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson took three weeks of hard trudging to cross the majestic Blue Mountains. These days the drive from the Penrith plains in western Sydney takes... Find out more


Eco-friendly activities around town

Ice-climbing 75 km

In winter, the frozen cliffs around Blue Lake provide one of the only places in Australia to learn and perfect the art of ice-climbing. Multi-day courses involve a hike in with heavy packs, and camping out in the... Find out more


Picnicking in the Blue Mountains 79 km

Take a picnic up to the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden in Mount Tomah at any time of year and you will not be disappointed. At 1000 metres above sea level, it is usually cool in summer, brimming with flowers in spring,... Find out more


Cafes & restaurants around town

Church Bar + Woodfired Pizza

Originally a church dating back to 1850, The Crowded House cafe has been beautifully restored with a warm contemporary interior, and excellent garden and courtyard dining. The contemporary, seasonally driven modern... Find out more


Cobblestone Lane

Cobblestone Lane gleams from its location overlooking pretty Machattie Park and the dining room is simply gorgeous, set in the former Webb & Co department store (c.1863). The elegant, brasserie-style menu focuses on... Find out more


Campsites around town

Heritage Grove camping area 24 km

Heritage Grove is one of 4 main areas in Macquarie Woods that have been established by Forests NSW to demonstrate sustainable forestry. This camping area can be accessed via Cashens La, off the Mitchell Hwy, 29 km west... Find out more


Mary’s Park camping area 25 km

To reach this basic camping area, follow the signs on Sunny Corner Rd. It’s about 2.7 km west of Sunny Corner village. There are no facilities here, so bring your own everything, including toilet, drinking water... Find out more


Sunny Corner Recreation Reserve 29 km

This is a small camping area in Sunny Corner Village, a historic gold town 36 km east of Bathurst via the Great Western Hwy. The village is a good base from which to explore the surrounding forest by 4WD or trail bike.... Find out more


Heritage Grounds camping area 32 km

You’ll find this basic camping area 1 km west of rustic Wattle Flat, 8 km down the road from Sofala. Both Wattle Flat and Sofala have a winning, down-to-earth charm born of their fascinating goldmining past, as... Find out more


Amy Anderson Reserve camping area 32 km

On the Bridle Track, Amy Anderson Reserve is 42.7 km north of Bathurst and 1.3 km north of Bruinbun Reserve. Bring drinking water, firewood, a gas/fuel stove and a spare tyre.... Find out more


Bruinbun Reserve camping area 32 km

On the Bridle Track, Bruinbun Reserve is 41 km north of Bathurst. Bring your own drinking water, firewood, a gas/fuel stove and a spare tyre.... Find out more


Campbells River camping area 33 km

This is a simple but spacious camping spot in a grassy clearing on Campbells River. Throw a line in, dip a toe in, or kick back and enjoy the river from the comfort of your camp chair. To get here, take Rockley Rd from... Find out more


Tattersalls Hole Reserve camping area 34 km

On the Bridle Track, Tattersalls Hole Reserve is 44 km north of Bathurst and 2 km north of Amy Anderson Reserve. Bring drinking water, firewood, a gas/fuel stove and a spare tyre.... Find out more


Black Gate Reserve camping area 35 km

On the Bridle Track, Black Gate Reserve is 45 km north of Bathurst and 4 km north of Bruinbun Reserve. Bring drinking water, firewood, a gas/fuel stove and a spare tyre. Note: this is as far as you’ll get your... Find out more


Johnsons Hole Reserve camping area 37 km

On the Bridle Track, the Johnsons Hole Reserve camping area is 18.1 km south of Hill End and 3.4 km south of Grimley’s Hotel Reserve. Bring drinking water, firewood, a gas/fuel stove and a spare tyre.... Find out more


Caravan parks around town

BIG4 Bathurst Panorama Holiday Park 4 km

This is a quality park on the Great Western Highway, 5 km east of the centre of Bathurst, and offers a range of accommodation and great facilities including games and entertainment rooms. Bookings are required at peak... Find out more


Colour City Caravan Park 47 km

This is a council park with good basic facilities in a quiet, off-highway position, about 2 km north of the city centre, adjoining the showgrounds. It is good value at a budget price. Bookings are recommended all year... Find out more


Blackheath Glen Caravan Park 70 km

In the heart of the Blue Mountains, this park is situated in a pretty parkland setting opposite the Rhododendron Gardens, and within walking distance of the town centre and Govetts Leap lookout. There are good basic... Find out more


Katoomba Falls Caravan Park 75 km

Located in a quiet off-highway location, this neat well-appointed park is very close to Katoomba’s cable car and scenic railway. It is an ideal park for a few days stay to explore the area. Bookings are required in... Find out more


Hotels, motels & B&Bs around town

Bishop’s Court Estate 
Boutique Hotel

Bishop’s Court Estate is perched on a hilltop overlooking Bathurst. This stunning double-storey Victorian residence set in parkland was built in 1870 for the local Anglican bishop, hence the chapel on the grounds.... Find out more


Encore Apartments

Contemporary style awaits guests at the fully self-contained Encore Apartments in the heart of Bathurst. There are one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments to choose from – the top of the range is the Townhouse... Find out more


Eco-friendly places to stay around town

Clonturkle Sanctuary 24 km

Join the experiment in sustainable living and tourism at Clonturkle Earth Hamlet and Forest Sanctuary. Located at Yetholme, there are four cabins set on 240 hectares of mostly eucalypt forest, with 15 kilometres of... Find out more


Jenolan Cabins 60 km

These basic but cosy self-contained cabins, 6 kilometres up the steep hill past Jenolan Caves, are earth-sheltered for climate control and have composting toilets and rainwater. There are great views over the mountains,... Find out more


Dargan Springs Mountain Lodge, Clarence 61 km

At the soft end of ecotourism, this pleasant lodge and wellness retreat has advanced eco-certification. It is surrounded by a mountain ash forest dotted with waratahs, the habitat of wombats and wallabies. With a maximum... Find out more


Woolshed Cabins, near Blackheath 68 km

Eleven kilometres from Blackheath and surrounded by a glorious natural amphitheatre of towering sandstone walls, the Woolshed Cabins sit on 100 hectares of cleared farmland (a working cattle farm) in the Kanimbla Valley,... Find out more


Kanimbla View, Blackheath 69 km

Solar-powered, the two- and three-bedroom cottages here are surprisingly large inside. They are partially constructed from recycled and salvaged timbers, have composting toilets and a great view of the Kanimbla Valley... Find out more


Jemby-Rinjah Eco Lodge, Blackheath 73 km

One of the first working examples of large-scale sustainable tourism to exist in Australia, Jemby-Rinjah has advanced eco-accreditation, and one of the most extensive systems of composting toilets in the country. Ten... Find out more


Old Leura Dairy 76 km

This creative collection of six buildings, which can sleep up to 30 people in various combinations, has been renovated and fitted out with all manner of recycled bits and bobs. There are old oven doors, rusted corrugated... Find out more


Wollemi Wilderness Retreat, Bilpin 82 km

These unusual self-contained cabins of various sizes feature passive solar design and are mainly constructed from recycled and salvaged materials. Although not high-class, they all have a spa and are in isolated bush... Find out more


Bunjaree Cottages, Wentworth Falls 82 km

Great for families, Bunjaree Cottages have been designed to make a small environmental footprint, with full solar power and earth-brick insulation. One is built with recycled car tyres and mud, providing even better... Find out more


Rest areas around town

The Rocks rest area 19 km

21km W of Bathurst (R) or 35km E of Orange (L)

Adjacent to the highway among a few trees.


Macquarie Wood camping area 25 km

T/O 29km W of Bathurst (R) or 27km E of Orange (L)

Open grassed area among trees, 2km (unsealed) north of the highway via Cashens La.


Sunny Corner camping area 29 km

T/O 34km E of Bathurst (L) or 28km W of Lithgow (R)

Secluded area surrounded by trees 7km north of the highway.


Blayney park area 33 km

At Blayney

Adjacent to the highway on the west side of town.


Carcoar Dam camping area 43 km

T/O 59km NE of Cowra (R) or 46km SW of Bathurst (L)

On the shores of the dam 2km south of the highway.


Fullers Lane rest area 44 km

57km NE of Cowra (R) or 48km SW of Bathurst (L)

Just off the highway under a few trees with good views of the surrounding countryside.


Lake Wallace park area 46 km

T/O 51km E of Bathurst (L) or 11km W of Lithgow (R)

Located 2km north of the highway on the shores of the lake.


Gamboola rest area 60 km

17km NW of Orange (L) or 17km SE of Molong (R)

Just off the highway among some trees.


Kingsley Fairborough park area 71 km

29km NW of Orange (R) or 5km SE of Molong (L)

Just off the highway under shady trees.


Molong park area 75 km

At Molong

Just off the highway on the banks of Molong Creek.


Bell River rest area 85 km

42km S of Wellington (L)  

Adjacent to the highway. For southbound only.


What's on around town

Farmers' Market: Bathurst Showground, Kendall Ave; 4th Sat each month (3rd in Dec); 

Wine Tasting and Cellar Doors: various venues, 1st weekend each month.

Gold Crown Festival: harness racing; Mar.

Autumn Colours: variety of events celebrating autumn; Mar–May.

V8 Supercars 1000: Oct.

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