Homebush Hotel, Hank Van Apeldoorn / Tourism New South Wales

Population 1217

Balranald is the oldest town on the lower part of the Murrumbidgee River. Situated on saltbush and mallee plains, the area now embraces the viticulture, horticulture and tourism industries. A string of dry lake beds stretches to the north of Balranald, the most famous of which are preserved in Mungo National Park. The oldest human footprints in Australia were found in the park, estimated to be up to 23 000 years old.

Visitor Information

Balranald Visitor Information Centre, 81 Market St, Balranald; (03) 5020 1599

Nearby national parks

  • Wyperfeld National Park

    In the state’s arid north-west, Wyperfeld is a vast park of open plains and spreading mallee eucalypts. The usually bone-dry bed of...more

  • Willandra National Park

    Scrubby red sand plains stretch to the horizon in Willandra National Park, in the state’s remote west. In its heyday Willandra was one...more

Nearby towns

  • Robinvale

    Robinvale is set on the New South Wales border besides a pretty stretch of the Murray River. The Robinswood Homestead, built in 1926, was...more

  • Swan Hill

    In 1836, explorer Thomas Mitchell named this spot Swan Hill because of the black swans that kept him awake all night. The town's swans...more

  • Hay

    Located in the heart of the Riverina, the most striking thing about Hay is the incredibly flat plains on which it sits. The saltbush flats...more

In Town

Heritage Park Investigate the old gaol, the Murray pine schoolhouse, local history displays and a historical museum. There are also picnic and barbecue facilities. Market St.

Art gallery: exhibitions by local artists, housed in 1880s Masonic Lodge; Mayall St.

Balranald Weir: barbecues, picnics, fishing.

Memorial Drive: great views.

Frog Sculptures: 14 throughout town.

Self-guide town walk: historically significant buildings in the town; maps available from visitor centre.


Mungo National Park This park is the focal point of the Willandra Lakes World Heritage Area, a 240 000 ha region dotted with 17 dry lakes. These lakes display astounding evidence of ancient Aboriginal life and of creatures that existed during the last Ice Age, including Mungo Man, a full male skeleton estimated to be around 40 000 years old. The highlight is the 33 km crescent-shaped dune on the eastern edge of Lake Mungo, called the Walls of China, which you can visit on a 70 km self-guided drive through the park. There is also the 10km Zanci Pastoral Loop, which you can drive or cycle, starting from the Mungo Visitor Centre to the site of the old Zanci homestead. The Mungo Visitor Centre delves into the heritage of the Willandra Lakes, and has a replica of the diprotodon, a massive wombat-like marsupial; Arumpo Rd; (03) 5021 8900 or 1300 361 967. Accommodation in the park includes the old Mungo Shearers' Quarters and a campground. 100 km N.

Moulamein The oldest town in the Riverina, Moulamein has fascinating historic structures to explore including its restored courthouse (1845) and Old Wharf (1850s). There are picnic areas by the Edward River and Lake Moulamein. 99 km SE.

Yanga Lake: fishing and watersports; 7 km SE.

Homebush Hotel: built in 1878 as a Cobb & Co station, the hotel now provides meals and accommodation; (03) 5020 6803; 25 km N.

Kyalite: home to Australia's largest commercial pistachio nut farm and popular with campers and anglers; 36 km S.

Redbank Weir: barbecues and picnics; Homebush–Oxley Rd; 58 km N.

Fishing spots near town

Balranald 35 km

The drive from the Monaro to Wagga Wagga and on to Balranald gives some idea of the Murrumbidgee’s length and also of how much a river can change over the course of its flow. Near Balranald, the river has been... Find out more

Tol Tol 64 km

I made my first serious Murray cod trip on the Murray River near Robinvale and for years was asked not to write about such a special stretch of river that produces a higher-than-average proportion of big cod. It... Find out more

Robinvale 73 km

We trolled at little more than a fast walking pace, the electric motor giving off a light humming noise. Behind the boat, a couple of large bibbed lures were swimming deep, about a metre off the bottom, their action... Find out more

Euston 75 km

Euston began as Boomiarcool Station in 1847, growing into a small township and subsequently a busy inland port, from which a fleet of paddlesteamers and barges transported the consignments of wool and wheat along the... Find out more

Boyanda 82 km

The red ochre cliff near the Boyanda grape farm is a popular launch site for anglers fishing the Murray River midway between Robinvale and the small horticultural town of Wemen. A track follows the river from Happy... Find out more

Swan Hill 83 km

From Mulwala to Swan Hill there are excellent fishing opportunities. Some of the top spots along this stretch include Barmah, Echuca and the famous Torrumbarry Weir. The huge Murray cod mounted near the park in Swan... Find out more

Eco-friendly activities around town

Wine-tasting - Robinvale 73 km

Robinvale Wines, near Robinvale, produces a wide variety of wines, certified organic and biodynamic, with no chemicals used.... Find out more

Golf courses around town

Murray Downs Golf & Country Club Resort 79 km

What follows is one of the success stories of golf along the Murray River. Set in the heart of Kidman Reid’s historic Murray Downs sheep station, the Murray Downs Golf & Country Club Resort was constructed... Find out more

Campsites around town

Walkool Junction camping area 30 km

This dispersed bush-camping area is signposted off the Murray Valley Hwy, 7 km north of Piambie. It was another of Thomas Mitchell’s stopovers on his ambitious trek down the Murray. Bring your own drinking water... Find out more

Passage Camp camping area 36 km

This was one of the places where Major Thomas Mitchell set up camp during his famous 1836 exploration of the country along the Murray River, a journey that prompted him to name what’s now Victorian terrain... Find out more

Nyah camping area 61 km

This camping area is beside the township of Nyah, where the Murray River broadens its banks for a few kilometres. South-east of here, down the Murray Valley Hwy, is Tyntyndyer Homestead, which has the dubious honour of... Find out more

Vinifera camping area 64 km

The Vinifera Reserve is shared by forests of black box and river red gum, and is a pleasant place for a lazy picnic. The camping area is located about 20 km north of Swan Hill, south of Nyah near the town of Vinifera... Find out more

HillTop Resort 72 km

Travel 5 km north of Swan Hill on the Murray Valley Hwy and, at Tyntynder South, you’ll find the 13 ha HillTop Resort. There are several dozen spots here for tents and camper vans, with the rest of the complex... Find out more

Euston Regional Park 78 km

Close to the town of Euston on the Sturt Hwy, this park can be accessed via Tapalin Mail Rd off the highway. Bring your own everything and boil/treat the river water before drinking.... Find out more

Lake Boga Caravan Park 92 km

Lake Boga is part of a patchwork of lakes on either side of the Murray Valley Hwy to the north-west and south of Kerang. When water is plentiful, the Kerang Lakes, as they’re known, form a significant wetlands area... Find out more

The Paddlewheel camping area (bush camping) 95 km

This is the first riverside bush-camping area you come to if you’re driving into Murray–Kulkyne Park from the township of Wemen on Hattah–Robinvale Rd. Some of the protected species you may see when... Find out more

Jinkers Bend camping area (bush camping) 97 km

Jinkers Bend is another of the bush campsites alongside the Murray River in Hattah–Kulkyne. It’s situated off the River Track between the 2 other bush-camping options – Ki Bend to the south and Firemans... Find out more

Ki Bend camping area (bush camping) 97 km

If you’re into fishing and you have a NSW fishing licence, you’ll want to try one of the bush campsites down by the Murray River at Ki Bend. It’s one of 3 places offering riverside campsites between... Find out more

Caravan parks around town

Balranald Caravan Park 1 km

This is a good, grassy park on the north bank of the Murrumbidgee River within easy walking distance of the town centre. The park, adjacent to the bridge at the east end of town, is easily accessible from the Sturt... Find out more

Robinvale Riverside Caravan Park 73 km

The park is on the banks of the Murray River, just 1 km from the town centre. There is a large expanse of green lawn and shady river red gums. It is great for a few days at a budget price. Bookings are required in peak... Find out more

BIG4 Swan Hill 76 km

On the northern edge of town, this is a very good quality park that will satisfy the most fastidious traveller. The owner-operated establishment has a range of accommodation and good facilities including a six-hole golf... Find out more

Big4 Swan Hill Riverside Caravan Park 78 km

Within walking distance to the centre of town, and with large expanses of green lawn and a long frontage to the Murray River, this place boasts a heated pool, undercover barbecues and a well-stocked shop. Bookings are... Find out more

Lake Boga Caravan Park 92 km

Squeezed between the Murray Valley Highway and the shores of Lake Boga, this is ideal for an overnight stop or a restful few days; sailing, water-skiing and swimming are popular activities. The park has good basic... Find out more

Rest areas around town

Junction rest area 3 km

5km E of Balranald (R) or 128km W of Hay (L)

Just off the highway.

Mamanga camping area 5 km

T/O 3km E of Balranald (R) or 130km W of Hay (L)

Secluded area in the scrub 7km (partly unsealed) south of the highway in Yanga National Park.

Yanga Creek rest area 7 km

9km E of Balranald (R) or 124km W of Hay (L)

Well off the highway among a few trees.

Willows camping area 23 km

T/O 25km E of Balranald (R) or 108km W of Hay (L)

In the scrub 3km (unsealed) south of the highway in Yanga Conservation Park.

Passage camping area 35 km

T/O 51km SE of Robinvale (L) or 85km NW of Swan Hill (R)

Secluded area 5km (unsealed) north of the highway in Murray River Reserve. Good shade.

Boundary Bend East park area 37 km

46km E of Robinvale (L) or 55km NW of Wood Wood (R)

Adjacent to the highway. On a riverbank among some large trees.

Piangil North rest area 50 km

92km S of Robinvale (L) or 9km N of Wood Wood (R)

Just off the highway. On a riverbank under some shady trees.

Abbotts Tank rest area 53 km

27km E of Euston (L) or 53km W of Balranald (R)

Just off the highway among trees.

Wood Wood park area 55 km

At Wood Wood

Just off the highway on a riverbank.

Wood Wood camping area 55 km

T/O at Wood Wood

Just off the highway. Among trees on a riverbank in Nyah State Forest.

Bailey Plains rest area 56 km

31km E of Manangatang (R) or 9km W of Piangil (L)

Just off the highway among a few trees.

Nyah Forest camping area 60 km

T/O 6km S of Wood Wood (L) or 2km N of Nyah (R)

Under shady trees on a riverbank. Located 1km (unsealed) east of the highway via Byrnes La.

Nyah camping area 61 km

At Nyah

Large grassed area well off the highway via River St. Located at the recreation reserve behind the sporting complex.

Nyah park area 62 km

At Nyah

Adjacent to the highway. In the middle of town.

Lake Benanee rest area 64 km

16km E of Euston (R) or 64km W of Balranald (L)

Well off the highway on the shores of the lake.

Ravensworth rest area 67 km

78km E of Balranald (L) or 55km W of Hay (L)

Just off the highway on both sides.

Lake Boga park area 90 km

At Lake Boga

On the shores of the lake via Jacaranda Cres.

Pevensey rest area 92 km

104km E of Balranald (R) or 29km W of Hay (L)

Just off the highway among a few trees.

Mail Route rest area 96 km

48km SE of Gol Gol (R) or 24km NW of Euston (L)

Just off the highway surrounded by scrub.

What's on around town

Balranald Cup: horserace; Feb/Mar.

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