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Uralla

 

Uralla is situated half way between Sydney and Brisbane. Uralla, in the Anaiwan tongue, means "a special meeting place". Situated in the Goldfields, the creeks still yield that elusive mineral if you are prepared to pan for it. There are still some locals that glean a living from their labour.

 

Uralla has settled down to the modern day pace of country life and looks forward to greeting those visitors who choose to stay and explore our beautiful town.

 

In all probability, the last time Uralla saw a flurry of activity was back in the last century when the notorious bushranger Thunderbolt led the NSW constabulary on a merry dance through the New England countryside.

 

It was at Kentucky Creek just south of Uralla where they finally got the man who had for years been causing havoc on the New England highways and byways, giving rise to the area's unofficial title of 'Thunder-bolt Country'.

 

There's Thunderbolt's statue in the centre of town.  Thunderbolt's Rock just out of town and an exhibition of artworks depicting Thunderbolt's last day on permanent display in the Old McCrossin's Mill Museum.

 

Dead bushrangers and historic buildings notwithstanding, Uralla boasts more than its fair share of natural and man-made attractions for a town of this size.

 

The gently rolling hills and English-style greenery of the New England plateau provide the perfect setting for a town that truly cherishes its heritage. Many of the quaint cottages, stately country manors and main street shops date back to the 1800s when gold was discovered in them thar hills and more than 5000 prospectors flocked to the region in search of fame and fortune.

 

Unlike most former gold rush towns, Uralla held onto its town status and main-tained the old buildings long after the glitter had gone, and today it embodies the country lifestyle where everybody knows their neighbours and no-one worries too much about locking their doors.

 

While the locals meet and greet each other in the main shopping street, visitors meander in and out of craft shops, art galleries, antique stores cafes and restaurants. Uralla boasts renowned antiquarian book-shops and three or four antique emporiums where you could easily browse among the treasures for several hours or just take some time to relax and enjoy a latté or cappuccino accompanied with a delicious cake or snack.

 

After a quiet ale or two in one of the historic pubs, you can step back in time at the old Brass and Iron Lace Foundry built in 1872, where much of Sydney's iron lace was produced in years gone by.  The Foundry is still operating as a commercial business, using the original tools and methods and visitors are welcome to stand and watch while the blacksmith swings hi hammer and stokes up the coal fires.

For those who prefer a more action and adventure-driven holiday, the countryside surrounding Uralla offers plenty of activity. There are no less than twenty National Parks within a two-hour drive of Uralla, providing endless opportunities for bushwalking, horse riding, bird watching, fishing, camping and caravanning.

 

A public fossicking area just out of town is a huge drawcard for families. There's still alluvial gold to be found and the kids will happily spend hours panning along the creek bed. Fossicking equipment can be hired at the Uralla Visitor Information Centre.

 

Bird watching is another popular activity in the region and Dangar's Lagoon is just south of town and a haven for a large variety of waterbirds. It is also equipped with a public bird hide so all the family can partici-pate.

 

On the western side of town Mt Yarrowyck Reserve takes you even further back in time to a rock cavern decorated with ancient aboriginal paintings. A 3-km walking track loop starts at the picnic area and incorporates a number of interesting natural features en route to the paintings which were possibly designed to tell nomadic travellers what type of food they would find in the area.

 

What makes this particular corner of New England so spectacular, is its proximity to the eastern escarpment of the Great Dividing Range where the high country pastures suddenly drop away into a series of dramatic gorges.

 

Dangar's Gorge and the breathtaking falls which tumble down the granite cliff face are just 35 kms from the centre of Uralla, they are surrounded by picnic areas, camping sites and over 20 kms of walking tracks.

 

Take a detour via Scenic route 19 to Gostwyck Chapel, which looks as though its been plucked from an English village and replanted in country NSW. Close by is one of Australia's oldest sheep shearing sheds, built in 1869 and still in use today. The Deeargee Woolshed may only be viewed from the roadside but is still a spectacular sight not to be missed.

 

As the halfway point between Brisbane and Sydney on the New England Highway, Uralla and the surrounding district make an ideal stopover point or short-break getaway destination. Accommodation in town ranges from camping sites and caravan parks through to historic pubs and modern motels. Alternatively, you can get right into the country lifestyle by staying on farmstay or B&B properties.

 Visitor Information Centre Contact Details

 
 

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