Trips & Journeys

Newell Highway

Travel through the heart of NSW.

11 Days | 937km
By Travel In | 5th April 2016

The Newell Highway is the longest running highway in New South Wales, stretching over 1060km from the Victorian border at Tocumwal to the Queensland border at Goondiwindi. The highway runs parallel to the eastern coast about 400 kilometres inland, traversing NSW from end to end as it passes through a wide range of terrain. Carrying the National Highway 39 shield for its entire length, the Newell Highway is named after H.H Newell, the NSW Commissioner of Main Roads from 1932 until 1941.

The Newell is a premier touring route, providing travellers with the opportunity to explore the unique country towns and attractions along the way. The region offers wide open spaces, pristine national parks and river systems, fresh produce bursting with flavour and wines recognised as some of the world’s best.

From Goondiwindi in the north to Tocumwal on the Murray River in the south, this inland route traverses an interesting mix of forests, farmlands, astronomical attractions and art.

Day One

Tocumwal

Situated on the border of NSW and Victoria, Tocumwal is a small country town with a big personality. Owing to its picturesque position on the banks of the Murray River, Tocumwal is popular with campers, and offers an abundance of bushwalking, fishing, bird watching, boating and swimming opportunities. At just three hours from Melbourne, Tocumwal is easy to reach and the ideal starting point for any Newell Highway adventure.

STAY

Enjoy peace and quiet in cabin style accommodation at the Boomerang Way Caravan Park.

Relax in a charming period home circa 1916 at Langford House B&B.

Experience country hospitality at its finest at the family operated Bridge Motor Inn.

EAT

Celebrate everyone’s favourite berry at The Big Strawberry.

Enjoy a top notch counter meal at the Terminus Hotel.

Enjoy a light lunch and a fresh coffee at Chrissie’s Book Lounge.

DO

Step back in time and explore cars and antiques at Chrysties Museum.

Visit the impressive blowhole reserve and see the deep waterhole that is sacred to the local Aboriginals.

Have a hit of golf at the Tocumwal Golf Club.

Day Two

Jerilderie
41 mins 57.7km

Famous for being the only place in NSW visited by Ned Kelly and his gang, Jerilderie is an historic town bursting with country charm. The town offers a relaxed and welcoming vibe, with good old fashioned country hospitality right at the forefront. Be sure to stop by for an afternoon or a night on your journey along the Newell Highway.

STAY 

Sleep on the banks of the Billabong Creek at the delightful Do Book Inn.

Those looking for a round of golf will relish the convenience of the Fairways Bed and Breakfast.

Centrally located, Jerilderie Motel and Caravan Park offers clean and comfortable accommodation.

EAT

Visit one of Australia’s oldest organic wineries at Organic One.

Enjoy quality pub fare at the Jerilderie Hotel.

Stop by Jerilderie Bakery for some old fashioned country baked goods.

DO

Explore the New Kelly Raid Trail on the self-guided tour of the 16 sites visited by Ned Kelly in 1879.

Keep the kids entertained at the Jerilderie Miniature Steam Railway Track.

Visit the immense Steel Wings windmill, which was constructed in the 1900s and is today one of only two of its kind in the world.

Day Three

Narrandera
1 hr 5 mins 108km

The picturesque town of Narrandera is warm and inviting, offering an abundance of natural beauty and hidden gems.

STAY 

Experience old school country pub hospitality at the Murrumbidgee Hotel.

Stay in a resort style bed and breakfast at the charming Garden Room Bed and Breakfast.

Set yourself up in bush surrounds at the Narrandera Caravan Park.

EAT

Enjoy a quality pub meal at the Charles Sturt Hotel.

Savour a quality breakfast at Trent’s Coffee House.

DO

Slip and slide at the Lake Talbot Aquatic Park speed down the Rampage Slide.

Sandhills Artefacts is the tin shed workshop of local Wiradjuri didgeridoo and boomerang maker, Michael Lyons, and well worth a visit.

Visit an important habitat for birds, frogs, reptiles, insects and mammals at the Narrandera Wetlands.

Day Four

West Wyalong
1 hr 23 mins 136km

The vibrant town of West Wyalong sits within the Bland Shire of the Riverina region of NSW. The town has a rich history steeped in goldmining, yet also offers a range of modern attractions and exciting annual events that make West Wyalong a fascinating area to explore.

STAY

Stay in the heart of town at the Top Town Motel.

Enjoy comfortable accommodation at the owner operated Country Roads Motor Inn.

EAT

Savour some of the best coffee in West Wyalong at Café Peckish.

Enjoy some mouth-watering traditional dishes and creative cuisine at the Colonial Steakhouse.

Experience the flavours and spice of fresh Thai and Chinese cuisines at the Jade Teahouse Restaurant.

DO

Located in the Historic Court House, the Wyalong Museum offers a broad range of exhibits, including a mock court room.

View the wide range of unique handmade glass items at glass artist Elaine Marshall’s gallery, Exclusive Hot Glass Gallery.

Day Five

Forbes
1 hr 7 mins 104km

Situated on the Lachlan River in the heart of the Lachlan Valley, Forbes is an exciting country town boasting a rich history. The town features a wide range of impressive heritage buildings and a beautiful natural environment, with Lake Forbes providing the ideal space to relax and recharge the batteries.

STAY

Enjoy family friendly accommodation at the BIG4 Forbes Holiday Park.

Rest your head at the fully self-contained Hillview Bed and Breakfast.

Escape to idyllic surrounds at the luxurious Girragirra Retreat.

EAT

Savour a delicious home cooked meal at Esme’s Coffee Shop.

Enjoy a quality counter meal at Forbes Inn Hotel.

DO

Experience a fascinating slice of Australian history with a visit to the Forbes Cemetery and Ben Hall’s gravesite.

View a vast collection of meticulously restored motor cars at McFeeter’s Motor Museum.

Wander along the Forbes Heritage Trail and admire the town’s historical churches, hotels and buildings.

Day Six

Parkes
27 mins 33.7km

Parkes fills a truly surprising pocket of NSW, with this country town boasting a range of unique events and attractions. Whether you’re fascinated by history, nature, science or culture, Parkes has something for everyone.

STAY

Stay in a renovated old convent at the Old Parkes Convent B&B.

Enjoy traditional country hospitality at Parkes Hotel.

Relax in well-appointed sophistication at Station Motel Parkes.

EAT

Savour your morning coffee at Café’n’Ate.

Enjoy a pub meal at Broadway Hotel.

Indulge in some quality Italian cooking at Bellas Café Espresso and Italian Restaurant.

DO

Visit the set of the Australian flick ‘The Dish’ with a visit to the iconic CSIRO Parkes Radio Telescope.

Explore four unique museums, including an Elvis exhibit and a unique cars exhibit, at the Henry Parkes Centre.

Gaze upon the Sir Henry Parkes Statue, a tribute to the town’s namesake.

Day Seven

Dubbo
1 hr 22 mins 120km

As the unofficial capital of NSW’s central region, Dubbo is a veritable playground of fascinating attractions. From its vantage point on the majestic Macquarie River, this historic city provides the perfect country respite, with an endless number of things to see and do for all ages.

STAY

Stay by the river at the luxurious Boat House Villa.

Soak up the country charm at the idyllic Outback Cellar.

Wake up to a lion’s roar at the incredible Zoofari Lodge.

EAT

Enjoy Spanish cuisine at its finest at Two Doors Tapas and Wine Bar.

Savour the flavours of authentic Thai dishes at Westbury Thai.

Start your day the right way with breakfast at Press Café.

DO

Lose yourself in the incredible Taronga Western Plains Zoo.

Get a taste for days gone by at the fascinating yet spooky Old Dubbo Gaol.

Relax in idyllic surrounds at the peaceful Shoyoen Japanese Garden.

Day Eight

Gilgandra
43 mins 64.7km

Known as the town of windmills and home of the coo-ees, Gilgandra is an historical town located approximately half way between Melbourne and Brisbane, at the junction of the Newell, Oxley and Castlereagh Highways. With a rich Aboriginal and European history, Gilgandra offers visitors the opportunity to discover a place that is uniquely Australian, yet it also offers much to take your breath away.

STAY

Rest peacefully at the Chinnock Bed and Breakfast.

Relax in comfort at the Gilgandra Caravan Park.

Enjoy clean and comfortable accommodation at the Alfa Motel.

EAT

Coffee and art come together rat the Next Grind Coffee and Gallery.

Enjoy country baking at its best at the Rock Cake Bakery.

DO 

Identified by the large windmill at the front of the building, the Gilgandra Rural Museum houses a variety of intriguing historical items, including agricultural machinery, local photographs, musical instruments, sewing machines, books and more.

The ‘Windmill Walk’ winds along the peaceful Castlereagh River, and takes you past historic windmills and majestic native trees.

To observe flora of a different kind, Orana Cactus World exhibits 800 to 900 different species of cacti from all around the world.

Day Nine

Warrumbungle Shire
1 hr 2 mins 94.4km

Located in the central western region of NSW, the Warrumbungle Shire is a place of natural beauty and big adventure. The picturesque region straddles the Newell Highway, making it incredibly easy for tourers to visit each of the unique towns scattered throughout the area. Whether you’re excited by astronomy, wildlife, art or gourmet delights, the Warrumbungle Shire will not disappoint.

STAY

Spend the night in a country mud brick cottage at Coonandry Cottage in Connabarabran.

Enjoy peace and quiet at the Warrumbungles Mountain Motel.

EAT

Savour wood fired pizzas at Blue Wren Café.

Enjoy homemade cakes and fine coffee at Cardian’s Coffee Lounge.

DO

Offering incredible views and unbeatable bush walking opportunities, the Warrumbungle National Park is a fantastic destination for a day trip, picnic lunch or overnight camp. The park is also home to the iconic Breadknife and Belougery Split Rock, which in themselves are well worth the trip.

Visit the Siding Spring Observatory, Australia’s premier optical and infrared observatory.

Take a stroll through the incredible, rugged Pilliga Forest, and take a tour of the incredible Sandstone Caves and the Sculptures in the Scrub.

Day Ten

Narrabri
1 hr 15 mins 120km

At the junction of the Newell Highway and the Kamilaroi Highway, Narrabri is the ideal launching pad from which to explore all this region has to offer, such as spectacular scenery and fascinating history.

STAY

Relax in clean and affordable accommodation at the Narrabri Big Sky Caravan Park.

Enjoy modern and luxurious motel accommodation at the Club Motor Inn Narrabri.

Sleep in the wilderness at the Mount Kaputar National Park Cabins.

EAT

Dine at the Crossing Theatre Restaurant.

Enjoy a hearty pub feed at the Namoi Hotel.

DO

Experience life behind bars and step back in time at the Old Gaol Heritage Museum.

Explore the spectacular Mount Kaputar National Park, which was created between 17 and 21 million years ago.

Day Eleven

Moree
1 hr 6 mins 100km

Moree is a relaxed and inviting region of north-eastern New South Wales. Known as the spa capital of Australia, Moree is the perfect place to relax, rejuvenate and be inspired.

STAY

Stay at the Artesian Spa Motel and take advantage of the deluxe rooms, spa baths and licensed restaurant.

Base yourself in the town centre at Maria Motel.

Experience affordable quality accommodation at the Budget Winchester Motel.

EAT

Visit the Woolaway Wines Bar and Cellar Door to enjoy an afternoon of wine tasting or tea.

Make a reservation at the award winning New Bo Wa Chinese Restaurant.

DO

Relax at the newly renovated Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre, where naturally filtered mineral water gently soothes and revitalises weary travellers.

Visit the historic Moree Plains Gallery, which promotes the spectacular artworks of local Aboriginal artists and provides a deeper understanding of contemporary indigenous life.

Enjoy a round of golf at the beautiful Moree Golf Club.