Country music capital Tamworth, in north-west NSW, is a vibrant centre for the spectacular surrounding countryside, with great local produce, up-close wildlife encounters and cultural sights that will keep visitors of all ages entertained.
The Pacific Highway, hugging the NSW east coast, has traditionally been the most favoured route for families driving between Sydney and Brisbane. But the rural landscapes and historic towns along the New England Highway are well worth exploring. Here are 5 great reasons to take the inland route on your next family holiday and enjoy a perfect pit stop in the heart of the region – Tamworth!
1. It’s the buzzing centre of beautiful New England
With spectacular natural surrounds and quaint historic towns, the New England region is a destination in itself. To the south of Tamworth lies the former gold mining town of Nundle where you can try your hand at gold panning, then take a stroll around the waters of nearby Sheba Dams, renowned for its rainbow trout fishing and birdlife. Go bushwalking along the trails of Warrabah National Park and visit beautiful Horton Falls, or soak up the sweeping views from the Hanging Rock Lookout.
2. Tamworth’s culture is more than just country music
Tamworth is synonymous with country music – but if country music isn’t your thing, never fear! This town has more than its fair share of fantastic family-friendly cultural attractions to discover.
Don’t miss a visit to the Tamworth Regional Gallery (one of the oldest galleries in NSW) where the Kid’s Art Trail will engage little ones, or check out the steam engines at the Tamworth Powerstation Museum celebrating this city as the first to be lit by municipal street lighting back in 1888!
And if you want a little taste of country music fever, head to the Big Golden Guitar, the country music-inspired wax museum, or you can take a wander through beautiful Bicentennial Park where busts of some of Australia’s most legendary country musicians line the walkways.
3. Let loose at the Tamworth Regional Playground
The Tamworth Regional Playground in Bicentennial Park boasts sand pits, zip lines, tunnel slides and climbing structures, as well as a splash pad wetzone and a soft fall area just for little ones, and you can grab a coffee and relax at the adjacent Hopscotch Restaurant and Bar.
4. Get up-close with the local wildlife
Tamworth Marsupial Park combines a hands-on wildlife experience with an Adventure Playground designed by the local kids. The playground is divided into an area for under 5s and an older children’s area (with a native animal theme throughout) with free BBQs, perfect for a picnic.
You can hand-feed kangaroos, get up close to native birds in the free flight aviary, and explore the nearby botanical gardens.
Explore the magnificent Cockburn Ranges on scenic horse rides with Kootingal Horse Riding Adventures. They cater to all experience levels and also offer pony rides for younger children.
5. Bunk down at family-friendly accommodation
Tamworth has a great selection of accommodation, and when it comes to family- friendly options, the tranquil setting of Paradise Tourist Park, on the Peel River, ticks all the right boxes. With accommodation to suit all budgets and style of travellers – powered caravan sites, cabins and luxury villas – plus a playground, swimming pool and recreation hall, Paradise Tourist Park is just a short walk from Tamworth city centre.
So what are you waiting for? Bundle up the family and hit the road to Tamworth to discover for yourselves just what the ‘buzz’ is all about!