The thrill ofAdventure

Sport and Adventure in Armidale

Sport is an integral part of life in Armidale. From rugby matches, mountain biking and all sorts of competitive and adventurous pursuits to leisurely games of golf and tennis, there’s something for everyone.

SportUNE, the University of New England’s state-of-the-art facilities including a gym, climbing wall, pool, playing fields and tennis and squash courts, is open to visitors and the wider community seven days a week. The international standard Mountain bike tracks will host the World Endurance Mountain Bike events (WEMBO) in 2023.

Experience feature attractions


Come and explore a variety of routes for mixed-terrain cycling around Armidale, ranging from easy to epic! Designed mostly for gravel bikes, the routes can also be enjoyed on mountain bikes, or shorter routes with modern road bikes.
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Fleet Adventures

Fleet Adventures offer Scenic Flights, Helicopter Adventures and Warbird Adventure Flights. Their unique scenic flights and adventures take place over the spectacular Oxley Wild Rivers Gorges. These include the Gorge Discovery and Flight of the Ten Gorges. Fleet Warbirds offers Warbird Adventure Flights in either a T6 Texan or the exhilarating L39 Albatross Jet over the same spectacular gorge country. If you want to spice things up, aerobatics are also offered in these awesome flying machines, so you’ll feel the ‘G’ forces just like the wartime pilots did back in the day. People from all walks of life are now able to experience some of the deepest gorges and least known terrain in Australia.
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Dumaresq Dam Reserve

Dumaresq Dam was built between 1896 and 1898 and was Armidale’s water supply until 1968 when Malpas Dam was completed. It is now set aside as a recreation reserve with a 2.5-kilometre walking track that passes through eucalypt woodland on its way around the dam. As a swimming spot, it is fantastic, with plenty of space to stretch the arm. Swimming a circuit will give you a bit more than one kilometre to think. Dumaresq Dam is circled by a pleasant 2.5-kilometre walking track that passes below the dam wall. It is an easy walk, though rock-hopping is required for one section. A new mountain biking track links to nearby Mount Duval. Both the woodland and the dam offer excellent opportunities for bird watching, and for anglers, the dam is stocked with trout, and occasionally bass. There is a boat ramp for canoes and kayaks, but petrol boats are not allowed. In summer there are plenty of blackberries to pick. Water temperature drops below 20 degrees in April or May. For cold-water lovers, the temperature in winter is around 5 degrees, and there are occasional chances for a snow swim.
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Mountain Bike Trails Armidale

With its stunning scenery, bike-friendly culture and diversity of trails, Armidale is a great place to ride. From fast, flowing 29er heaven, to technical all-mountain and downhill runs, the region is fast becoming known as ‘must ride’ MTB destination. This reputation has no doubt been earned due to the hard work of the local club; New England Mountain Bikers (NEMTB), whose members over the years have designed and built some truly first-class mountain bike specific tracks in the Armidale State Forest, Fat Tyre Farm, UNE and in the city at Kookaburra Crest. With plenty to challenge novice and experienced riders alike, the trails mix fast single track with enough natural and man-made technical obstacles scattered around various the A and B lines to keep things interesting.
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Deano’s Smoked Trout Farm “Ardrossan”

Deano’s Springwater Smoked Trout Farm “Ardrossan” is set amongst rolling hills in the Northern tablelands of NSW, the property consists of 300 acres of pristine countryside. The fish farm itself is around 10 hectares. “Ardrossan” provides powered and unpowered free camping sites with an onsite camp kitchen with two BBQs and shaded seating along side the recreational dam with new toilets and shower facilities. We have a tackle shop with fishing equipment for hire and freshly smoked trout and dip on offer to purchase. We now have 8 spring water growing ponds, each 35 metres square. The fish farm itself is stocked primarily with rainbow trout, as well as brown trout and Atlantic salmon. All our fish are grown in spring water and as they are in an outdoor environment, they ingest a natural healthy diet of insects and other nutrients, supplemented with organic pellets.
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New England Wilderness Walk

Descending over 1,000 metres from the edge of New England Tableland to the headwaters of Bellinger River, this multi-day walk invites experienced bush walkers on a journey through diverse wilderness. Best done over three days, this challenging walk follows the trail up to Wrights lookout. Enjoy the spectacular views before continuing along Snowy Range, then down to Sunday Creek. The next stage involves creek-walking and river crossings, so make sure you’re equipped with the right footwear. There are lots of opportunities for swimming and serene camping along the way. Once you reach the valley floor, you’ll wander along an old farm trail over grassy river flats, passing historic farmhouses and stockyards to remind you of the farming heritage here. The 33 kilometre walk finishes on Darkwood Road, but you can also extend your adventure by canoeing or kayaking down the river from Cool Creek Crossing.
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Tourist Drive 17

Wind along the picturesque Waterfall Way and through World Heritage listed national parks to the most spectacular gorges, waterfalls, crystal clear streams and views in the region. Tourist Drive 17 is named the Best of New England for good reason. From Armidale, the route takes you along the picturesque Waterfall Way (itself rated second only to the Great Ocean Road in Australia’s top drives) and through World Heritage-listed national parks to the most spectacular gorges, waterfalls, crystal clear streams and views in the region. Highlights of this trip include Gara Gorge and Wollomombi Falls in the Oxley Wild Rivers National Park, Point Lookout in the New England National Park, massive boulders in the Cathedral Rock National Park and Ebor Falls. You also pass through the once thriving mining towns of Hillgrove and Metz, visit a trout hatchery and stop by the calm waters of Malpas Dam.
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Tourist Drive 19

Starting in Armidale, visit the New England Regional Art Museum where you can take in an outstanding permanent collection from four major artists. Then call into the Aboriginal Cultural Centre and Keeping Place where you can explore the rich Aboriginal culture through viewing the art gallery, musical section, tools and weaponry, history room, bush tucker walk and the archaeological section. Next stop is Petersons Guesthouse and Winery, just out of town. Set on the historic property of ‘Palmerston’, the Peterson family has established an award-winning guesthouse and cellar door. Continue on and follow the signs to Dangars Gorge. The spectacular gorge country is believed to have been formed over the last 12 to 15 million years as the rivers and streams cut their way down through the rock that forms the New England Plateau. Dangars Falls are spectacular after rain. After leaving Dangars Gorge, turn left into Black Lane and you’ll drive through typical New England farming country and you’ll come to the idyllic country town of Uralla with its heritage streetscape, unique shops, galleries and museums. Return to Armidale on the New England Highway a short 15 minute drive.
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Seasonal cricket, football, netball, rugby and tennis are popular with all ages, with competition games typically held on Saturdays and casual games on the go at other times.

The local hockey competition attracts a crowd of young (and older) players who, even during extreme winter conditions, such as sleet and driving rain, play on thanks to the campus’ top-notch synthetic fields.

You don’t have to be Tiger Woods to tee off at the picturesque golf courses in Armidale and Guyra and on a glorious day there’s really no better place for a visiting golf enthusiast to be. At the Armidale Golf Club, for instance, everyone is welcome to play social or competition rounds on the magnificent 18-hole championship course surrounded by native bushland. This course, with 25 bunkers protecting the greens, is a challenge for all golfers. The Guyra 18 hole course is set around the Mother of Ducks Lagoon, a nature reserve for migrating birds, quite a spectacular backdrop for this scenic golf course.

Out in the gorges and national parks, hiking, rock climbing and abseiling expeditions range from easy to difficult, and kayaking down the rivers can be a wild ride, particularly after heavy rains. If calmer waters are more your thing, then you’ll find Dumaresq Dam is a peaceful spot to paddle, or head to Malpas Dam, home to the New England Sailing Club and where locals race sailboats on Sundays during summer.