Experience nature in Armidale
New England’s national parks boast an extensive gorge wilderness with over 500 kilometres of wild and scenic rivers. Discover a unique natural playground with magnificent waterfalls, rainforests and exotic flora and fauna.
Imagine a place where the geology and biodiversity is unique, where you can climb giant rock formations, stroll through rainforests, encounter rare wildlife, watch powerful waterfalls, camp in the wilderness, paddle wild rivers, and find endless breathtaking views. This is all part of the New England experience – there are hundreds of thousands of hectares of national parks and state forests to explore.
From Point Lookout in the New England National Park, you can gaze out in all directions across unspoilt wilderness and the Bellingen Valley all the way to the Pacific Ocean. Rock wallabies and lyrebirds are among the rare sights you can expect to encounter along the walking tracks that zigzag through the banksia and snow gum populated bush around the lookout.
Experience feature attractions
New England National Park
Cathedral Rock National Park
Gara Gorge lookout
Mother of Ducks Lagoon Nature Reserve
Little Llangothlin Nature Reserve
Oxley Wild Rivers National Park
Experience using mobile apps
Discover your next destination and get inspired by Cya On The Road. Your mobile phone is now your personal tour guide that takes you to hundreds of thousands of locals favourite spots and hidden gems, from big cities to regional towns, and tells you the fascinating behind the scene stories.
Experience our region’s history and culture through Soundtrails – self-paced locative audio walks delivered to you through an interactive app platform suitable for most mobile devices.
Get inspired through our stories
Natural Wonders & Gorgeous Gorges in New England High Country
Imagine a place where you can climb giant granite rock formations, stroll through rainforests, encounter rare wildlife, watch powerful waterfalls, camp in the wilderness, paddle wild rivers and take in breathtaking views from one of the tallest points of the Great Dividing Range. This is all part of the New…Read story titled Natural Wonders & Gorgeous Gorges in New England High Country
Exploring Waterfalls in New England High Country
The Waterfall Way is one of the main arteries into New England from the east, and it’s aptly named. Weaving through a number of the high country’s world-class national parks, this road promises to defy the advice of 90s pop culture and instead go chasing waterfalls. Here’s our pick of…Read story titled Exploring Waterfalls in New England High Country
Exploring National Parks around Armidale
In the depths of winter, mist can drape New England National Park like a chiffon veil, settling silently in the valleys and lingering for hours. Moss-covered Antarctic beech, which have thrived on the Great Dividing Range for aeons, assume a ghostly appearance on such mornings – and deep within the…Read story titled Exploring National Parks around Armidale
Exploring Tourist Drive 19
If you find yourself in Armidale or Uralla needing to while away a few hours, Tourist Drive 19 is for you. It comprises 86km of country back roads, including 20km unsealed, and will easily fill half a day or more. You’ll need to pack walking shoes, a picnic spread, a…Read story titled Exploring Tourist Drive 19
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Much of New England National Park is World Heritage listed, protecting a signiﬁcant expanse of Antarctic beech rainforest that has thrived on the edge of the Great Dividing Range here for eons. This is one of the very few places in the world where you can experience what the ancient supercontinent of Gondwana may have looked like.
The landscape in the Cathedral Rock National Park, an hour’s drive east of Armidale, offers a different spectacle. Here, there are a couple of walking tracks for spying wildlife and lovely views, and a tumble of huge granite boulders provides bushwalkers with a novel obstacle course.
Hundreds of kilometres of waterways rage and meander through the Oxley Wild Rivers National Park, where huge tracts of magnificent wilderness are also World Heritage listed. This is where camping, trout fishing, kayaking, swimming, canyoning and abseiling in incredibly beautiful locations are major attractions.
Point Lookout in the New England National Park is the place to be for an unbeatable sunrise view and on a clear day you see out to the Pacific Ocean. If you are keen for a hike, Lyrebird Track will lead you to Wrights lookout, high up on an exposed basalt plateau. On a summer’s day, take a hike to Cascade Falls and enjoy a paddle in the fresh mountain streams.
Blue Hole is a popular swimming spot for day trips and the Threlfall Walking track is a pleasant 5.5km loop that has scenic views and a chance to see the historic hydro-electric scheme. Or, you can spend several days following the Bicentennial National Trail on foot, horseback or mountain bike through rugged country, camping in historic stockmen’s huts along the way.
Rivers meandering through the eastern fringe of the tablelands have created a unique landscape of deep gorges and dramatic waterfalls. Wollomombi Falls, east of Armidale in the Oxley Wild Rivers National Park is one of several must-sees. These are the highest waterfalls in New South Wales. If you’re fit, you can tackle the track that descends the steep fern-clad gully there to swim in the crystal-clear waterholes downstream. Walk the Wollomombi Gorge’s rim-top tracks for fabulous views in all directions, keeping an eye out for rare wallabies as you make your way through the bush. Another must-see is Dangar Falls, reached via TD 19 along Dangarsleigh road, 21 km south of Armidale.
A particularly exhilarating way to experience the wonders of the gorge country is on board a Fleet Helicopters’ scenic tour. As the chopper swoops down the precipitous canyons, the bird’s eye view of dry rainforest, flowing rivers and cascading waterfalls is amazing. Adventurous types can be dropped in the heart of this wild rugged country where camping, hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, kayaking and fishing are popular pursuits.
If being dropped by helicopter in a remote riverbed isn’t your thing, all these pursuits can be enjoyed by following walking tracks of varying levels of difficulty in the national parks. You’ll find easily accessible lookouts and pretty picnic and overnight camping spots near most of the major waterfalls.