Backtrack to the outback
The Kidman Way
Welcome to Murrumbidgee
Experience the MAGIC that is Murrumbidgee Council. The three townships that form Murrumbidgee Council welcome travellers taking the Backtrack to the Outback to rest, relax and play.
The historic streetscapes and visitor amenities of Jerilderie hold pride of place as the start or finish of an outback adventure of ‘Bucket List’ proportions. Coming from the south, the Kidman Way turn-off lies just north of the township on the Newell Highway. From this point, sweeping plains, wide skies and stretches of well-maintained sealed road provide safe travelling as you discover the unique beauty of outback New South Wales.
The irrigation township of Coleambally lies just 70kms north along the Kidman Way from Jerilderie. Birdlife abounds. Cotton and rice make for gold and green vistas. Travel a further 32kms and you will discover the beauty of the riverside township of Darlington Point. Murrumbidgee Council is RV Friendly, with accommodation choices from free camping and the convenience of caravan parks, to motel, bed and breakfast and self-contained accommodation. Creekside or riverside the magic of Murrumbidgee tempts an extended stay.
Visitors flock from near and far to visit the famous Altina Wildlife Park. Located on the Sturt Highway, you’ll have a fabulous zoo-safari experience like no other. Enjoy the Zoo-fari like no other, meet the animals up close and personal with your guide whilst travelling in style on personalised horse drawn or motorised carts. Altina’s guides take all visitors around the park to meet the animals during their daily feed times to see these magnificent animals closer than you ever thought possible. The guided tour around the park goes for 2.5 hours and is the only way to see Altina’s animals, spots fill up fast so be sure to book for your experience of a lifetime.
The Ned Kelly Raid Trail leads visitors around the various sites where Ned Kelly and his gang captured the town during the raid on Jerilderie in February 1879. During the raid the gang robbed the local bank of 2,000 pounds. Here, Ned gave his Jerilderie Letter to the bank’s accountant for publication as well as printing in the Jerilderie Gazette. It outlined Kelly’s defence of the Gang’s actions at Stringybark Creek, but was not published until after Kelly’s death. After Beechworth Victoria, Jerilderie has the most Kelly-related buildings and sites, including the Post and Telegraph Office which was disabled by the gang to prevent news of their robbery spreading. A walking “raid trail” map is available. Call into Sticky Fingers Candy Shop to pick one up.
This is a very enjoyable walk on the south side of the Murrumbidgee River. The track was developed in close consultation with Aboriginal elders. It starts at Fig Tree Park and meanders for 1.8 km beside the river through red river gum and black box forests. It finishes at the clay banks, known by the locals as the ‘Bunyip hole’. The bunyip is an mythological aboriginal creature who lives in deep water. It resembles a large black hairy dog with long pointy ears, big teeth and a loud howl. Keep an eye out for it!
Situated at Luke Park adjacent to Lake Jerilderie, this structure is truly a magnificent sight. Made in Sydney in 1909 -1910, the windmill was erected at Goolgumbla Station and used for stock and domestic supplies. Due to wind damage it was rendered unserviceable until a Local Restoration Committee resurrected it in its present position in 1979. It stands 50 feet (15.24 metres) tall, has a wheel diameter of 25 foot (7.62 metres) and a tail length of 24 foot (7.315 metres).
Part of the Murrumbidgee Valley Regional Park, the Willbriggie Regional Park offers access to the Murrumbidgee River from both sides of the river around Darlington Point. For those that like to fish or head out on the water, there’s a boat ramp to access the river near the Darlington Point Bridge. South of the river, and accessible from the west side of Darlington Point township, adjacent to the Willbriggie Regional Park is the Goanna Walking Track.
Step back in time and experience yesteryear, hear an eye-witness account of the raid on the Bank of New South Wales in Jerilderie by Ned Kelly and his gang, soak up the nostalgia of standing where the Kelly Gang’s horses were shod in ‘The Ned Kelly Blacksmith Shop’. A collection of Australiana, fishing and blacksmithing memorabilia, souvenirs and bric-a-brac are available. Open by appointment: 0428 861513, Powell Street Jerilderie
The unique Coleambally Water Tower, rises high above the town skyline like a welcome glass of wine. At its base, more than 80,000 carefully placed bright and colourful mosaic tiles reveal the history of the town and it’s people. Ideally located on a small hill in the town centre, it’s a lovely spot to relax over a picnic.
The Bucyrus Erie dragline excavator, an amazing piece of construction machinery located in the Lions Park at the entrance to Coleambally (on the corner of Kingfisher Avenue and Kidman Way). It truly represents the beginnings of Coleambally, as without this excavator to construct the extensive irrigation system, the town would not exist. The enormous excavator is one of four machines that were imported from the USA and used to excavate the main channels in the Murray Valley.
Coleambally is home to the highly acclaimed and award winning Yarrow Park Olive Grove & Vineyard. This boutique family owned olive grove and vineyard has been operating since 2005 and is on Kyola Road off the Kidman Way, just a few kilometres from the town entranceway. Bruce and Sandra offer tastings from their cellar door in hand crafted wine, olive oil and vinegars, or book into a tour of the olive grove to learn about the fruiting stages and methods of harvest. Be sure to get a bottle of their award winning Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
Jerilderie welcomes visitors back-tracking to the outback. Rest up. Take the heritage precinct self-guided walk. Have a coffee at the home of Sir John Monash and explore the membrobilia. Discover the 1879 exploits of Ned and the Kelly Gang. Read Ned’s manifesto The Jerilderie Letter. Visit the Royal Mail Hotel where the Gang held local citizenry captive, outwitted the constabulary, and plundered the bank vault. The Printery, Telegraph Office and Undertakers premises take you back in time.
Rest with a stroll around Lake Jerilderie or take Horgan’s Walk by Billabong Creek, the world’s longest creek. Discover local Billabong tomato sauces or Bonics organic wines as you provision up at the IGA. Fuel up from one of our three competitive fuel stops. Relax with coffee, bakery, café or hotel fare. Play golf along the Billabong Creek with bar facilities and Chinese restaurant available at Jerilderie Sports Club, which is adjacent to the swimming pool, tennis, lawn bowls and community gym facilities. Stay in accommodation from motels, hotels, bed and breakfast, or the pristinely presented Jerilderie Caravan Park.
A warm welcome awaits in Coleambally. The town was established in 1968 to service the Coleambally Irrigation Area. Today it is a young and thriving community with community murals to see and excellent cellar doors to sample wines. Birdlife abounds around the township. Each street bears the name of local species including the rare brolga and bittern. From barley used for Crown Lager, to cotton, rice, popcorn and solar farming, Coleambally, is a highly productive area feeding New South Wales and beyond.
Relax in Brolga Place retail precinct. Central information boards explain diverse irrigated production. Take a stroll along walking tracks. View the unusual ‘wineglass’ water tower. Rest up in an RV Friendly Town with a great pub, a Community Club and cafes where the coffee is as inviting as the people. Stay in motel, caravan park or free camping accommodation.
Darlington Point on the Murrumbidgee River is a nature-based haven for travellers. Situated 3km north of the Kidman Way/Sturt Highway intersection, and 30km south of Griffith, it is the perfect place for lazy days of fishing, boating, walking and touring. Book a kayak tour this summer or a personalised tour of Altina wildlife park.
The Murrumbidgee River, Wilbriggie State Forest and areas of sheer natural beauty offer majestic river redgums and flowing water access.
Rest and browse giftware, grab a coffee, pasta or pizza. The Post Office and IGA are opposite the iconic Punt Hotel. Pick up hand-smoked meats at an authentic country butchery. The general store is multi-purpose from fuel to NRMA and a newsagency. Pharmacy and medical facilities offer travellers access to services. The Darlington Point Sports Club provides meals, bar, gaming, accommodation and a range of sporting options, while recently renovated Punt Hotel provide a friendly welcome and quality meals. The Riverside Caravan Park, free camping, and accommodation in Darlington Point make it a great place to stay as you travel the Kidman Way.
The highlight of any stay in Darlington Point is Altina Wildlife Park. The Zoo-fari like no other, meet the animals up close and personal with your guide whilst travelling in style on personalised horse drawn or motorised carts. Altina’s guides take all visitors around the park to meet the animals during their daily feed times to see these magnificent animals closer than you ever thought possible. The guided tour around the park goes for 2.5 hours and is the only way to see Altina’s animals, spots fill up fast so be sure to book for your experience of a lifetime. For something a little more exciting try our Behind The Scenes Encounters where you feed and have the ultimate Altina experience with your chosen animals.