This is gemstone country, but they’re not the only things that gleam in this historic region of north-western NSW. A fascinating Celtic past (Glen Innes’ Standing Stones pay homage to this heritage), distinct seasons, stunning national parks marked by tracts of ancient Gondwana rainforest, and a growing contingent of artisanal producers add up to an unforgettable experience. Are you ready to shine?
The soil around Glen Innes and Inverell is rich with gems like sapphires, emeralds, quartz, garnets and citrine. Pick up a fossicking map from information centres in Glen Innes, Inverell, Warialda and Bingara and try your luck. The Emmaville Mining Museum houses a great collection of local specimens and memorabilia.
Visit Inverell Pioneer Villagewhere historic buildings and homes dating from 1841 are set in peaceful landscaped gardens. You’ll find an original blacksmith’s shop, mining museum and more. You can even look for sapphires in the wash pond. Celebrate the region’s Celtic roots at the Australian Celtic Festival in May.
A scenic drive north of Glen Innes is the beautiful town of Tenterfield, known as the birthplace of Australia after Sir Henry Parkes’ famous 1889 speech here calling on the colonies to unite. You can visit the Sir Henry Parkes Memorial School of Arts where he gave the Tenterfield Oration.
Glen Innes Town Hall, Glen Innes
Explore World Heritage wonders
Rich with natural beauty, the New England region is home to national parks in the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area. Explore on walking tracks in the Washpool National Park and the Gibraltar Range National Park.
Destination NSW acknowledges and respects Aboriginal people as the state’s first people and nations and recognises Aboriginal people as the Traditional Owners and occupants of New South Wales land and water.