The historic village of Bungendore is a charming rural escape located in a pretty green valley in southwest NSW near the national capital, Canberra. Those who linger in Bungendore will find everything from lovingly preserved colonial buildings to markets, wineries and incredible craftsmanship.
The Bungendore Wood Works Gallery is an institution, showcasing some of the best wood art and contemporary furniture in Australia. After exploring its collection, you can poke around the town’s galleries, antique stores and gift shops to unearth everything from great vintage vinyl to bric-a-brac, local art and pottery.
One of the most wonderful things to do in Bungendore is a self-guided walking tour around the town, which is dotted with heritage-listed buildings. Start your stroll in the western end of Malbon Street and head toward the 19th century red-brick railway station, which is a distinctive landmark in the townscape.
Bungendore also has great restaurants that will suit food-loving, wine-sipping crowds: navigate your way from lunch at Lark Hill Biodynamic Winery in the Canberra District Wine region to dinner at Le Tres Bon, a French bistro inside a farmhouse. The bistro doubles as a cooking school where you can learn how to make French fare.
You can also join a truffle hunt at Turalla Truffles alongside dogs who are trained to search for the prized black delicacy. The truffle farm is a short drive from the village near the southern end of the pancake-flat Lake George. You can also pick your own chestnuts at the family-operated Tweenhills Chestnuts every April.
The Southern Harvest Farmers Market sells a tempting range of sustainable regional produce as well as local gourmet treats every Saturday morning. Check out the events calendar for more markets, including Captains Flat Country Markets in Captains Flat, a 40-minute drive south of Bungendore.
Getting to Bungendore is easy. The drive from Canberra is 35 minutes and it's three hours from Sydney. You can take a scenic train trip from Sydney, too. Places to stay suit various budgets, from a classic country pub to the Carrington Inn, built in 1885, and the luxurious Old Stone House, built in 1861.