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The Queanbeyan region, which straddles NSW and the ACT, is well placed for those who want to escape from the city. Chart a course to Canberra Wine District, learn about the local history and heritage, and enjoy everything from back country bushwalking and biking to 4WD-ing in magnificent national parks.
Towns and villages
In riverside Queanbeyan, you will find fascinating museums, heritage walks and a vibrant arts program at The Q – Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre. Follow the walking and cycling trails through town, learn about local history at the Queanbeyan Museum and enjoy the vibrant Multicultural Festival in February.
The National Trust-classified town of Braidwood is a heritage treasure. The colonial streetscape has appeared as a backdrop in several iconic films – such as the 1970 Ned Kelly – and you can learn about the town in gold rush times in the Braidwood Museum. Nearby is beautiful Monga National Park, where you can walk the Penance Grove track.
Bungendore, located in a pretty green valley, is also worth a detour. The town is brimming with lovingly preserved colonial buildings, one of which houses the enticing Bungendore Wood Works Gallery. Some of Australia’s best wood art and contemporary furniture are displayed in the gallery.
Things to do
Keen anglers should visit Wamboin and throw a line in at Rainbow Springs Fly Fishing School, which offers courses for anglers of all levels. You can also try your luck at Googong Foreshores, which is stocked with rainbow trout, golden perch, Murray cod and silver perch, and is a pretty place to picnic.
Discover gold rush history in the tiny outpost of Araluen or walk along the Corn Trail, a track that’s been used to travel between the coast and the tablelands for thousands of years. Check out the fun regional events calendar for more shows, festivals and markets, such as the weekly Southern Harvest Farmers Market in Bungendore.
Canberra wine region
Just an hour from Queanbeyan is the renowned Canberra wine region. In Murrumbateman, the unofficial capital of the region, you’ll find famous cellar doors like Clonakilla, Shaw Wines and Helm Wines. It’s also a great place to eat with top restaurants Grazing in Gundaroo and Poachers Pantry near Yass.
Book lunch at Lark Hill Biodynamic Winery before driving northeast to Bywong where you will find more Canberra District vineyards such as Little Bridge, Summerhill Road Vineyard and Affleck Vineyard. Visit the village of Wamboin to find Contentious Character, a contemporary vineyard with cellar door and restaurant.
Getting there and where to stay
The Queanbeyan region is around three hours’ drive from Sydney and just 30min from Canberra. You can also catch a train or fly into Canberra and hire a car to explore the region. There are many places to stay across Queanbeyan, Braidwood and Bungendore including campgrounds, motels, pub rooms, historic cottages and luxury retreats.