Hillston is on the banks of the meandering Lachlan River in the beautiful western Riverina. Enjoy the rural charm, tranquil parks and heritage buildings in the country town, which is also a great base for exploring the Willandra National Park, home to kangaroos and emus.
Things to do
The charming town is on the Kidman Way, a scenic route in the heart of NSW between Jerilderie in the south and the Queensland border in the north through Bourke. On your way to Hillston from the south, stop at Merriwagga for the Memorial to Pioneer Women and the Black Stump Hotel, which is billed as having Australia’s tallest bar. Here you can learn about the Black Stump legend and the gruesome tale of Mrs Barbara Blain.
Lake Woorabinda, a man-made lake, is an aquatic playground with water skiing in the summer and is home to an abundance of seasonal birdlife including pelicans, swans and cockatoos. Strolling around the lake is a good way to stretch your legs before heading off on your next adventure.
Next to Lake Woorabinda is the John Fensom Park which has play equipment, a BBQ, a skate park and outdoor fitness equipment. The Hillston pool is nearby for a refreshing dip in summer. You’ll also find an 18-hole sandgreen golf course located just over the river on the Mossgiel Road, a challenge for all golfers.
You can enjoy picnics in parks and amble along the main street for heritage buildings, cafes, shops, and two country pubs. The Red Dust and Paddy Melons Community Gallery is the local Visitor Information Centre and home to local art, craft and produce.
Many food crops are produced around Hillston, including oranges, cherries, potatoes, almonds, walnuts as well as the traditional grain crops, the diversity of agriculture has been made possible by water from the Lachlan River and the underground aquifer.
Getting there and where to stay
You’ll find convenient accommodation options in the town, including a caravan park, motels, pubs and a B&B. Hillston is a 7 ½ hour road trip from Sydney and 6 ½ hour road trip from Melbourne. Or you can fly from Sydney to Griffith City Airport and rent a car for the 75 minutes’ drive to Hillston.