Upper Hunter Country
Monday, 19 September 2016 00:00

Escape up! to natural wilderness

Upper Hunter Country is surrounded by magnificent national parks, nature reserves, wilderness areas and state forests and each features something unique.

The rainforests of Barrington Tops National Park are of international significance; forming part of the Gondwana rainforests of Australia's World Heritage Area.

Carved out of volcanic flows, the park rises from near sea level to over 1500m and protects on the largest temperate rainforests in mainland Australia, along with a host of diverse habitats and wide range of birds and animals.

Towarri is a diverse landscape of various vegetations types. Pockets of rainforest, stands of large grass trees and sections of snow gum coexist within the park.

There's also a wide range of birds, including the endangered speckled warbler.

Sandstone outcrops offer sweeping scenic views of the Upper Hunter and a lack of defined tracks in the park's mountainous terrain allow hikers the freedom to independently explore. After a vigorous walk you can always cool off in the Washpools water hole - a natural swimming spot.

Look out for the Caligula skink, which is only found here in the Liverpool Ranges and in the Barrington Tops.

 Camping opportunities don't come any more spectacular than the Goulburn River National Park.

The Park stretches along 90km of the river, and its wide, sandy banks and forest landscape offer easy walking and good swimming - particularly in summer - as well as some amazing bird watching.

When you're not bird watching, keep an eye out for eastern grey kangaroos, red-necked wallabies and wombats, which are also common in this area.

Wollemi National Park is NSW's largest wilderness area covering 492,220ha. A spectacular maze of deep canyons, rocky cliffs and undisturbed forest.

Wildlife abounds in this national park with a rich variety of diverse species including eastern grey kangaroos, brush tailed wallabies, wombats, echidnas, gliders, geckos, wedge-tailed eagles and a variety of snakes including the rare broad-headed snake. 

Other highlights include Burning Mountain in Wingen, Giant's Leap in Sandy Hollow and the Drip Gorge near Merriwa.

Published in Attractions
Monday, 19 September 2016 00:00

Come on up this October Long Weekend!

Only a short 90 minute drive from Newcastle CBD, the Upper Hunter Valley offers visitors a true country experience this October Long Weekend.

Most of the Upper Hunter’s generous 8000 square kilometres is devoted to national parks and nature reserves and rural uses like grazing, cropping, dairy farming, and horse studs.

Before you even leave the highway you will see cows, sheep and goats grazing and horses galloping in the fields.

Experience some of the most diverse environments in Australia from western grasslands to Alpine forests, subtropical zones and a wide variety of national parks and wilderness where you can truly ‘get lost’.

If you are after a weekend break to escape the hustle and bustle of city life but don’t want to venture too far then the Upper Hunter is the ideal location.

The Upper Hunter boasts one of the best fishing spots in NSW at Lake Glenbawn. There’s also space for water sports from swimming to water skiing, some great picnic spots and a range of accommodation options in Lake Glenbawn State Park.

Up in the Barrington Tops you can really escape with no mobile reception – guaranteeing you can switch off from the office for the weekend!

If wilderness isn’t your thing then you can go on a horse stud tour, enjoy a long lunch or a cheese platter for two at one of our wineries or visit some of our many art galleries the region has to offer.

While you're here why not check out one or more of the many events taking place over the long weekend such as;

  • Murrurundi Photography Art Prize 2016
  • Oktoberfest Scone at Airlie House Motor Inn
  • Merriwa Campdraft
  • Denman Farmers and Artisans Market
  • The Anglo American Glenbawn Fishing Classic
  • The Coolmore Denman Cup at Muswellbrook Race Club

Check out our events page for more details.

Whether you are travelling to somewhere else or looking for a short break, the region offers an enticing variety of activities for this October Long Weekend.

Unlock the secrets of the Upper Hunter through our website and sign up for our fortnightly newsletter ‘What’s up!” that lists all the events, sports and cultural activities held throughout the year.

Published in Attractions

Visit Devil Ark for a Devils in the wild tour!

The tour is fully escorted and runs for 2.5 hours and starts off with a tour of the Devil Centre and the informational displays. The tour will then take on same devil enrichment; a special form of feeding which encourages wild behaviour, interaction with joeys born at Devil Ark earlier on in the year and a rare chance to become immersed in the devil's natural habitat by entering huge free range enclosures to witness wild devils in truly wild conditions.

Devil Ark is a 2 hour drive from Scone, 4 hours from Newcastle and 6 hours from Sydney. There is plenty of accommodation options in Scone and surrounding towns for you to spend a night or two.

Tour costs are $150 for adults and $100 for children (8-15 years). Tours are capped at 12 people.

Tour Dates:

Saturday 1 August 2015 10am

Saturday 5 September 2015 10am

Saturday 3 October 2015 10am

Saturday 7 November 2015 10am

Saturday 5 December 2015 10am

Saturday 2 January 2016 10am

Saturday 5 March 2016 10am

Saturday 2 April 2016 10am

Saturday 7 May 2016 10am

Saturday 11 June 2016 10am


Visit the Devil Ark wwebsite for more details and booking:

Published in Attractions
Tuesday, 11 November 2014 00:00

Devil Ark Tours

Tours of Devil Ark are now available and run from September - May each year.  Devil Ark is two hours drive from Scone, four hours from Newcastle and six hours from Sydney.

The tour is fully escorted and runs for 2.5 hours and start with a tour of the Centre and the informational displays.  The tour will then take in some devil enrichment; a special form of feeding which encourages wild behaviour, interaction with joeys born at Devil Ark earlier this year and a rare chance to become immersed in the devil’s natural habitat by entering huge free range enclosures to witness wild devils in truly wild conditions. The tour ends back at the Devil Ark Centre where there’s the opportunity for Q&A with a Tassie devil expert. 

Tour groups are met in Moonan Flat at 9am on the day of the tour.  Follow the Devil Ark Supervisor up in your own car for a 10am tour start.  After the tour (12.30pm) the Devil Ark Supervisor will escort the group back to Moonan Flat.  Stop for a delicious lunch at the Victoria Hotel. 

There are loads of accommodation options in Scone, Muswellbrook, Aberdeen and Moonan Flat. 

Tour costs are $150 for adults and $100 for children (8-15).  Tours are capped at 12 people.  Please note that the road is dirt from Moonan Flat to Devil Ark and quite steep in places.  Once you have booked, you will receive an information kit with driving directions and advice on what to bring. 

Click here for dates and to book.

For more information on Devil Ark visit:


Published in Attractions