Art is flourishing in the Upper Hunter!
Muswellbrook Regional Arts Centre with the attached Artiste Cafe is a large public gallery open Tuesday to Sunday. Haydon Hall in Murrurundi is open Thursday to Sunday and is renowned for its delicious food. Michael Reid Murrurundi is a gallery and coffee shop exhibiting stunning works from local, national and international artist and is open Friday to Sunday. Brook Gallery in Brook St, Muswellbrook, exhibits local artists from the Upper Hunter and is open Friday to Sunday. Local artist Amanda Paradise has a gallery on Liverpool St in Scone which exhibits her art, jewellery and interior decor and is open Thursday to Sunday. Open all week, David Mahony Art Gallery and Sculpture Park in Sandy Hollow is a great place to stretch your legs and enjoy a light meal. If you are in Scone, keep your eye out for exhibitions at the beautifully restored church which is home to the Scone Arts and Craft Centre.
Step back in time
Museums, old wold charm and 19th century heritage sites tell the story of early life in the Upper Hunter. Spend the night in a 19th Century homestead such as Belltrees, Kerrabee and Segenhoe Inn. Pay respect to the 12th Light Horse Regiment in Murrurundi. View old relics of yesteryear in the historical museums of Merriwa, Muswellbrook and Scone. Pick up a Historical Walks map from the local Visitor Information Centre. Following these ton walks will reveal many of the historical buildings dating from 1850s onwards that were built as the towns grew and prospered.
While Upper Hunter lends itself to self drive tours, why not sit back and let the experts show you around. Upper Hunter Tours offer exclusive access to some of the world's famous thoroughbred horse studs, as well as local wineries and scenic tours of the surrounding areas. If it's a birds eye view you're seeking, Pays Air Charter offer group charters and joy flights by both helicopter and small planes out of Scone Airport. Bu sure to visit the Warbirds Museum while you are there. Airspeed Aviation also offer scenic tours of the area including the Upper Hunter Explorer, Mountain Rambler, Lunch on the Beach and The Works!
Pays are an Upper Hunter family owned business with over 50 years in aviation. Based at Scone Airport, Pays can provide all your aviation needs.
The Pays flying Warbirds museum is a must see for aviation enthusiast and while you are there, look over Pays fleet of fire fighting aircraft and helicopters that service the NSW Rural Fire Service. Pays are very passionate about their warbirds as shown by the beautiful collection. The restoration and maintenance of the timeless machines can only be undertaken by a very dedicated team of engineers and supporting staff. Take a look at Pay's collection of Warbirds here. Pay’s Warbirds are kept at the Scone NSW base of Pay’s Air Service. The museum is open to visits on a donation basis with prior arrangement, and large group tours can also be accommodated.
Experience the thrill of actually flying in a warbird and enjoy an exhilarating flight over the beautiful Upper Hunter including Lake Glenbawn and the horse studs of Segenhoe Valley.
Take off from Scone airport and take in the sights of the picturesque upper Hunter. With the 30 minute option you can take in the sights of the Wingen maid, Liverpool Range and Lake Glenbawn or alternatively head south to see the coal industry from the air then return overflying the local communities and horse studs in the Segenhoe Valley - Valued at $250+GST. Alternatively why not take in all the sights with a 1hr scenic for the great value of $400+GST. All flights can take up to 3 passengers for the price above.
Bird Dog - The Cessna Bird Dog stepped in to take the place of the Cessna 170. Jumping from 145 Hp to 213Hp, by 1962 there had been 3431 Birddogs manufactured. The US army purchased many Bird Dogs for the Vietnam War for use as observers and forward air control, which required them to carry target marking rockets. This is ideal for someone who would like a taste of flying in a war bird. Since its primary use was observing, the large windows give the passenger great views of the local area. For a 1 hr flight $390 incl GST
The Tiger Moth (DH-82) was manufactured by De Havilland and first flew in 1931. It was primarily a trainer aircraft which had two seats. The first model had a 120hp Gipsy III inverted inline engine, this was soon upgraded to the Gipsy Major engine with 130hp. Enjoy the breeze in the open cockpit of the tiger as you take in the sights of the Upper Hunter. For a ½ hr flight $300 incl GST or for a 1 hr flight $550 incl GST.
Aerobatics are available to complete the Tiger Moth experience. The North American Harvard was designed in the late 1930's following demand for an aircraft purpose built to train military pilots all over the world. There was an increasing demand for military combat pilots and by the 1940's the total training hours required had been cut to only 200 hours total, of that time 75 hours were in the T-6. The T-6G (1946) model was better than the previous designs because there was an increased fuel capacity, a more user friendly cockpit layout and, a tail wheel that was steerable by the pilot. The T-6 was being used as a basic pilot trainer right up into the 70's and there are many that are airworthy today but only used in civil aviation. This is ideal for someone who would like to enjoy the speed and the sound of a roaring radial engine in a genuine World War 2 military trainer. If you are feeling adventurous there is an option of doing aerobatics. For a ½ hr flight $600 incl GST.
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.
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: http://www.devilark.com.au/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.
For more information on Devil Ark visit: http://www.devilark.com.au
The historic Widden Stud in the south west corner of Muswellbrook Shire provided an outstanding insight into the Thoroughbred Breeding Industry which is a major part of the economy in Upper Hunter Country.
Widden Stud put out the welcome mat to well over 200 members of the public on Saturday 23rd August when they presented 11 magnificent stallions at their annual Open Day. The parade included such great performers as Serbring, Zoustar, Stratum, Shamus Award and Star Witness.
The stud covers over 8,000 acres along the narrow valley floor of Widden Brook surrounded by the ancient sandstone cliffs of the Wollemi National Park. As well as the world famous thoroughbred enterprise, Widden also operates a high quality commercial beef herd including Hereford and Santa Gertrudes cross cattle. The valley is home to other famous horse studs including the neighbouring
Baramul Stud operated by well-known Australian business entrepreneur, Gerry Harvey.
The property has been the home of the Thompson family since the 1830s with the first racehorses bred at the stud in 1867. Since then, racehorses from Widden have taken on the best on the track in Australia and around the world. The stud has an outstanding record of winners over many generations.
For racing and racehorse enthusiasts, the list horses from Widden reads like the “Who’s Who” of the thoroughbred world. A row of “headstones” chronicle the Stud’s fabulous history and outstanding breeding record with names such as Vain, Bletchingly, Todman and Marscay etched in sandstone tablets from the surrounding cliffs dating back beyond the Dreamtime.