10 minute read.
Greetings from the Bathurst region,
We’re feeling the Christmas spirit so we’ve put together 12 ways to spend your days this festive season in the Bathurst region.
Lockdowns have lifted and there is plenty to explore here right in your own backyard. Historic homes, underground wonders, outdoor adventures, history, food, art and culture abound.
Our events calendar is packed with fun ways to catch up with family and friends and share in some Christmas cheer while supporting local businesses that have been doing it tough in the last year.
So pack your bags, book some genuine, home-away-from-home-style accommodation and get out into the bush for holiday memories that will last a lifetime.
1. Brett Whiteley: Drawing is Everything
An Art Gallery of NSW Touring Exhibition. Drawing underpinned everything renowned Australian contemporary artist, Brett Whiteley did. Explore rarely seen early works from the artist in this incredible exhibition in the intimate Bathurst Regional Art Gallery.
2. Miss Traill’s House & Garden tours
This amazing Victorian-era bungalow was first owned by the Reverend Thomas Sharpe, and last lived in by Miss Ida Traill who left the home and contents to the National Trust in 1976. You can now step back in time to tour the house and garden each Sunday from 12 pm.
3. Jenolan Caves
Stay cool, it’s always 15°C underground at Jenolan Caves. Explore the world’s oldest caves with guided tours through this incredible natural wonder.
Extend your stay in comfy accommodation at the heritage Caves House, or book a dinner or high tea at Chisholm’s Restaurant.
A couple of things to keep in mind before your trip, bookings for cave tours, Chisholm’s Restaurant and Caves house are essential, and the way to Jenolan has changed with the Hampton access route closed.
4. Bathurst Farmer’s Market
Pick up delicious local and regional produce at the Bathurst Farmers’ Market to adorn your festival table, held on the fourth Saturday of each month (except for December, it’s on the 18th) in the historic pavilions and grounds at Bathurst Showground.
Golden brown baked treats, locally roasted coffee, local fruit and veggies, craft beer, local wine, farm-fresh meat and eggs, pickles, preserves and oils, wildflowers and more. We are salivating!
Four-legged freinds are also welcome, on lead.
5. Visit a winery, or three
One of Bathurst’s best-kept secrets is our tucked-away, small-batch, family-owned wineries. Book in for a wine tasting at the cellar door on weekends and you’ll meet the makers and learn why the winemaking process in the Bathurst region is so unique. It’s a truly personalised experience.
Or keep your eye out for the Bathurst Wine Explorer tours, returning in January 2022. Each month, Bathurst Tours takes guests to 2 Bathurst Wineries, with lunch at historic Abercrombie House, all you have to do is hop on the bus and enjoy the scenery (and the wine), no driving required.
6. Abercrombie House
Speaking of Abercrombie House, you don’t need to book onto a Bathurst Wine Explorer tour to go inside this spectacular grand mansion. Built in the 1870s, and meticulously restored over generations by the Morgan family, Abercrombie House is open for self-guided tours, special events, high teas and more.
7. Visit a Museum
Each of the museums of Bathurst have a fascinating story to tell of the region’s past. Uncover underground wonders at the Australian Fossil and Mineral Museum, rev up your imagination at the National Motor Racing Museum, or go loco at the Bathurst Rail Museum.
8. Take an off-road adventure
Detour Aventures will take you off the beaten track in the Bathurst region, with personalised tours of the gold country surrounding Hill End, state forests, Wiradjuri Ngurambang Cultural tours and winery tours.
9. Visit a village
Each of the villages surrounding Bathurst have a unique story to tell about the diverse history of the region. Strike out from a base in Bathurst to discover restored gold mining relics, Georgian and Victorian architecture, Wiradjuri history, and stunning natural wonders.
It’s the characters that make these villages so memorable as well. Stop in to a cafe or hotel during your visit for a yarn with the locals.
10. Book a table
Bathurst is home to a legendary food scene. Several cafes will tantalise your tastebuds with delicious coffee and classic cafe dishes served with a modern twist.
Casual fine dining is on offer in quirky heritage spaces throghout the CBD.
And it’s hard to beat the pub grub, best served sitting in one of the atmospheric beer gardens listening to some live local tunes, washed down with a cold beverage.
11. Mayfield Garden
Visit amazing Mayfield during their Summer Festival to experience all 114 hectares of it’s glorious grounds, landscaped and manicured to perfection. You can take a row boat on Mayfield Lake, try and find your way out of the huge hedge maze, or just relax and unwind by the water garden.
Stay overnight in luxury glamping tents, or fuel up at the on-site, garden to plate cafe.
12. Bathurst Aqua Park
Tonnes of inflatable fun is on offer at Chifley Dam all summer long. Cool off on hot summer days, the dam is full to the brim of fresh water. You could say it’s Bathurst’s version of the beach, but better.