The days of the gold rush have long since passed but there are plenty of opportunities to get out and find your own gold.

Bathurst has a long history of gold mining. In fact, the first gold ever discovered in Australia was found in Bathurst in 1823, by James McBrien who noted its presence when surveying the Fish River. But with the local authorities worried that the discovery of gold would harm the burgeoning settlement which was in a prime position for agriculture, the discovery of gold was kept quiet for over 20 years until a significant grain of gold was found by Edward Hargraves in 1851. 

Soon after, the proclamation was made that gold had been found in Bathurst, and thousands of hopeful miners were digging around Bathurst and the surrounding region, bringing in new free settlers from all over Australia and even internationally. 

Today the allure of gold still draws visitors to Bathurst and the surrounding area with plenty of people still making regular finds. You can go out and try your luck in the Bathurst region with two public fossicking areas close to the Bathurst and five local businesses that offer gold panning tours and services to suit any group. 

All fossicking must abide by NSW Fossicking guidelines, see below to download a copy of A Guide to Fossicking in NSW

Never Been Panning Before? Take a Tour!
Get Out and Fossick Today!

Hill End Fossicking

1 hour and 20 minutes from Bathurst, Tambaroora, just north of Hill End is the historic centre of the gold rush, and is still thriving with opportunities to get out and fossick.

Ophir Reserve

1 hour from the Bathurst in neighbouring Orange.
Ophir reserve is another great place to get out camping, gold fossicking and exploring.

Sapphire Bend

50 minutes from the Bathurst in Oberon. Sapphire Bend is a spot where you can go fossicking for sapphires, and zircons. The method is a little different so read more below on how to hunt for them.
Fossicking Guides and Resources   

Bathurst Visitor Fossicking Guide

Fossicking in NSW
Rules and Regulations

Topographic Maps For Further Research

If you are having some trouble finding a map for an area or are looking for detailed topographic information for you'r next adventure. NSW Spatial Services run a great website where you can access dozens of Topographic area maps for free, read more below for detailed instructions about how to access this great resource.

History Hill Museum

A huge display of gold-rush era artefacts that tell the history of Hill End. Explore the underground mine and learn all about the gold rush and the impact it had on not only the Bathurst region but early colonial Australia as a whole.