Wollondilly is fast becoming a regional tourism hotspot with emerging craft breweries, artisan markets, a light festival, skydiving, historical landmarks, the NSW Rail Museum, and farm stays all on offer, to name a few.
Picton is the largest town in the Wollondilly Shire and home to some great shops, restaurants and pubs. While you are in town enjoy a gourmet delight at Pheasants Nest Produce or a cold beer at “The George”. An ideal place to stay is the Picton Valley Motel that is situated across the road from Antill Park Golf Course if you’re partial to a hit. Within the motel is the fantastic seafood restaurant, The Captain’s Quarters, which is a hidden gem even to some in the area!
Country Valley Milk is a boutique dairy farm established by the Fairley Family and set in the rugged hills of the Razorback Range in Picton, NSW, that brings farm fresh milk to the local community. This family run farm has been operating since 1855 and now supplies the finest quality milk all over Sydney. Country Valley produce a range of organic milks, as well as the award winning conventional full cream, lite and skim milks, and yoghurts.
Cedar Creek Orchard is also just up the road in Thirlmere. The orchard has pick your own days, market days, and also houses the very hip and cool, Cedar Creek Cider, which is becoming popular all over Sydney. The NSW Rail Museum is also located in Thirlmere and is home to the Festival of Steam. You can wander through old carriages every day and take a ride on a steam train on weekends. Why not combine a visit with the Picton Markets, conveniently located at the Wollondilly Shire Hall along Menangle Street.
Not too far away is Mowbray Park, which is home to the Paperbark Cottages, within the popular Mowbray Park Farm. These ‘tiny’ homes offer an alternative stay on a real working farm. The kids will be occupied with tractor rides, sheep, cows, and chooks…and all the farm life that goes with them.
If 5 star luxury is more your thing, Kalinya Estate in Bargo offers stunning boutique accommodation and can also cater to larger private groups in The Homestead, The Lodge, or The Barn.
Appin is now one of the more densely populated towns which borders the Dharawal National Park. It lies between Campbelltown and Wollongong and formed part of the original ‘Cowpastures’. This was a popular area for the locals and European settlers alike, which ultimately led to the dark day that is known as the Appin Massacre that occurred in 1814. The town is home to several historic sites including Cataract Dam and Windmill Hill. It also has a great pub and some fantastic shops including South West Barbeque, which offers delicious slow cooked meats for sale.
Be spoilt for choice with ghost tours, horse riding, paintball and go-karting, as well as skydiving available at nearby Wilton. For the wine enthusiasts be sure to visit Razorback Ridge Wines, after venturing to Menangle to visit the general store or to pick up some handmade cheese, olives, honey, or salami.
Just across the Nepean River you can also experience the thrill of world class harness racing at Club Menangle.
Cross to the opposite side of the vast shire and you will find Warragamba Dam. Breath taking views of the dam can also be seen from Burragorang Lookout at The Oaks. In The Oaks you’ll find another fabulous pub as well a great little bakery to stop in for a bite before proceeding to Warragamba itself to experience the dam – Australia’s largest urban water supply dam – that supplies 5 million Sydneysiders with water. Enjoy the recreational space around the dam whilst having a picnic and marvelling at this engineering masterpiece.
There are a range of accommodation options available across the Macarthur and Wollondilly areas to suit all tastes and budgets.