Local Coonabarabran Attractions
Coonabarabran ('Coona' to locals) is widely recognised as an ideal place for stargazing thanks to its pristine air, high altitude (505m) and low humidity, and several observatories have been established in the area.
Sitting on land owned traditionally by the Gamilaroi people, it's an old-fashioned, welcoming sort of a country town, where the locals are likely to strike up a conversation with travellers over icy beer in the main street pub, or a coffee in one of the local cafes.
Coonabarabran Stargazing is a brand new way to experience the Milky Way Galaxy in Coonabarabran. Explore the stories and past of the Milky Way through the stories of the ancients; see objects impossible to see with the naked eye and marvel at the immensity of the universe above.
Whether you are here for the past, the present or the future of the night skies above, Coonabarabran Stargazing has something for everyone to enjoy.
Warrumbungle National Park
Discover nature's classroom on Discovery Ranger-guided walks, talks, and tours in the Warrumbungle National Park. Discovery Programs operate during autumn and spring school holidays.
Bookings are essential for activities so contact the Warrumbungle National Park Visitors Centre for further details on the contact number supplied or you can self-book tours on the national parks website.
Siding Spring Observatory
Have you visited Australia's Biggest Telescope? You can now!
Siding Spring Observatory is home to Australian optical astronomy, with over 20 telescopes on the site, currently participating in research of our universe.
Go inside the Anglo Australia Visitors Gallery and view the big telescope, learn a little about astronomy and take in the best views of the Warrumbungle national park.
Sandstone Caves Walking Track
Walk in the footsteps of the Gamilaroi people along the short Sandstone Caves walking track in Pilliga Nature Reserve. You’ll pass through scenic forest to the impressive sandstone hills, with some containing ancient Aboriginal rock engravings. Take some time to read over the interpretive signage for more of an insight into this special place.
You can take a self-guided walk, however this unique place is best experienced on a guided tour with an Aboriginal Discovery Ranger. You can book your tour at Pilliga Forest Discovery Centre in Baradine.
Worlds Largest Virtual Solar System
Launch into Coonabarabran, Central NSW, on the Worlds Largest Virtual Solar System Drive and explore the planets as if you were hurtling through space. Journey through the Solar System and picturesque countryside on one or all of the five drives that lead to Australia's largest optical astronomy centre (which you will find the sun), Siding Spring Observatory is one of the country's largest centres for optical astronomy research. Stop and visit each sign to learn fascinating facts about the universe along the way.
The colourful three-dimensional planets on the billboards are scaled in size relative to the huge observatory dome, and the location of the billboards are scaled in distance, just as you'd find the planets in outer space - only 38 million times smaller!
The Australian Museum Diprotodon Exhibition is housed at the Coonabarabran Visitor Information Centre, conveniently located on the Newell Highway at the southern end of town.
The exhibition displays the skeleton and skull of a Diprotodon, the largest marsupial ever to have lived. It is often likened to a giant-sized wombat. The remains of the Diprotodon were found in the creek bed of Cox's Creek near Tambar Springs in 1979. The exhibition also provides information on another megafauna that were believed to have existed at around the same time.
The Woodpecker Gun is a War Memorial to those who served in the Second World War. The Japanese Machine Gun, which is at the front of the Memorial Swimming Pool, adjacent to the Coonabarabran Visitor Information Centre, was captured on August 3, 1945, during combat in New Guinea and is a free attraction to visit. This is a 24 hour viewing place.
There is an information board at the gun site with details of the capture and a listing of the Coonabarabran men and women who served in World War Two and the Vietnam War.
Mount Exmouth Walking Track
This long trek is also an extremely rewarding one: the 360-degree views from Mount Exmouth, the 1206m peak of Warrumbungle Range, are truly outstanding. Along the way to the summit, you’ll encounter beautiful scenery, a varied vegetation community, and basalt rock formations that comprise some of the few remaining pieces of the original volcanic shield. Following Mount Exmouth walking track is to walk back in time, experiencing the best that Warrumbungle National Park has to offer.
You won’t be alone, either. Kangaroos, wallabies and wallaroos are common sights along the track. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a rare koala in the trees along ‘The Boulevarde’, a stretch of scenic woodland between Camp Burbie and Danu Gap.
Pronounced pilly-gah, Pilliga Forest is an iconic Australian landscape offering rugged beauty on a grand scale. Explore the trail network by car or on foot, take a guided tour and camp out.
One of the iconic landscapes of inland Australia, Pilliga Forest (or sometimes called the Pilliga Scrub) is made up of Pilliga Nature Reserve, Timmallallie National Park, Pilliga West, and East State Conservation Areas.
Artesian Bore Baths
The natural health-giving waters that flow into the Pilliga Artesian Bore Baths have been doing so for well over a century. This facility is found just East of the village of Pilliga along the Pilliga Road (approximately 56 kilometres from Wee Waa/sealed road).
The water temperature is about 37.1 degrees Celsius and many people come to bathe in them for therapeutic value.
Crystal Kingdom is the home of one of the world's most unique mineral collections, the "Minerals of the Warrumbungles".
See the world's rarest and most colourful Zeolite Crystals and learn about how the Coonabarabran area was once home to not one, but two volcanoes. Experienced staff are available to explain the fascinating origin of these extinct local volcanoes.
Sculptures In The Scrub
Sculptures in the Scrub walking track, in Timallallie National Park, takes in the award-winning Sculptures in the Scrub,.
Each sculpture is the result of an artist collaborating with local Aboriginal Elders and young people on a piece that tells a story of local Aboriginal history and culture. Take some time to look at these works - you’ll find some information about the artist’s background and the methods used to create the sculpture, along with its deeper meaning.
Getaway Tourist Park is just a hop, skip and a jump to local cafes for fine food and coffee, mouth watering baked goods at the local bakery, pizza takeaways, the bowling club, pub, restaurants, shops, boutiques, skatepark, tennis and squash courts.
There is always some great events happening in and around Coonabarabran... North West Equestrian Expo, Coona Cup, Science In The Pub, Coonabarabran Show and Rodeo, Dark Sky Awakens Festival, Easter Bunny Bazaar, Hartwood Music Festival, Agquip Agricultural Show, Coona Bowling Club Christmas Cup, Coonabarabran Christmas Spectacular.
Click on the link below to see what's happening at the time of your visit!