The township of Wiseman's Ferry is a pretty little river settlement, surrounded by National Parks, and situated about 60km north-west of Sydney’s CBD. It doesn't seem to have grown much in all the times I have been here, this adds to the charm. The ferry still crosses the river.
The Wiseman's Inn Hotel was built in 1826, and is very popular on weekends, as is the whole area with Sydneysiders!
Building the Great North Road to Wisemans Ferry in 1828, was a very difficult job.
520 convicts were employed to carve the road out of solid bedrock, extremely hard work! In some places the steep stone retaining walls were up to 12 metres high and supported by massive buttresses. You can cross the river by ferry, and drive or walk some of this road.
The Great North Road and has been classified by the National Trust.
From Parramatta, follow highway 6, then Highways36 to Wiseman's Ferry, a total of 56kms, about 1hours driving.
There is a little bit of history about the Burragorang Valley. In 1802, a zig zag track up the mountain was built for horses and bullocks but was later made a wagon road. Even back then, the valley was a popular tourist spot, and many guesthouses were built here. The huge Warragamba Dam was built and the valley was flooded with all the residents moved into the neighbouring towns.
The lookout views are spectacular, a scenic spot to visit. Picnic tables, chairs, wood bbq and Toilets are all here, what a nice place to spend some time!
The rock lookout was well worth the journey, even if there was a little gravel road to travel on. Just a short walk, and we were at the huge rock from where we had wonderful views over the Nepean River
The longer track of 2.5km (40 mins return walk), which leads from the car park through Gum trees to Riley’s Mountain Lookout gave us more views of the Nepean Gorge and it’s beautiful surrounds.
In Spring time, when the Wattle's are in bloom, you should see quite a variety of Honeyeaters feeding on the nectar.
The Lookout is situated within the historic Mulgoa Valley, only minutes from the city of
This is a nice tour to do if you have a car. Its very scenic and historical.
Warragamba Dam is on the route, it supplies Sydney with water. We called in at Nattai Lookout and Burragorang Lookout, overlooking the Nattai Valley and Lake Burragorang which feeds into Warragamba Dam.
Take a break at Picton or Camden and pick up a walking tour brochure of these historic towns. At Camden, situated on the Golf Course, is Studley park House. Its a stately historic home that was built in 1889. It is in need of renovation, and can only be viewed from the outside. Located at the Camden Golf club, 50 Lodges road, Narellan.
Windsor is a historic town from the early convict days.
Located about an hours drive from Sydney, every Sunday they hold a street market at Thompson square. Australia's OLDEST HOTEL, the 'Macquarie Arms' is located here.
It dates from 1815, and is meant to have a tunnel to the Hawkesbury river built for the purpose of rum smuggling in the olden days.
Ghost Tours, River cruises and a beautiful way to dine is in the Clydesdale Horse drawn Carriage for an evening meal.
This church is the 'OLDEST ANGLICAN CHURCH IN AUSTRALIA'
The Cemetery is actually older than the Church. There are lots of interesting old graves here.
'John Tebbutt's tomb' is interesting. He was an Astrologer, and had the Tomb built in 1910, 6 years before his death.
He was commemorated on the Australian $100 note.
The website listed has interesting details on this Church and Cemetery.
This is an excellent scenic drive that follows the Hawkesbury river, giving you lovely views.
A surprise, were the sandstone cliffs that you virtually drive under. There are heaps and heaps of Caravan Parks along this stretch of the river.
At Lower Portland, take the ferry across the River and head to Sackville and Ebenezer, where you will find the AUSTRALIA's OLDEST CHURCH, which was built in 1809.
It also has the 'OLDEST SURVIVING SCHOOL BUILDING'
You will pass by the Tizzana Winery * B&B on this route. Built in 1887, it is a National Trust classified sandstone building.
Mulgoa is 66kms from Sydney, much closer from Parramatta.
St Thomas' Anglican Church, built in 1838, was the first public building in the Mulgoa Valley and was constructed out of sandstone and cedar on paddocks donated to the Church. Inside is a very old colonial Organ, with 4 ranks of pipes, no pedals, hand pumped Bellows that are still in working order, but not used, as an electric pump was installed.
The Bell in the Tower, was brought out from England, costing 150 pounds and weighing half a ton. Attached to the church was Mulgoa's first school. It operated until 1871-72, when the Mulgoa Provisional School replaced it.
The cemetery is very interesting one to have a browse around because of its age.
Picton, originally known as Stonequarry, was proclaimed as Picton Village on October 10, 1845.
With many historic buildings in the town its a good idea to pick up the FREE "Picton History Walk" which is available from the information centre located in the Old Picton post office.
I thought St. Marks church with its Pioneer cemetery was very interesting. Located here, are the graves of Picton's ancestors.
A park with Toilets is located beside the River. Have a look at the historical flood marker near the Bridge, you will be amazed at how high the water rose!
The Information centre is open daily from 9 - 5pm
Argyle & Menangle St, Picton
Located on the Picton, Camden scenic tour. About 15ks from Penrith on the Mulgoa road (73) turn into Fairlight road. Here, you will come across this beautiful little chapel, a copy of a centuries old German Chapel. I would imagine it would be stunning in Autumn, it was beautiful as it was. The schoenstatt Sisters of Mary run the Chapel and Retreat, and there are others located all over the world.
This is "off the beaten track" because its not your normal tourist affraction.
Lancer Barracks is evidence of Parramatta’s military heritage. The Lancer Barracks is the oldest continuously used military establishment on Australian soil.
The Barracks contain some of the best preserved colonial (early 1800's) buildings in Australia.
The Lancers train at Lancer Barracks where the museum building, Linden House also stands. The buildings form the oldest continuously used military barracks on the mainland of Australia.
They were erected on the orders of Governor Macquarie to replace earlier barracks in Parramatta town.
Commenced in 1818, they were completed in 1820, the architect was Lieutenant John Watts of the 46th Regiment. They were to stand in an area of 3.25ha, and were designed for a company (approximately 100 officers and men).
They served as a barracks for British regiments stationed here in convict days. Some of the men would have served under Wellington in the Napoleonic wars.
The barracks are open daily but the museum only on some Sundays.
2 Smith Street, Parramatta
Just five minutes by car from Parramatta's centre is the tranquil Lake Parramata. Originally built in the 1850's, the dam supplied Parramatta's drinking water into the 1900's. It then became a popular swimming spot, boasting Australia's largest inland freshwater lifesaving club.
The water is now not quite clean enough to swim - although much has been done recently to restore it to its former pristine beauty.