School excursion

Bush tucker in Bongil Bongil

Stage 4 (Years 7-8), Geography, Bongil Bongil National Park

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Share the bush secrets of the traditional Gumbaynggirr People in Bush tucker – a Stage 4 (Years 7-8) excursion in Bongil Bongil National Park. Aboriginal guides will reveal their special connection to Country and their secrets for health, wellness and survival.    

Read more about Bush tucker in Bongil Bongil

With help from your traditional guide, Bonville Creek will reveal its ‘supermarket’, ‘pharmacy’ and ‘hardware store', places that have been serving the wise Gumbaynggirr People for millenia. 

Students will be introduced to the seasonal connection the custodians have with this land. They’ll learn how their deep connection to Country has informed the cultural landscape management practices of the region. 

Students will use key inquiry questions to explore and discuss environmental change and management. They’ll consider these practices through the lens of sustainability, evolving their geographical fieldwork skills and knowledge beyond the classroom.  

This excursion supports the K-10 geography syllabus topic of Environmental Change and Management.

For program outline, safety and practical information about this excursion, see info for teachers

Stage Stage 4 (Years 7-8)
Learning area Geography
Student outcomes

4.5. Identifies the meaning, purpose and context of historical sources.

4.8. Describes the interrelationships between people and environments.


Students will:

  • Recognise that Aboriginal people are the first Australians
  • Investigate the connections that the Gumbaynggirr People have to the land, water, plants and animals of this place.
  • Hear stories to understand why this place is important to Gumbaynggirr People and how it can be cared for 
  • Discuss land management practices from the past and present 
  • Examine the concept of sustainability and how it is evidenced and supported in this precious local environment 
  • Engage with local Aboriginal culture through engaging learning activities
  • Have the opportunity to ask questions of a local Gumbaynggirr Person

Excursion details

Bongil Bongil National Park

$275 per group (includes GST). Maximum 30 students per group. Maximum 2 groups.

Meeting point
Bongil picnic area, 15 minutes south of Coffs Harbour via Williams Road.
If you would like to organise a NPWS school excursion please get in touch with local staff or use the 'Enquire' link for the online form.
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Park info

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Info for teachers

All the practical information you need to know about Bush tucker in Bongil Bongil.

Program outline

  • Welcome, acknowledgement of Country and safety briefing 
  • Explore the riverside area next to Bonville Creek with your Aboriginal guide
  • Examine the plants and animals that live and thrive here
  • Learn how some of these plants and animals were used for food, medicine and tools
  • Hear stories of how the Gumbaynggirr People valued and cared for their environment, seeing it as a source of life and nurture 
  • Learn about the Gumbaynggirr connection to the seasons and how these considerations informed cultural land management practices 
  • Discuss environmental change and management practice, and the concept of sustainability as it relates to this local environment 
  • Farewell and depart

Getting there and parking

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    What to bring

    Please wear long pants, closed, comfortable shoes and bring a hat and sunscreen. Be ready for all weather conditions with a jumper and raincoat. Remember to bring extra food and water, and any necessary medications. Please bring your belongings in a backpack rather than a plastic bag.

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    Pre activity briefing: participants will be briefed at the start of the activity/day.

    Safety equipment: NPWS staff carry radios and first aid kits, hold current first aid certificates and are aware of emergency procedures.

    Staff accreditation: NPWS staff have current Senior First Aid accreditation. They are experienced in working with groups of students in the natural environment and have excellent knowledge of the specific areas they are visiting including potential hazards. NPWS is committed to a Child Safe and Friendly Environment. Our staff have been screened for child-related employment and have completed a Working with Children Check.

    Emergencies: NPWS staff are trained to deal with emergencies and emergency procedures are in place. Ongoing supervision of a student following first aid treatment will be the responsibility of the visiting school.

    Risk assessment and risk benefits

    Our rangers and guides have the technical skill and experience to assess the risks and the benefits of a variety of activities delivered as part of our learning programs.

    We believe in including opportunities that allow students to learn and experience for themselves through exploration in the natural environment.

    Please make your own risk assessment based on the information provided. Detailed potential risks and controls are provided for the site to assist teachers in risk management planning. Teachers and carers should be aware of, and consider the needs, abilities and medical conditions of students when visiting this site. The supervision of students remains the responsibility of the teacher. The school must ensure an adequate number of adult supervisors are present.


    Disability access level - medium

    Bongil picnic area has medium accessibility grading and some assistance may be required to access the area.