The Pilliga Forest Discovery Centre is the best place for visitors and tourists to collect information about the Pilliga Forest before setting off on their adventure.
Itinerary: Pilliga Forest and the Warrumbungles
Take a couple of days – or longer – to immerse yourself in the timeless Aboriginal stories and ancient landscapes of Pilliga Forest and Warrumbungle National Park. Taking a tour with an Aboriginal Discovery ranger is the perfect way to connect with this iconic landscape.
Read more about Itinerary: Pilliga Forest and the Warrumbungles
Dreaming stories offer a deeper understanding of this rugged north-west corner of NSW, its ancient rock engravings and startling geological features. In Aboriginal legend, the Dandry Gorge was gouged out of the ground by the rainbow serpent of the Gamilaroi Dreaming, and visiting Warrumbungle National Park, you’ll see why the Gamilaroi people gave these crooked mountains their name.
- Coonabarabran, located 452 km north-west of Sydney, is the gateway to the Warrumbungle National Park and Pilliga Forests. There is good road access to the national parks, but you’ll need to check road conditions before entering.
- It is approximately a 7 hour drive from Sydney, 6 hours from Newcastle and 5 hours from Port Macquarie.
- Trains link towns in the region. Please visit NSW TrainLink for timetables, fares and online bookings.
- There are three airports in the surrounding region that have regular flights from major cities:
- Dubbo is located to the south of the region and has regular flights from Sydney
- Tamworth, within a 2 hour drive east of the region, has regular flights from Sydney, Brisbane and Canberra.
- Narrabri, approximately a 1 hour drive north of the region, has regular flights from Sydney, Brisbane and Newcastle.
Day 1: Connect with centuries of culture
Start your exploration of the area’s Aboriginal cultural heritage at the Pilliga Forest Discovery Centre in Baradine. Here, you can book a guided Discovery tour to hear ancient stories of the Sandstone Caves. Or if you’d prefer to do it at your own pace, take the self-guided Sandstone Caves walking track past the cave’s ancient rock engravings.
In the afternoon, stroll along the Sculptures in the Scrub walking track at Dandry Gorge, where you’ll discover more about the traditional land of the local Gamilaroi people. Be sure to pack a tent and sleeping bag so you can spend the night, under a blanket of stars, in the remote Sculptures in the Scrub campground.
Take a self-guided tour along the Sandstone Caves walking track to see ancient Aboriginal rock art. For more of an insight into Aboriginal history, book a guided tour.
Take a short walk around the Sculptures in the Scrub in Timmallallie National Park – award-winning sculptures that celebrate Aboriginal culture and history.
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.
Free park entry
- Things to do
- Country NSW
Camp for free at Sculptures in the Scrub picnic area and campground in Timmallallie National Park. Enjoy the Pilliga Forest and take the short walk to the sculptures and enjoy a barbecue lunch or dinner.
Day 2: Trek through an age old landscape
Explore the ancient, volcanic landscape of Warrumbungle National Park with an Aboriginal Discovery Ranger, visiting the sites of Aboriginal camps and learning about the three Aboriginal language groups which bordered the area. Stretch your legs on all or part of the steep Breadknife and Grand High Tops hike where you’ll see awe-inspiring views of this iconic national park. When the sun sets, unpack your tent in Camp Blackman or the heritage Balor Hut campground.
Warrumbungle National Park near Coonabarabran in NSW is Australia’s only Dark Sky Park, making it the perfect spot for stargazing, amateur astronomy and camping under the starriest of skies.
Park entry fees apply.
- Things to do
- Places to stay
- Country NSW
Breadknife and Grand High Tops walk in Warrumbungle National Park, regarded as one of the best walks in NSW, offers close up views of the park’s iconic rock formations.
Camp Blackman is a popular base from which to explore Warrumbungle National Park. It's equipped with barbecues, picnic tables, hot showers and resident kangaroos.
Balor Hut campground in Warrumbungle National Park offers secluded heritage accommodation in an historic walkers’ hut or tent camping and is close to walks and lookouts.
- 2 days