Cecil Hoskins picnic area

Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve

Overview

Cecil Hoskins picnic area, near Moss Vale, is located beside Wingecarribee River in Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve. It’s an ideal spot for birdwatching, picnicking and having a barbecue.

Type
Picnic areas
Where
Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve
Accessibility
Medium
Price
Free
Please note
Remember to take your binoculars if you want to go bird watching.

Great things come in small packages and this little picnic area beside Wingecarribee River is no exception to that rule.

Bring along the family and your picnic supplies and set up for a few relaxing hours in this tranquil wetland setting. You could even bring your own gas stove and enjoy a barbecue. After a hot day, it’s a great place for picnicking in the evening.

Feel free to wander the area, taking binoculars with you for some birdwatching as you try to spot the many species of woodland birds and waterbirds. See if you can also find the two rare old Paddys River box trees. They’ve been around much longer than us.

If you want to explore a bit further, Wingecarribee River walking track begins and ends at the picnic area. This walking track loops you through regenerating forest on Wingecarribee floodplain.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Current alerts in this area

There are no current alerts in this area.

Local alerts

For the latest updates on fires, closures and other alerts in this area, see https://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/things-to-do/picnic-areas/cecil-hoskins-picnic-area/local-alerts

General enquiries

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about the Cecil Hoskins picnic area.

Getting there and parking

On entering Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve:

  • The picnic area will be adjacent to the carpark

Road quality

  • Unsealed roads

Vehicle access

  • 2WD vehicles (no long vehicle access)

Weather restrictions

  • All weather

Parking

Parking is available nearby Cecil Hoskins picnic area.

Best times to visit

There are lots of great things waiting for you in Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve. Here are some of the highlights.

Autumn

When the weather is milder, hike from the reserve to Bong Bong.

Spring

Bring your binoculars for a spot of birdwatching and look for migratory bird species that stop over to feed and rest in the reserve.

Summer

Enjoy a summer evening picnic and listen to birdcalls. By the time the sun goes down, they'll be in competition with the frogs.

Weather, temperature and rainfall

Summer temperature

Average

12°C and 25.3°C

Highest recorded

38.8°C

Winter temperature

Average

1.8°C and 12.5°C

Lowest recorded

-6.4°C

Rainfall

Wettest month

June

Driest month

September

The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

333mm

Facilities

  • You’ll need to bring your own cooking and drinking water
  • Wood fires are not permitted, but you’re encouraged to bring gas or fuel stoves.

Toilets

  • Non-flush toilets

Picnic tables

Carpark

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

Mobile safety

Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency + app before you visit, it helps emergency services locate you using your smartphone's GPS. Please note there is limited mobile phone reception in this park and you’ll need mobile reception to call Triple Zero (000).

Accessibility

Disability access level - medium

Assistance may be required to access this area.

Prohibited

Pets

Pets and domestic animals (other than certified assistance animals) are not permitted. Find out which regional parks allow dog walking and see the pets in parks policy for more information.

Smoking

NSW national parks are no smoking areas.

Nearby towns

Bowral (6 km)

Spring is tulip time while summer has fragrant roses and autumn, flowering bulbs. Bowral Tulip Festival runs from the end of September until early October; the Autumn Garden Festival is held in May.

www.visitnsw.com

Moss Vale (3 km)

Moss Vale is the rural centre of the Southern Highlands, with its regional livestock saleyards, farmers market and agricultural show. The meandering tree-lined main street and lush gardens make it one of the most picturesque towns in the region.

www.visitnsw.com

Nowra (40 km)

Nowra is a historic city and the commercial heart of the Shoalhaven. It's on the Shoalhaven River close to beaches and national parks.

www.visitnsw.com

Learn more

Cecil Hoskins picnic area is in Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

Aboriginal culture

Looking over Wingecarribee River, Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve. Photo: Nick Cubbin

The reserve lies within the traditional land of the Bong Bong people. Cultural, linguistic and spiritual knowledge associated with this area continues to be passed on today. NPWS works in collaboration with local Aboriginal communities to protect this rich heritage.

The weir and the wherefore

Lagoon at Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve. Photo: Nick Cubbin

Bong Bong weir was built in the 1920s to create a water supply for Moss Vale. The lagoon and swamp areas, which developed as a result of this weir, were declared a wildlife sanctuary in 1932. During the 1965-8 drought, Wingecarribee Council considered destroying the weir to allow water to be released for Berrima Cement Works, situated downstream. This proposal was so strongly opposed by the local community, however, that the idea was abandoned. The reserve supports stands of Paddys River box, native to the Moss Vale district and south of Jenolan, as well as snow gum banksia and a range of other native species. The lagoon itself is deep enough for large aquatic plants to thrive, such as tall spikerush, ribbonweed, yellow bladderwort and water milfoil. Other aquatic species include water snowflake, starwort, water primrose, river buttercup and nardoo.

  • Weir View walking track Weir view walking track at Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve is a short easy walk along the southern bank of the lagoon with scenic views and great birdwatching opportunities near Moss Vale.
  • Wingecarribee River walking track Wingecarribee River walking track is a short easy walk from Cecil Hoskins picnic area, near Moss Vale. Enjoy scenic river views and birdwatching opportunities in Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve.

Wetland creatures

Looking across the lagoon, Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve. Photo: OEH

Over 90 bird species inhabit the reserve and around one third of these, including pacific black ducks, black swans, dusky moorhens and grey teals, are waterbirds that are dependent on the lagoon. So if you're keen on bird watching, be sure to bring your binoculars along. Platypus and kangaroos also make their homes in and around the lagoon. The reserve also supports stands of Paddys River box, native to the Moss Vale district and south of Jenolan, as well as snow gum banksia and a range of other native species. The lagoon itself is deep enough for large aquatic plants to thrive, such as tall spikerush, ribbonweed, yellow bladderwort and water milfoil. Other aquatic species include water snowflake, starwort, water primrose, river buttercup and nardoo.

  • Weir View walking track Weir view walking track at Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve is a short easy walk along the southern bank of the lagoon with scenic views and great birdwatching opportunities near Moss Vale.
  • Wingecarribee River walking track Wingecarribee River walking track is a short easy walk from Cecil Hoskins picnic area, near Moss Vale. Enjoy scenic river views and birdwatching opportunities in Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve.

Who was Cecil Hoskins?

Bong Bong Weir located along Weir View walk, Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve. Photo: Nick Cubbin

When the reserve was gazetted in 1975, it was named after Sir Cecil Hoskins. This man was a local resident for 40 years who not only had a keen interest in creating parks and gardens, but also contributed to the purchase of the land for the reserve.

Education resources (1)

Cecil Hoskins picnic area, Cecil Hoskins Nature Reserve. Photo: Nick Cubbin