Village walking track

Hill End Historic Site

Open, check current alerts 

Overview

Take an easy self-guided walk and discover the historic heritage of Hill End on Village walking track.

Accessibility
Medium
Distance
2km loop
Time suggested
1hr 30min - 2hrs
Grade
Grade 2
Opening times
Village walking track is open all year round. 
What to
bring
Sunscreen, hat, drinking water
Please note
Remember to take your binoculars if you want to go birdwatching.

Step back in time as you wander the historic streets of Hill End on Village walking track. Pick up a map from the Hill End General Store and take yourself on a self-guided walk to the many historic sites. There are also guided tours available, so if you want to get a more in-depth perspective, ask about Discovery tours.

The great thing about this short walk is that you can start and stop wherever you like. Great Western Store is an excellent place to start, with the historic photographic collection providing an excellent introduction to the history of the area. Or finish at General Store and enjoy picnicking at Bill Lyle Reserve after your walk?

Pop into some of the historic buildings as you stroll along, such as Northeys store, the post office and Royal Hotel. Stop to read the signage along the way, or just close your eyes and imagine what this thriving village would have been like.

For directions, safety and practical information, see visitor info

Also see

  • View of covered picnic shelter with picnic table and barbecue against a backdrop of trees and rustic shed.  Photo: John Spencer/DPIE

    Hospital picnic area

    Hospital picnic area is in Hill End Historic Site, near Village walking track. It’s a great spot to relax, connect with friends and enjoy a barbecue before you move on to the next art, culture or history attraction.

Map


Map legend

Map legend

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/walking-tracks/village-walking-track/local-alerts

General enquiries

Park info

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Village walking track.

Track grading

Grade 2

Learn more about the grading system Features of this track
  • Distance

    2km loop

  • Time

    1hr 30min - 2hrs

  • Quality of markings

    Clearly sign posted

  • Experience required

    No experience required

  • Gradient

    Flat

  • Steps

    Occasional steps

  • Quality of path

    Well-formed track

Getting there and parking

Village walking track is in the central precinct of Hill End Historic Site. To get there:

  • Continue driving on Hill End Road into the township, where it becomes Beyers Avenue.

Parking

Bus and car parking is available throughout the village.

Best times to visit

There are lots of great things waiting for you in Hill End Historic Site. Here are some of the highlights.

Autumn

With sunny, dry days and crisp evenings, it's a great time of year for a camping holiday at Hill End – head to the Village campground or the larger Glendora campground. You could even sign up as a Campground Host.

Spring

Flowers are at their best this time of the year - enjoy cherry blossoms and blooms in the historic cottage gardens.

Winter

The winter light is renowned among artists and photographers - you may even get some shots of snow .

Weather, temperature and rainfall

Summer temperature

Average

15°C and 27°C

Highest recorded

40.1°C

Winter temperature

Average

1°C and 15°C

Lowest recorded

-8.9°C

Rainfall

Wettest month

January

Driest month

April and May

The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

108.7mm

Facilities

  • Drinking water is limited or not available in this area, so it’s a good idea to bring your own.
  • Rubbish bins are not available, so please take your rubbish with you when leaving.

Maps and downloads

Safety messages

Bushwalking safety

If you're keen to head out on a longer walk or a backpack camp, always be prepared. Read these bushwalking safety tips before you set off on a walking adventure in national parks.

Mobile safety

Dial Triple Zero (000) in an emergency. Download the Emergency Plus 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

  • This walk follows sealed roads through the historic village of Hill End.
  • Some assistance may be required on sections where the road is uneven or sloping.

Medium access presents some minor difficulties, such as a grassy surface. You may require a little assistance to get around in some areas.

Permitted

Pets

You can walk your dog at this location. See other regional parks in NSW that have dog walking areas.

  • You will need to keep your dog on a leash at all times and remember to pick up after them.
  • Dangerous dogs and restricted breed dogs as defined under the Companion Animals Act must be muzzled at all times.
  • Dogs are not permitted inside buildings or on tours (other than certified assistance animals).
  • Dogs are not allowed within 10m of barbecues, picnic tables and children's playgrounds.

Prohibited

Drones

Flying a drone for recreational purposes is prohibited in this area. Drones may affect public enjoyment, safety and privacy, interfere with park operations, or pose a threat to wildlife. See the Drones in Parks policy.

This area may be a declared Drone Exclusion Zone, or may be subject to Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) rules for flying near airports, aerodromes and helicopter landing sites. See CASA's Drone Flyer Rules.

Commercial filming and photography

Commercial filming or photography is prohibited without prior consent. You must apply for permission and contact the local office.

Learn more

Village walking track is in Hill End Historic Site. Here are just some of the reasons why this park is special:

A past to cherish

Beyers Cottage, Hill End Historic Site. Photo: John Spencer

Artists have long gravitated to picturesque Hill End. Since the Second World War the scarred landscape has drawn artists such as Russell Drysdale, Donald Friend, John Olsen and Brett Whiteley to capture the striking scenery on canvas. The Hill End Artist in Residence Program is run by Bathurst Regional Art Gallery and continues this tradition, offering contemporary artists an opportunity to make the pilgrimage to Hill End. Take a walk in the same landscape that has moved so many artists. Please note: Selected works from the program previously on display at the Jean Bellette Gallery in the Visitor’s Centre, will be re-located to a new venue at a date to be advised. 

The gold rush hit nearby Bathurst in 1851 and Hill End, swept up in the frenzy, was settled in 1852. It wasn’t until almost 20 years later, however, that large-scale mining began. After most of the mining population had moved on, it was the Gold Centenary Celebrations in 1951 that were the catalyst for Hill End being recognised for its significant heritage value.

  • Capertee and Hill End 4WD camping tour Explore the stunning sights of Capertee, the Turon River and Hill End on a 4WD camping adventure with Adrenalin Offroad Centre.
  • Cornish Quartz roasting pits The quartz roasting pits are a short drive from Hill End and are a significant historical remnant of Australia’s earlier mining heritage.
  • Denningtons Cottage Denningtons Cottage is a heritage miner’s cottage built in 1858 in Hill End, and now home to ceramic artist studio.
  • Hill End gold 4WD adventures Hop on board a comfortable 4WD vehicle and enjoy a thrilling journey over rugged 4WD trails as you explore the Hill End and Sofala goldfields region. These excursions with Simmo’s Offroad Tours are a great way discover fascinating gold rush history and heritage. 
  • Hill End Heritage Centre Hill End Heritage Centre's interactive museum displays and historic information are the perfect introduction to any visit to Hill End Historic Site.

Mine for gold

Royal Hotel, Hill End Historic Site. Photo: John Spencer

Ever wondered how gold is separated from the rock it’s found in? Or want to know what a steam boiler or battery stamp’s used for? Hill End is full of places where you can learn all about mining gold. Visit the Colonial Gold Mining Company’s roasting kilns and battery buildings, enjoy a barbeque at the grounds of the Historic Hill End Hospital, check out the impressive collection of carriages and work machinery from the gold rush era housed close by, and don’t forget to book one of the many tours available while you’re there to make the most of your visit.

  • Bald Hill tourist mine Experience the underground world of a goldminer at Bald Hill tourist mine. A short walk or drive from Hill End, this guided tour is ideal for families and school groups.
  • Beaufoy Merlin lookout Beaufoy Merlin lookout offers spectacular views and an excellent vantage point to see the true scale of former mining activities. It’s also great for photography.
  • Hill End Heritage Centre Hill End Heritage Centre's interactive museum displays and historic information are the perfect introduction to any visit to Hill End Historic Site.

Plants and animals you may see

Animals

  • Superb fairy wren. Photo: Rosie Nicolai

    Superb fairy wren (Malurus cyaneus)

    The striking blue and black plumage of the adult male superb fairy wren makes for colourful bird watching across south-eastern Australia. The sociable superb fairy wrens, or blue wrens, are Australian birds living in groups consisting of a dominant male, mouse-brown female ‘jenny wrens’ and several tawny-brown juveniles.

Environments in this park

Education resources (1)