Nowendoc National Park

Overview

Offering picnics, bushwalking, birdwatching and bush camping in the NSW Northern Tablelands, beautiful Nowendoc National Park sits off Thunderbolts way, near Walcha.

Read more about Nowendoc National Park

Beautiful Nowendoc National Park sits in rugged escarpment terrain in the NSW Northern Tablelands, 70km south of Walcha. Boasting spectacular diverse scenery, including moist eucalypt forest with rainforest hugging the creek lines, the park offers ample opportunity for quiet recreation.

Experience bushwalking amongst wildflowers and visit nearby canyons and waterfalls. Enjoy birdwatching and have a picnic or take a dip. The park’s creeks run throughout the year, though winter swimming is only for the brave.

Accessible only by 4WD, Nowendoc National Park protects a range of threatened plants and animals and is also known for its Aboriginal and pastoral heritage.

Campers seeking solitude will love the tranquil surroundings of Jacky Barkers campground, where you’ll find picnic tables and other facilities. You can also stay at nearby Karamea Homestead, in neighbouring Curracabundi National Park.

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/visit-a-park/parks/nowendoc-national-park/local-alerts

Contact

See more visitor info

Visitor info

All the practical information you need to know about Nowendoc National Park.

Getting there and parking

Get driving directions

Get directions

    From Nowendoc:

    • Drive 6.5km south of Nowendoc on Thunderbolts Way, turn right into Wrights Road, and then access the park through Nowendoc State Forest.
    • Alternatively, drive 18.5km north-west of Nowendoc on Thunderbolts Way, turn left into Wild Cattle Creek Road, and access the park through Nowendoc State Forest.
    • Please note: there is no public access on Wild Cattle Creek Road through the Wild Cattle Creek property.

    Park entry points

    Parking

    Road quality

    • Unsealed roads

    Vehicle access

    • All roads require 4WD vehicle

    By bike

    Check out the Bicycle information for NSW website for more information.

    By public transport

    For information about public transport options, visit the NSW country transport info website

    Best times to visit

    There are lots of great things waiting for you in Nowendoc National Park. Here are some of the highlights.

    Autumn

    With its sunny days and cool nights, autumn is a real treat. Go bushwalking along the leafy tracks and follow the meandering Myall Creek, which flows all year round.

    Spring

    Come to the park in spring to feast your eyes on wildflowers. The banksias turn the brightest yellow, while the flame trees live up to their name, transforming into red blooms.

    Summer

    Beat the summer heat with a swim in the creek and crystal-clear streams. Nothing beats nature when it comes to refreshment.

    Winter

    Visit in winter to recharge your batteries with crisp, clean air and even the chance of snow. Many say the valley looks even more beautiful cloaked in early-morning winter fog. See if you agree.

    Weather, temperature and rainfall

    Summer temperature

    Average

    11°C and 28°C

    Highest recorded

    36.5°C

    Winter temperature

    Average

    -2°C and 11°C

    Lowest recorded

    -14.5°C

    Rainfall

    Wettest month

    January

    Driest month

    April

    The area’s highest recorded rainfall in one day

    110.4mm

    Facilities

    Maps and downloads

    Safety messages

    However you discover NSW national parks and reserves, we want you to have a safe and enjoyable experience. Our park and reserve systems contrast greatly so you need to be aware of the risks and take responsibility for your own safety and the safety of those in your care.

    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).

    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

    Gloucester (72 km)

    Famous for gold deposits and the bushranger Captain Thunderbolt, Gloucester is located in the north Hunter region, east of Barrington Tops. The nearby state forests and national parks are ideal for walking, camping and outdoor adventure sports.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Walcha (79 km)

    Walcha is the gateway to some of the best adventure experiences in Australia. Expect gorges, rainforests, waterfalls and wilderness. Enjoy helicopter flights, 4WD tours and fishing, as well as guided bushwalks in some of Australia's most rugged terrain.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Armidale (143 km)

    During autumn the parks and gardens around Armidale show their beautiful colours. Enjoy a drive along the Waterfall Way, stopping at waterfalls and craggy gorges in the rugged countryside.

    www.visitnsw.com

    Learn more

    Nowendoc National Park is a special place. Here are just some of the reasons why:

    An intriguing history

    Jacky Barkers campground, Nowendoc National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    Discover the area’s rich Aboriginal heritage and European settlement history. Jacky Barkers Creek has a special connection with one Aboriginal family, the Wrights. You can visit Wrights Hut, built in the early 1960s from materials recycled from older slab huts nearby. In 1837, the Australian Agricultural Company (AAC) established Nowendoc Station, and in 1846 the AAC reached the top of Hungry Hill immediately east of Jacky Barkers Creek.

    Beautiful waterways

    Myall Creek, Nowendoc National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    In Nowendoc National Park, it’s impossible not to be tempted by the cool, clear waters of Myall and Jacky Barkers creeks. Take your pick of streams and rock pools, and swim in the shade of river oaks. The park also protects the headwaters of the Barnard River – a major tributary of the Manning River, first explored by European explorer, Henry Dangar.

    Impressive and important

    Local vegetation, Nowendoc National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    Nowendoc National Park is not only beautiful to look at, it also serves a very important purpose – protecting old growth forest and other plants and animals. The park is home to five threatened plants and 18 threatened animal species. You may be lucky enough to spot an endangered brush-tailed rock wallaby or spotted-tail quoll, while a night walk could give you glimpses of threatened masked, powerful or sooty owls. Surveys have also recorded seven species of frog, 14 species of reptile, 78 native bird species, 19 native mammals and 14 species of bat in this park. Be sure to tread carefully as you walk, and don’t forget those binoculars if you’d like to go bird watching.

    Simplicity and solitude

    Jacky Barkers campground, Nowendoc National Park. Photo: John Spencer

    This rugged, remote park gives you the opportunity to feel at one with both nature and your thoughts. There are so many ways to experience the park’s diverse natural beauty. Breathe the pure air and feel the temperature drop as you travel down to the valley floor.

    Education resources (1)

    What we're doing

    Nowendoc National Park has management strategies in place to protect and conserve the values of this park. Visit the OEH website for detailed park and fire management documents.

    Creek line, Nowendoc National Park. Photo: John Spencer