Thursday, July 27, 2006

New England Australia gorge country

In my last post I provided some references on the Country Party to support my historical analysis.

I was going to continue the historical theme, but an email from Nicole Payne (John Campbell Communication & Marketing - reminded me that this blog is meant to be about the life and culture of New England, not just its history. Nicole's email contained some wonderful pictures of New England's gorge country plus some supporting information.

In previous posts (see Geography of New England: overview, Geography of New England: impact of Great Diving Range) I have spoken about the region's geography and especially the impact of the the Great Dividing Range and its rugged eastern edge on New England's life and history.

The fast flowing coastal rivers have cut huge gorges through the escarpment, some stretching into the centre of the New England Tablelands. This creates a varied mix of spectacular country including major national parks running from the Barrington Tops in the south up to the Queensland border.

These parks can be accessed from either the coastal valleys or from the various Tablelands cities and towns. Each place offers access to different types of spectacular country.

There is not space in this entry to provide complete information - that deserves a number of entries. However, two examples will give an initial taste.

At Walcha on the Southern New England Tablelands, Oxley Explorer offers tours using "okas", 4WD vehicles seating up to 13 people, of some of the most spectacular of the gorges east of Walcha including the Apsley Gorge of the World Heritage listed Oxley Wild Rivers National Park.

Sixty four kilometres north of Walcha, the Central Tablelands city of Armidale offers access to another set of gorges. There Fleet Helicopters offers a number of helicopter tours across the local gorge country.

This includes Heli Adventure transport, a specialised service for independent travellers and groups who want to be dropped into rugged and wild country. Fleet Helicopters can provide transport, food and equipment drops for camping, hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, kayaking and fishing.


walcharoyalcafe said...

Built in 1889 as the Royal Hotel, this magnificent building was gutted by fire on the 28th August 1938. Later on that year the building was rebuilt and named the New Royal Hotel. The current owner, Toni Heaney purchased the property in December 2006 and converted the hotel to a hip 60’s style café and accommodation country establishment.

Dine either inside the chic café, on the veranda or alfresco under the magnificent willow tree. If it is a quick caffeine hit you need, then the Royal also offers take away tea, coffee and delicious cakes, slices and biscuits.

Choose from nine well-appointed comfortable rooms or the semi self-contained cottage located across the courtyard and the back of the main building.

Whether you are celebrating a special occasion, looking for a weekend escape or just a fantastic coffee, the Royal Café and accommodation is the perfect venue to exceed your every requirement.

Jim Belshaw said...

I almost deleted this comment because it struck me as a random SOE matter. I am leaving it because I actually want to promote Walcha. But if you want to promote the hotel, engage with me directly.