17 BEST ACTIVITIES TO DO IN VISIT GOULBURN

ADVERTISEMENT

17 BEST ACTIVITIES TO DO IN VISIT GOULBURN

17 BEST ACTIVITIES TO DO IN VISIT GOULBURN

LEARN MORE ABOUT 17 BEST ACTIVITIES TO DO IN VISIT GOULBURN AND DISCOVER THIS AMAZING AUSTRALIAN TOWN

goulburn things to do

17 BEST ACTIVITIES TO DO IN VISIT GOULBURN

The fact that Goulburn is Australia’s first inland city might surprise you. In Goulburn, an ancient city known for its majestic cathedrals and grand structures, one may find a lot of fascinating things to do.

1- DISCOVER GOULBURN’S GRAND BUILDINGS

One of the main things to do in Goulburn for free is to wander the streets admiring the architecture.

Built in a potpourri of eclectic architectural styles, Goulburn’s architecture is subtle and the best way to appreciate the city is to take yourself on a self-guided heritage walking tour.

Majestic Victorian Italianate halls sit side-by-side with Art Deco buildings. Edwardian, Classic Revival and Spanish Mission styles dot the town, while rows of Victorian terraces lurk in the side streets.

Located in the Southern Tablelands, at the confluence of the Wollondilly and Mulwaree Rivers, Goulburn Plains was first discovered by explorer Hamilton Hume in 1818.

The first occupants were free settlers who were enticed to the area – which was named in honour of the under-secretary of state for the colonies, Henry Goulburn – by land grants.

By 1841 Goulburn had grown into a centre for sheep farming, with a courthouse, police barracks, churches, hospital, post office and a population of around 1200.

In 1863, the British government proclaimed Goulburn as Australia’s first inland city and from the architectural legacy left by the British, it’s evident that Goulburn was once destined to become one of Australia’s great cities.

2- EXPLORE GRAFTON STREET

Grafton Street is one of the more subtle Goulburn attractions and a great way to discover the city’s history.

Start at Grafton Street, the original village from which the city grew around.

Early settler cottages stand alongside buildings of more recent architecture.

Spend a couple of hours strolling down Grafton Street reading the plaques on some of these historic cottages. From governor to butcher, these plaques reveal intriguing tales about the original settlers.

Further along the street, on the top of the AMP building stands an intricate sculpture of the Goddess of Peace and Plenty.

This grand insurance building, with its heavy cedar doors, sits on the site where George Adams once ran his butcher shop.

George Adams later went on to become the founder of the Tattersall lottery sweeps.

3- ADMIRE GOULBURN’S CATHEDRALS

One of the things to do in Goulburn is to visit its stunning cathedrals and churches.

St Peter and St Paul’s Cathedral has an attractive bluestone façade while the sandstone building of St Saviour’s Anglican Cathedral towers above the city.

In the evenings, the cathedrals are floodlit to create an impressive outline against Goulburn’s clear starry sky.

Visitors to St Saviour’s are usually astounded to discover such a breathtakingly grand piece of architecture located in a regional centre of approximately 21,000 residents.

High archways are supported by enormous sandstone pillars, while Kauri beams adorn its ceiling.

Stunning 19th-century stained glass windows with vibrant colours depict tales from the Bible.

The building was designed by one of the leading experts in English Decorated Gothic Architecture, architect Edmund Thomas Blacket who also designed St Mary’s and St Andrew’s Cathedrals in Sydney, as well as the main buildings of the University of Sydney.

An imposing Fosters & Andrew’s organ, which was shipped to Australia in 1884, continues to fill its main hall with uplifting music.

Operas, international choir performances and orchestral performances are held regularly in the cathedral.

  • Guide To Crookwell, NSW
  • Murwillumbah Travel Guide
  • 10 Amazing Luxury Escapes in NSW
  • 5 Day Trips From Sydney
  • Where To Stay In Sydney
  • Discover Sydney’s Secret Historic Spots
  • Visiting the NSW South Coast
  • Motorcycle Tour of the South Coast
  • Pie Festival In The Southern Highlands
  • Sydney Whale Watching Cruise

4- VISIT GOULBURN RAIL HERITAGE CENTRE

When Goulburn was an administrative centre for the railways, it was a much more important city than it is today.

This, you’ll discover at the Goulburn Rail Heritage Centre.

The centre is a workshop museum run by a group of volunteers who are passionate about preserving Goulburn’s railway history.

The Goulburn roundhouse serviced locomotives between 1918 and 1986.

It has a working locomotive turntable on which locomotives can still be turned around.

The stalls are filled with historic carriages and locomotives in various stages of refurbishment.

Check out the carriages, antique tools and machinery.

There’s an old motorised carriage which was used as a mobile pay office for railway workers in NSW.

This particular carriage was also made famous when Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip rode in it.

5- GOULBURN BREWERY

Visiting the Goulburn Brewery is one of the fun things to do with friends.

The Goulburn Brewery (where the television series The Potato Factory was filmed) has a set of buildings where brewery activities were conducted (from brewing to malting and milling).

Take a tour of Australia’s oldest brewery, sample beer or have a spot of lunch.

6- VISIT THE ROCKY HILL WAR MEMORIAL

Overlooking the city is the Rocky Hill War Memorial, a 20-metre floodlit tower with a sweeping aircraft beacon.

The memorial base is inscribed with the names of 2,500 Goulburnites who served in World War I, while the caretaker’s cottage has been converted into a museum.

7- SEE THE GOULBURN HISTORIC WATERWORKS

The old waterworks is another interesting place to visit in Goulburn.

Another interesting relic of the past is the Goulburn Historic Waterworks Museum.

The museum is manned by enthusiastic volunteers who are passionate about Goulburn’s history.

Before 1886 the residents of Goulburn collected water in tanks or wells or purchased supplies from a carter.

The waterworks was installed on the Wollondilly River and powered by what is now Australia’s largest working steam-driven beam engine.

Water was pumped from the river to a filtration plant and reservoir before being gravity fed to residents of the city.

The 1883 Appleby beam engine and a Hicks Hargreaves Corliss valve steam engine are operated once a month for the public.

Set on the banks of the Wollondilly River, its pump house and working steam engines are unique features.

The lovely riverside setting is the perfect spot for a picnic.

8- ADMIRE THE GOULBURN COURT HOUSE

Goulburn courthouse is a fine Colonial building.

The Goulburn Court House was designed by colonial architect James Barnett, one of the most respected architects of the day.

Barnett was also the designer of Sydney’s General Post Office.

It was in this very courthouse where Australian law was passed making it illegal to harbour bushrangers.

9- TAKE A PHOTO AT THE BIG MERINO

The Big Merino in Goulburn is one of the landmarks of NSW.

The Big Merino is a symbol of Goulburn’s agricultural history and its standing as a centre for Merino wool growing and agriculture.

Royal Letters Patent from Queen Victoria proclaimed Goulburn a city on 14 March 1863 and Australia’s first inland city quickly grew into a main administrative centre.

Inside is a shop that stocks high-quality wool and Australian-made products like fine wool jumpers, boots, socks, toys and cosmetics.

It’s worth checking out if you’re looking for a quality souvenir or gift.

Next to it is a large service station with fast food, cafes and clean toilets.

For more things to do in NSW, read:

  • 25 Things To Do In The Blue Mountains
  • 22 Things To Do In Bowral
  • 20 Things To Do In Wollongong
  • 20 Things To Do In Yamba
  • 19 Things To Do In Port Macquarie
  • 17 Things To Do In Tamworth
  • 17 Things To Do In Goulburn
  • 17 Things To Do In Mudgee
  • 12 Things To Do In Hunter Valley
  • 18 Things To Do In Kingscliff
  • The Carrington Hotel Katoomba
  • 16 Things To Do In Maitland
  • 15 Things To Do In Byron Bay
  • 15 Things To Do In Newcastle
  • 16 Things To Do In Port Stephens
  • 10 Things To Do In Kiama
  • 12 Things To Do In Windsor
  • 20 Things To Do In Sydney For Couples
  • 20 Things To Do In Sydney At Night
  • 17 Things To Do In Central Coast
  • 19 NSW Country Towns
  • Reflections Holiday Parks

10- VISIT THE GOULBURN REGIONAL ART GALLERY

Goulburn Regional Art Gallery is a hub with displays of contemporary art that is intended to provoke debate.

The gallery’s growing collection has 563 works, mostly part of a permanent collection showcasing Australian artists.

Two works in the collection came from the Moffitt Bequest in the 1950s when Dr Charles Gordon Moffitt worked with modernist painter Roy de Maistre to create a colour therapy treatment for patients at Goulburn’s Kenmore Hospital.

De Maistre had already come up with his own colour theory based on musical scales.

The collection includes textiles, ceramics, paintings, video installations and other works using various mediums.

The Gallery Store is a good place to shop for a gift

Goulburn Regional Art Gallery is located in the Civic Centre on Bourke Street, Goulburn (entre through Church Street). Admission is free.

11- GO SHOPPING AT A MARKET

Saturday is market day in Goulburn and the local markets are great for gifts, food, farm implements and a place to buy home decorations that have a local touch. Here’s a list of Goulburn markets:

1ST SATURDAY OF EACH MONTH

Lilac Country Markets – 9 am to 2 pm every month except for January at Goulburn Public School, 204 Bourke Street, Goulburn.

St Saviour’s Community Craft Market – 9 am to 2 pm except for January at St Saviour’s Cathedral Hall, Bourke Street, Goulburn.

2ND SATURDAY OF EACH MONTH

Parkside Community Markets is a Rotary market from 8.30 am to 1.30 pm at Montague Street (next to Belmore Park) in Goulburn.

TWICE A YEAR

Riversdale Car Boot Sale – 9 am to 2 pm on the 3rd Saturday in March and September at Riversdale Homestead, Goulburn. It’s also a good way to turn your unwanted items into cash.

12- DRESS UP FOR THE STEAMPUNK VICTORIANA FAIR

Dressing up in Victorian gear like these time travellers at the Victoriana Steampunk Fair is one of the fun things to do in Goulburn each year.

Get into the groove at this retro-futuristic fair by coming dressed up in character.

The fair pays homage to the industrial progress made by mankind through the invention of all things powered by steam.

Set on the grounds of Goulburn’s Historic Waterworks, the Steampunk Victoriana Fair is a chance to be part of local creativity that melds the industrial age with the possibilities of the future.

The Steampunk Victoriana Fair in Goulburn is usually in October.

13- LISTEN TO MUSIC AT THE AUSTRALIAN BLUES FESTIVAL

Each February, the streets of Goulburn becomes a vibrant showcase of blues and roots talent where you can tap your feet to the beats belted out by home-grown and international performers.

Don’t miss the busking competition, which is a fun part of the festival and a chance for local buskers to win a spot in next year’s lineup.

The festival is held in 10 venues around Goulburn, including the main stage at Belmore Park.

Entry is free but some venues, such as the clubs and hotels may have age restrictions.

When: Second week in February.

14- GO TO THE GOULBURN SHOW

The Goulburn Show has been running since 1880 and is a fun family day out with show bags, rides, amusement park attractions and food.

Being an agricultural region, of course, there’s a focus on farm and machinery displays along with animal shows, equestrian events and dog shows while the blacksmithing and woodchopping displays are fun to watch.

A cool part of the show are the displays of vintage farm machinery and vintage, classic and historic cars.

The Goulburn Show is usually held around Easter time in March.

15- VISIT BELMORE PARK

There’s more than meets the eye at Belmore Park in Goulburn.

Belmore Park is a lovely green space in the middle of the city to have a picnic or sit and sip coffee, however, you’d be surprised at how many memorials and fountains there are in the park.

Your eye might be drawn to the Lady Belmore oak tree, which was planted by the wife of the then governor in 1869 to celebrate the opening of the railway line between Sydney and Goulburn.

But you might also be interested to take a look at the Temperance Fountain, which was built in 1886 by the Temperance Society because at the time there were 74 hotels and the temperance movement was against alcohol.

The sculpture was made out of sandstone and designed as a drinking fountain.

The Victorian architecture is flanked by two stone piers (erected in 1902) to commemorate the coronation of Edward VII.

Also in the park, there’s the Quota Club Wishing Well constructed in 1959, a Victorian band rotunda (1897), Knowlman Memorial (1910) to commemorate the former mayor, Hollis fountain (1898), Davis memorial and a glasshouse conservatorium.

Don’t miss the Cenotaph Memorial constructed in 2002 in honour of 3000+ locals who served in WWII and other wars as well as the Boer War Memorial (1904).

The Meridian plaque is a reminder of the transit of Venus (when Venus passes between the earth and the sun), which was recorded in 1874 here by astronomers.

The longitude and latitude of Goulburn were calculated using this information.

The last transit of Venus occurred in 2012 and the next is in expected to happen in 2117.

Another interesting fact about Belmore Park is that from 1910 to 1926, the area was a miniature zoo housing a collection of animals.

16- DRIVE AROUND THE SOUTHERN TABLELANDS

Going for a drive around the region is one of the things to do to soak up the rural vibe.

A thirty minutes drive north-west of Goulburn are the undulating hills of the Southern Tablelands.

The town of Crookwell is surrounded by the villages of Binda, Laggan, Grabben Gullen, Tuena and Bigga.

Wildlife such as kangaroos, wallabies and wombats can be found roaming around the country lanes at dusk while old stone ruins dot the landscape.

Another fun way to explore is to go touring on a motorcycle through the Southern Tablelands.

17- EXPLORE WOMBEYAN CAVES

Take a day trip from Goulburn to explore the Wombeyan Caves.

I resisted visiting Wombeyan Caves for years because of the winding road to the caves but having visited, I can report that the caves are impressive.

They have huge cathedral-ceilinged cavers, cave coral, stalactites, stalagmites, helictites and all the features you would expect to find in caves.

There are three caves in the 580 ha Wombeyan Karst Conservation Reserve and a swimming hole – Fig Tree Cave (which you can wander around on your own) or Wollondilly Cave or Junction Cave.

Wollondilly and Junction Caves can only be accessed on a guided tour.

Wollondilly has three sets of metal staircases to climb and you’ll get a close look at some of the cave’s features.

Tours can fill up quickly and on the day we visited, the Wollondilly tour had 47 people.

There’s a bit of an uphill hike to the mouth of the caves and if you prefer a more leisurely experience with no one around, exploring Fig Tree Cave on your own is a cool experience.

Camping is available and there’s enough to do if you’re staying for a couple of nights.

The Wombeyan Caves Karst Conservation Reserve is about a one-hour drive from Goulburn.

Check Also

EXPLORING THE SMALL TOWN OF BADEN-BADEN

ADVERTISEMENT EXPLORING THE SMALL TOWN OF BADEN-BADEN EXPLORING THE SMALL TOWN OF BADEN-BADEN By no …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d