Gold mining made Gundagai both prosperous and a centre for bushranging, giving the town a romantic bush appeal that resulted in it becoming a byword for outback towns in Australia. A large number of outback stories, songs and poems reference Gundagai, including Jack O'Hagan's songs Where the Dog Sits on the Tuckerbox, Along the Road to Gundagai and When a Boy from Alabama Meets a Girl from Gundagai, as well as Banjo Patterson's The Road to Gundagai and the traditional ballad Flash Jack from Gundagai. The town is also mentioned in Henry Lawson's tale Scots of the Riverina and C.J. Dennis' The Traveller.
History In 1838, against the advice of the local Aboriginal people, the town was built on flood-prone flats on the northern banks of the Murrumbidgee River. In 1852, severe flooding virtually destroyed the European settlement and 83 of the 250 townsfolk lost their lives. The toll would have been higher but for two Aboriginals who came to the rescue in bark canoes, saving 48 people. The town relocated further up the slopes of Mt Parnassus, and the highest street in the original town, Sheridan Street, is now the main street.
Gundagai today is an ideal stopping point on the trip on the Hume between Sydney and Melbourne, having a range of accommodation, good services, and a few points of interest to see before moving on. The township is located close to the freeway, and doesn't required that much of a diversion.
Things to do
Wander down Sheridan Street for a look at some of the town's oldest buildings. Don't miss the old flour mill in Sheridan Lane, or the Prince Alfred Bridge, Australia's longest timber viaduct, built in 1866.
Throw in a line on the Murrumbidgee for trout, Murray cod, red fin, yellowbelly and bream. Take in the views from the scenic lookout atop Mt Parnassus. Browse the town's galleries and craft shops. Spot the headstones in the town's cemetery that were crafted by expert stonemason Frank Rusconi.
The Snake Gully Cup, in November, is a two-day horse-racing carnival that includes the Dog on the Tuckerbox Festival.
Turning Wave, in September, is a celebration of Irish/Australian culture with song, dance, poetry readings and traditional Irish hurling.
The Camp Draft and horse sale in March.
The astonishing Marble Masterpiece, a miniature Baroque Italian palace.
Saying g'day to the famous Dog on the Tuckerbox, which commemorates the bullocky drivers and drovers who camped at Five Mile Creek.
Sampling some baked goods at Gundagai Bakery, the oldest continuously operating bakery in New South Wales.
Dr Charles Gabriel's glass-plate photographs, which depict Gundagai life in the early 1900s, in the Gabriel Gallery.
Gundagai is located on the Hume Highway, the major route between Sydney and Melbourne, around 4 1/2 hours drive south of Sydney.
A bus service connects with the train services to Cootamundra, twice a day.
Gundagai has no taxi service. There is no public transport. The main town shopping strip has ample parking, as does just about everywhere else you might want to go.
(02)6944 1192 Built in 1864 & believed to be the longest continually running bakery in Australia
A souvenir of a dog sitting on a tucker box.
Gundagai Bakery is in the main shopping strip. Country bakery, HISTORIC GUNGAGAI BAKERY
Hours: Open Weekdays 8am-4pm; Sat 8am-2pm Payment Accepted: Cash Salad Bar: Made to order sandwiches, rolls and salads made on our huge hitop sandwich breads. Products: Fresh Baked:- Bread,Fancy Breads, Rolls,Cakes&Slices,Sweet Rolls,Yummy Pies, Sausage Rolls., Pasties, Caf'e Bar: Coffex Coffee & Billy Tea Description: Historic Gundagai Bakery oldest operating bakery in Australai.Prop:-Mitchell, Clive & Ann-Maree Dosser. All the flavour and freshness of country baked. Eat in or takaway fresh light meals and coffee Email: DOSSER2@BIGPOND.COM.AU
Sovereign Inn Gundagai is located just off the Hume Highway approximately halfway between Sydney & Melbourne. 26-28 West St Gundagai, NSW, Australia.It offers best rates online.