Just 30 minutes north of Canberra, Gundaroo is home to some of the region’s best examples of mid and late 19th century buildings and offers visitors a range of experiences—from fine food and wine to contemporary art, local produce and crafts. Located on the Yass River, Gundaroo is home to Grazing, a first-class restaurant in the old Royal Hotel and the Cork Street Café where the pizzas are worth the drive. Gundaroo is wonderful for a day trip or weekend escape.
Gundaroo is half an hour to an hour from Canberra, by car. The easiest route is to travel along Northbourne Avenue and the Federal Highway, turning at the Gundaroo/Gunning/Sutton turnoff (about five minutes from the ACT border.) It is then around twenty minutes to Gundaroo, through Sutton along Gundaroo Road. Two alternate routes are possible - travelling along Mulligan's Flat Road from Gungahlin, and travelling along Sutton Road and Gundaroo Road from Queanbeyan.
You must be aware that these roads are dangerous at night if you are not used to driving in the country. Wildlife is a constant hazard, collision with a kangaroo can result in serious damage to your car and to you. Drive slowly, especially if it's raining.
Gundaroo is a small village, so parking your car and walking is the best way to get around. Most of the attractions listed below will be in walking distance of each other.
- Old Saint Luke’s Studio, Shingle Hill Way, ☎ 02 6236 8197 ([email protected]), . Open Sat & Sun, most Public Hols 10.30am–5pm. When potters Ian Jones and Moraig McKenna met inside a kiln, sparks flew. Their passion for each other, pottery and their home, studio and gallery, in the 1848 Old Saint Luke’s Church, makes this a must-see hotspot of the region. Ian and Moraig specialise in wood-fired ceramics. Their work is finished in an impressive nine-metre ‘anagama’ kiln, that is fired two to three times a year for up to five days. It’s the ash that delivers a unique effect making these works highly sought after around the world – join them each weekend or at one of the after-firing garden sales. edit
Check opening hours before setting off to Gundaroo for lunch or dinner, otherwise you could end up hungry.
- Cork Street Gallery, ☎ 02 6236 8217. Thu–Sun dinner Fri–Sun lunch, most Public Hols. If freshly made gourmet pizzas tickle your tastebuds or lovely homemade cakes and biscuits, including a gluten free selection, are your thing, then a visit to Bridget Hinves’ Cork Street Café is a must. Located in the historic police stables, the Café oozes with character with polished floorboards and an open kitchen – you can enjoy watching the chefs at work and kids can even create dough sculptures. The courtyard adds an alfresco option and is perfect for relaxed catch-ups with friends and family. Cork Street has an unequivocal philosophy of fresh food and local produce and you can taste the difference. edit
- Grazing, Cnr Cork & Harp St, ☎ +61 02 6236 8777 ([email protected]), . Open Thurs–Sat dinner Fri–Sun & most Public Hols lunch. Grazing is an icon on the Canberra-region dining scene. Located in the 1865 historic Royal Hotel, this treasure has rooms for all occasions and five open fireplaces that blaze through winter. Chef Tom Moore and his team deliver seasonal menus in generous portions, often featuring produce from the impressive kitchen garden out the back. The food is stylishly unpretentious and is complimented by a wine list made entirely from local drops—its all part of the commitment to local and seasonal product. Grazing is more than a name, it’s a philosophy and you’ll remember the experience for years to come. edit
- Gundaroo Colonial Inn, 23 Cork Street Gundaroo NSW 2620, ☎ 02 6236 8155 ([email protected]), . Open Crowes Bar Mon–Tues 3pm–8.00pm, Wed–Thurs 3pm–9pm, Fri 3pm–12pm, Sat 12am–11pm,Sun 12pm–8pm, Public Hols from 10amCrowes Restaurant Lunch Sat–Sun 12pm–2.30pm,Dinner Wed–Sun from 6pm. For George and Carole Nicola a Sunday afternoon drive to Gundaroo was life changing. ‘It was like coming home’ says George. From that moment, the couple decided that they wanted to be part of Gundaroo. A few years on they jumped at the chance to be part of the history of The Gundaroo Colonial Inn. The delightful 1872 hotel, also known as Matt Crowe’s Wine Bar, has been lovingly restored and is home to icy cold beer on tap, wholesome country-style food, great live entertainment and accommodation while maintaining its wine bar roots. For good food, friendly atmosphere and a top drop it, is a great spot to be and where good friends meet. edit
- Mallee Gum Cottage, 3 Rosamel St, ☎ 02 6236 8366 ([email protected]), . Sue Adams was a bubbly librarian who secretly lived for her garden. A people person, she delights at people enjoying their Mallee Gum stay. No cerebral minimalist styling here, this enchanting garden-cottage B&B will take you back to Nanna’s house and a slower gear. Curl up before an open fire with a book on native birds from their pocket library and wake up to the tantalising smell of Bungendore bacon, before tucking into organic free-range eggs and tasty local produce. For lunch and dinner take a leisurely stroll to award-winning dining at the Cork Street Café, and renowned restaurant, Grazing. Open 7 days. edit