There’s still a track winding back to this heritage-filled town.

Story Anabel Dean  Photo Destination NSW

The drive along Homewood Road from Jugiong takes about an hour. The mainly dirt track across the Tumut River and along the Murrumbidgee isn’t the usual way into Gundagai – a town that’s midway between Melbourne and Sydney – but the publican at Jugiong’s Sir George Hotel assures patrons: “It’s the best bit of Australia you ever will see.” The track thwacks into an Australian landscape made familiar by Jack O’Hagan’s celebrated 1920s folk song ‘Along the Road to Gundagai’. Rain has freshened the scene so “the blue gums are growin’, and the Murrumbidgee’s flowin’”.

Leading into Gundagai on Sheridan Street, the now wide road passes historic buildings painted in heritage colours: the courthouse, the Criterion Hotel, the handsome 1929 theatre. The buildings stand as a reminder of a century of agricultural prosperity in a town that today services around 3600 people throughout the locality.

This story excerpt is from Issue #135

Outback Magazine: Feb/Mar 2021