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Dubbo And The Western Plains Zoo

A Giraffe in the Western Plains Zoo
A Giraffe in the Western Plains Zoo
Dubbo is a thriving outback city known for its extraordinary zoo featuring everyone's favourite animals from Africa, Australia, Asia, North America and many other locations. It is a fantastic base to visit many of the other towns in the central west tablelands and is ideal as a destination or stopover for your campervan trip. You will find Dubbo almost smack bang in the heart of New South Wales, just off the Mitchell Highway.

Over the years, the tourist industry has been growing rapidly as word spreads about all this city has to offer. Dubbo lies right next to the Macquarie River, one of the main inland rivers in New South Wales. There is a great walk along this river which also takes you through the Dubbo parklands, or you can find your own fishing spot and just enjoy the peace of the outback. Along the banks you also will find the Dundullimal Homestead. Don't be put off by the name. It is the oldest timber slab house in Australia (which is still standing!).

There are plenty of caravan parks to choose from in this region including the award winning Dubbo City Caravan Park which is central to most of the Dubbo attractions, shops and restaurants. There is also the Westview Caravan Park which is set on 10 km of grass and shady trees. It's a great option if you need a quiet place to unwind after a full day of sightseeing.

Within the city, you can take a Heritage Walk which will give you a closer look at the historic buildings with are found throughout Dubbo such as the Courthouse, some of the older churches and the Dubbo Military Museum. You can't miss the Old Dubbo Gaol which uses holograms to bring you a fascinating account of the history of the prison system in the 1800's.

The Western Plains Zoo is why many tourists visit Dubbo. There are over 800 different animals throughout the 300 hectare zoo. It is almost a relief to visit a zoo where native animals have been given enough space to feel as though they are free. To circumnavigate the 6km track to see all the animals, you have the option of walking (which will take a while), hiring a mini-moke, driving your campervan hire or cycling, which is a popular option.

So, what animals will you find here in the open range? There are the African favourites such as zebras, giraffes, elephants, hippos, lions and cheetahs. Then you have the endangered species such as the white rhinoceros, Galapagos turtle and the Bengal tiger. What about the ring tailed lemurs, made famous by Madagascar, and the antelopes and echidnas? The whole family will be fascinated to see and sometimes pat wildlife they normally would never get to see in a lifetime. It's a great zoo not just for the animals also the conservation taking place.

There is something about visiting an outback city that you can't put into words. At night you can see a billion stars lining the sky, and one place you can do this well is at the Dubbo Observatory. The whole family will love the slide show of the universe and the giant telescope to see the galaxy at its best.

Getting to know the locals and browsing through the shops is also an enjoyable experience, and you will be sure to discover travel tips from those who know the city best. You don't have to stick to the city centre, further out is the beautiful Macquarie Valley which is known for its wine making and natural attractions such as Wellington Caves. There are also a number of surrounding cities that are worth a visit, such as Orange, Bathurst, Gilgandra, Parkes and Forbes. Your visit to Dubbo , its zoo and the surrounding districts with campervan hire Sydney will never be forgotten. It is the perfect place to unwind and be captivated at the same time by the beauty and wonder of the attractions and scenery.

Jen Brewer

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