Your first stop in Gundagai (after visiting Five Mile Creek and the Dog on the Tuckerbox if you have driven in from the Sydney direction) should be the Visitor Information Centre located pretty much in the centre of town.
The reasons for this are three-fold:
1. To arm yourself with a copy of a brochure entitled ‘Explore Gundagai’. This brochure includes brief details of the town’s main attractions, a map, and most importantly the outline of a self-guided walk – the Two Foot Tour (which can, incidentally, be driven if you feel unable to walk). The brochure outlines two walking options – a two km or a four km walk. Given my belief that the best way to see somewhere is on foot, I would naturally select the longer one but time available to me meant I could only do the 2 km walk. A few days later when passing through Gundagai again I drove to the extra few (3) attractions covered on the longer walk and having done so I suggest you do the same and save your time for a few worthwhile outlying attractions not included on either walk.
2. To visit two specific attractions, one within the Information Centre – Rusconi’s Marble Masterpiece – and one across the road from the front door – the Dad, Dave, Mum and Mabel copper statues.
3. To park your car so that you can go on the walk referred to at 1 above or otherwise explore the town. There is ample free parking here including space for caravans, campervans (RVs) and buses.
While I didn’t have much interaction with staff here, from what I did have they were very approachable, pleasant and helpful.
The centre also hosts a small selection of gifts, drinks and other knickknacks together with a small historical display worthy a quick look. Toilets are available, outside, behind the Centre.
My accompanying pictures are from the small historical display focusing on songs and poetry associated with Gundagai. The song depicted in my main picture is ‘When a boy from Alabama meets a girl from Gundagai’, a World War II favourite, written by Jack O’Hagen in 1942 when the streets of Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane were packed with US troops. O’Hagen, who incidentally never visited Gundagai, penned his most famous song, again about Gundagai, in 1922 – ‘Along the Road to Gundagai’.
“There’s a track winding back
To an old-fashioned shack,
Along the road to Gundagai;
Where the blue gums are growing,
And the Murrumbidgee’s flowing
Beneath that sunny sky,
Where my Daddy and Mummy are waiting for me
And the pals of my childhood once more I will see;
Then no more will I roam,
When I’m heading straight for home
Along the road to Gundagai”.
‘Along the Road to Gundagai’ is almost up there with ‘Walzing Matilda’ in terms of popularity. It became a very popular World War II song and later became the theme song for Dad and Dave, a radio show which ran for many years. More about Dad and Dave in another review.
Unless I state otherwise all my Gundagai reviews, to follow, relate to sights, etc along (or within close vicinity off) the 2 kms Gundagai Two Feet Tour (walk). Note also that I have not written a review for all sights referred to along the walk.
Opening hours: Daily 9am – 4.30pm .. closed 12.30 – 1pm (closed Christmas Day)
Address: 249 Sheridan Street