In the quaint heritage town of Rylstone, via the famous Bylong Valley Way, a broad range of exceptionally tasty modern food awaits. Fast becoming known for its wineries, yum cha + tea house, olive estates and local gastronomic delights, Rylstone is sure to impress the fussiest of foodies. All this, coupled with some of the most spectacular scenery in the region, we guarantee you will be surprised and delighted with what you find.
Rylstone’s charming 19th century photographic streetscape was settled in the 1830’s, making it one of the oldest settlements west of the Great Dividing Range. With many public houses, churches and private residences throughout the town made of local sandstone, it’s worth taking the time to wander the streets and capture its essence.
The town also acts as a gateway to the World Heritage-listed Wollemi National Park and the beautiful Bylong Valley, boasting some of the most spectacular natural heritage in the region. So nature-lovers, get your hiking boots on and explore the nearby wonders including Dunns Swamp and Ferntree Gully.
Growing each year in its popularity, the main street of Rylstone is also home to the district’s premier annual event ‘StreetFeast’ in November. Louee Street closes to traffic and opens to festival-goers, with a street market celebrating local food, produce, wine, art and craftwork. Settle into the afternoon with a long table long lunch surrounded by friends and locals, where live music and an electric atmosphere blends perfectly with the street scene.
Take a stroll around this must-visit town to browse boutique shops, enjoy a leisurely lunch or sip an ice cold beer at one of the local pubs. You may like to spend the afternoon at our boutique wine bar tasting locally produced wine, or jump in the car to take in a scenic drive or visit a nearby vineyard. One thing’s for sure, you’ll be spoilt for choice in Rylstone.
Once a private village and home to the largest cement works in the southern hemisphere, Kandos is now home to an eclectic array of unique businesses and creative artisans making it a place like no other. Enterprising locals have come up with plenty of ways to welcome visitors to their beloved town. Kandos’ working class heritage from its beginnings with the Cement Works has not been lost, and can be explored and absorbed at the locally run Kandos Museum.
The old railway station is now home to a licensed café and Visitor Information Centre, aptly named ‘Down the Track Café’ where new meaning is given to alfresco dining on the station platform. Alternatively you may like to enjoy the roaring open fire in what was once the station master’s room and baggage area complete with ex-railway seating and memorabilia.
Local craftsman Brett Nutting of Adhoc Furniture produces unique hand-crafted masterpieces from repurposed materials. His showroom is a must-visit. The town folk are proud of their creativity and have embarked on a ‘letterbox’ journey. Wander around town with a coffee in one hand and your camera in the other. You’ll find a range of growing feature letterboxes, a showcase of the town’s artistic flair.
And for the nature lovers out there, we are just a stone’s throw from Dunns Swamp, which was originally built to provide water for the Kandos Cement Works. Kandos is a great base to explore this popular camping and picnic area within the Wollemi National Park. We promise – it’s not a swamp! Set on the banks of the Cudgegong River and nestled amongst stunning sandstone pagoda rock formations, Dunns Swamp enjoys an outstanding biodiversity of plant and animal communities with at least 107 bird species spotted in the area. With a number of walking tracks, canoeing and swimming activities you’ll be spoilt for choice.
Kandos is also a true gateway to the Capertee Valley, the world’s second largest canyon (1 km wider than the Grand Canyon, but not quite as deep). These protected woodlands are also renowned for some of the best bird watching in the state. If you’re thinking of camping at Capertee, why not stop by Kandos to grab your essentials first.
And, for a small town, Kandos really puts on some pretty remarkable event celebrating Kandos’ physical and cultural environs and unique character. From the tyre smokin’ Street Machine in January to the biannual Garden Fair in November, a Bob Marley Festival in between and hugely popular biannual contemporary art festival Cementa, this town is not to be missed.