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David outside the Times Bakery.
David outside the Times Bakery.
Gulgong Pioneers' Museum.
The Ten Dollar Hotel.

Gulgong Town Guide

Thursday, September 13, 2001
The early gold rush town of Gulgong is favoured for its quirky ways. But did you know about its place on the ten-dollar note?

In the 1870s, gold was discovered in the tiny town of Gulgong, resulting in 20,000 people from all around the world going there to find their fortune. Between 1870 and 1876, 20 tonnes of gold was taken from the ground. The gold crusher was decommissioned in 1916, and today around 2000 people live there.

Its next brush with fame was when it became the town featured on the Australian 10-dollar note, which is why Gulgong is known as the Ten Dollar Town. The Aboriginal meaning of its name is "deep waterhole".

It is a proud reminder of Australia's past, with narrow streets meandering through buildings of timber, iron, brick and stone, some with lace verandahs. There are 170 heritage buildings and sites, and the Prince of Wales Opera House, built in 1870, is the country's second-oldest operating opera house.

The Pioneer Museum has a wonderful collection of pictures taken by Charles Bayliss and Beaufoy Merlin, documenting the town's history. The museum is open each day, and is dedicated to natural history, agriculture, gold mining, business and civic affairs, and the important gold rush days.

At the rear of the museum, a street scene has been created — it has a schoolhouse, blacksmith shop, cottage and stone inn.

Local products include wheat, oats, olives, grapes, sheep, wool and beef, and the town regularly does very well with tourism, recycling and heritage awards.

The Saint and Sinner Cafe de Gulgong is owned by Sue Parnell. It is named after a line from one of Henry Lawson's poems, and was purpose-built in 1935 as a Greek café. Today, it's a popular spot in town, with quirky touches such as mismatched furniture, toys for patrons to play with and a piano anyone can play.

The Ten Dollar Town Motel was formerly The Royal Oak Hotel. In the 1960s, the wooden part of the building was condemned and demolished and, 10 years on, it was purchased and restored to form part of the motel. It has 36 rooms, is family run and has a restaurant called Phoebe's, after Henry Lawson's aunt.


Four hours north-west of Sydney.


The Ten Dollar Town Motel has rooms starting at $79 per double per night. They have a six-day/five-night package, including luxury coach travel to and from Sydney, for $495 per person, twin-share.
Pioneer Museum entry is $5 for adults and $2 for children. They are open every day.
Please note prices are valid at time of transmission and to the best of our knowledge are inclusive of GST.

More information

Ten Dollar Town Motel
Mayne and Medley Street, Gulgong 2852
Ph: (02) 6374 1204 Fax: (02) 6374 2188
Prince of Wales Opera House: (02) 6374 1202
Gulgong Pioneer Museum: Ph/Fax: (02) 6374 1513
Saint and Sinner Cafe de Gulgong: Ph: (02) 6374 1343

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