There are 20 national parks sprinkled throughout the region, and six have gained World-Heritage status, including Oxley Wild Rivers, Gibraltar Range, Washpool, Tooloom, Koreelah and New England National Park.
Explore the abundance of waterfalls found throughout these national parks. The iconic falls not to be missed on your visit include Apsley and Tia Falls east of Walcha, Wollomombi Gorge and Ebor Falls along Waterfall Way, Dangars Gorge south-east of Armidale and Boonoo Boonoo Falls near Tenterfield.
For views you won’t forget, head to one of the many spectacular lookouts, such as Raspberry Lookout east of Glen Innes and Point Lookout in the New England National Park. Or for the more daring, a climb up Cathedral Rock near Ebor or Bald Rock near Tenterfield will deliver unbeatable views of either unique granite outcrops or broad vistas of the surrounding wilderness.
Easy accessibility is one of the major drawcards of New England High Country’s attractions, with well-maintained walking tracks leading visitors from the carpark to the lookouts, waterfalls or views of gorges.
Put on your walking shoes and head to one of the many bushwalks, which range from short tramps to multi-day hikes. For serious hikers, the Green Gully Track, New England Wilderness Walk or Washpool World Heritage Walk might be right down your alley.
The mountain biking tracks through Washpool, Bald Rock, Boonoo Boonoo and Basket Swamp national parks are well worth a visit. For a truly unique way to see the region, try out the Bicentennial National Trail. This is suitable for both mountain bikers and horse riders.
Take part in a piece of the region’s history and try your hand at fossicking in the rivers around Uralla and Glen Innes. Fossicking is an age-old pastime in New England High Country, with Inverell supplying 75% of the world’s sapphire market during the boom of the 1970s. Visit Emmaville Mining Museum to view more than 4000 gem and mineral specimens and displays of the old mines. Anglers can enjoy fishing for rainbow and brown trout, which thrive in the lightly fished streams and purpose-built dams throughout the region. Three times the size of Sydney Harbour, Copeton Dam is one of the only inland waterways that has no closed season on Murray cod.