Taree, 320 km north of Sydney, is the main service centre for the Manning River Valley, a rich dairying and timber region. There is a heritage walk that encompasses the historical buildings around the centre of the town, including St Paul's Church, the town's oldest building.
Fotheringham Park is home to the town's Herb and Sculpture Garden. A unique community project, this includes sculptured posts and a herb garden, free for anyone who needs a little extra flavour in their cooking. One of the best ways to experience the Manning River is to take a river cruise, which depart from the wharves near Fotheringham Park.
The Manning Regional Art Gallery has an excellent collection focussing on Australian art from the 1930s to today. There is also a changing program of exhibitions featuring local and other artists.
At the northern gateway to the town, you will find the Big Oyster. Another in Australia's obsession with "Big Things", the Big Oyster is a restaurant and curiosity bivalve shop, as well as a tribute to the vast oyster beds of the Manning River.
Visit the nearby old river towns of Croki and Tinonee for a historic view of the region. Wingham
is well worth a visit, with its historic buildings surrounding the village green. Wingham Brush is a delightful remnant of sub-tropical rainforest and is home to a noisy colony of flying foxes.
Kiwarrak State Forest lies 5 km south of Taree. There is a 16km drive which includes Breakneck Lookout and a delightful picnic area known as The Pines. North of Taree, Coopernook Forest Drive is a scenic road with lookouts, waterfalls and picnic areas.
With 150km of waterways, the Manning River is a popular spot for water sports including sailing, waterskiing and fishing. On the coast, Old Bar lies at the southern entrance to the Manning River, while nearby Saltwater has excellent surfing and a lagoon which is popular with families. Further north, Manning Point, at the main estuary of the Manning River, has good surfing and swimming.
About 25km northeast of Taree is Crowdy Bay National Park which provides good opportunities for swimming and surf fishing and is a particularly popular area with birdwatchers.
Easter Aquatic Festival (Easter), Non-Conventional Homes Tour and Environ Fair (June long weekend)
Things to do:
In the area:
- Visitor Information Centre - Pacific Highway north of the town centre
- Fotheringham Park - Herb and Sculpture Garden
- Manning Regional Art Gallery - excellent collection of Australian art
- Big Oyster - love it or hate it, you can't miss it!
- Wingham - historic buildings, village green, Wingham Brush
- Scenic drives - Kiwarrak State Forest drive and Coopernook Forest Drive
- Coastal towns - Old Bar, Saltwater and Manning Point
- Crowdy Bay National Park - swimming, surf fishing and birdwatching