Narrandera, an historic town straddling the junction of the Newell and Sturt highways on the Murrumbidgee River, has been declared an urban conservation area and its buildings, handsome street trees, parks and gardens are protected by a National Trust listing. The town’s fame, too, extends to the arts through a former parish priest, Father Patrick Hartigan, who, under the pen name of John O’Brien, wrote such timeless bush ballad treasures as Around the Boree Log, Said Hanrahan and Tangmalangaloo. The man and his poems are celebrated each March with the John O’Brien Bush Festival. Heritage walks and koala spotting in the Nature Reserve are other attractions. The standout buildings on the heritage walk include the court house and police station complex - parts of which date back to 1870 - the National Australia Bank (1884), the Federation post office and several well-matured hotels. Centrepiece of the Parkside Cottage Museum collection is an opera cloak made from the first bale of wool shipped to England by the Macarthur family.