The little town of Yenda, 16km east of Griffith in the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area in southern NSW, is a multicultural place where vineyards and rice paddies are becoming increasingly important to the local economy.
In fact, the vineyards around here supply something like 70 per cent of NSW wine grapes and virtually all those used to produce bulk wines. Other produce includes stone and citrus fruits, vegetables, and poultry.
Yenda is at the edge of the 8360ha Cocoparra National Park, a place of spectacular gorges, waterfalls, wonderful walks to lofty lookouts, and home to more than 150 species of birds.
At Easter each year, the Griffith Food and Wine Festival testifies to the diversity and quality of the local produce and Australia’s increasingly sophisticated and innovative preparation and presentation of food.
But Griffith has more to offer than mere sustenance. Take a stroll through Pioneer Park for a fascinating journey into the past. More than 40 historic buildings show the development of Griffith from the early 1900s when it laboured under the undistinguished name of Bagtown, because the irrigation canal workers used hessian supply bags to build their ‘humpies'.