Canberra Day Trips: 8 great reasons to love Jugiong

Canberra Day Trips 10 June 2018

Lunch is served at the Sir George Tavern. All images supplied by author.

The tiny village of Jugiong is just a short detour off the busy Hume Highway but it feels like it’s a million miles from anywhere. Nestled on the banks of the Murrumbidgee River, the town is a green and welcoming oasis away from the busy highway traffic and noise. It’s a beautiful spot to while away some time at fabulous local businesses in the main street, and a refreshing stop for travellers during a long drive down the Hume. Do yourself a favour and make Jugiong your next day trip destination. Either way, you won’t regret pulling in!

Why you’ll love it

  1. Although it is home to just a few hundred people, Jugiong has a surprising number of places to visit. There are some lovely historic buildings for history buffs to investigate, especially the Church of England and the St John the Evangelist Catholic Church. Just outside town, there is a monument to Sergeant Edward Parry, who was shot by members of bushranger Ben Hall’s Gang.
  2. Jugiong Writers Festival is a unique annual event that promises reading, writing and really good fun, so if you’re into all things literary, the next one is in March 2019.
  3. If you’re travelling through Jugiong on your way to somewhere else, there’s a quiet, grassy rest area (with a big plus of well-maintained public restrooms), where you can take a peaceful break and have a breather from the traffic in a tranquil location.

And of course, there are several places to grab a meal and relax and unwind. Here’s our pick of what’s on offer.

  1. Long Track Pantry is a stylish, warm and welcoming café serving excellent food, outstanding coffee and offering delicious homemade jams, chutneys and sauces. It’s open every day except Tuesday and has been described as a “benchmark of rural excellence with coffee that matches anything available in the capital cities and food which is exciting and creative.” (Aussie Towns). You’ll find it in the beautifully restored general store. Drop in for home-style breakfast and lunch – you’ll get a warm welcome and a seriously delicious range of sandwiches and salads and smooth coffee to choose from.
  2. The building that houses the Sir George Tavern dates back to 1845. It has sandstone walls that are 500 cm thick and a real old-world charm. The walls abound with historic photographs, and there are lounges and a large fireplace for the winter months. These days it combines a modern, elegant design, high-end dining, (an onsite bakery) matched by professional, friendly service. It’s a great place to kick back with a cold one or two if you’re not driving.
  3. The Jugiong Wine Cellar showcases some excellent wines from the surrounding wine regions of Hilltops, Tumbarumba, Canberra and Gundagai. The cellar door offers travellers a taste of the best wines produced throughout southern NSW. Regional and gourmet produce such as jams, sauces and oils are also available.
  4. The Yard Studio is filled with a variety of artwork including paintings and photographs and a fantastic range of floristry. You can pick up some great gifts for loved ones here, such as bags, creams, notebooks, furniture, and homewares.
  5. The Roadhouse on Riverside serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and excellent coffee. You’ll find fresh food served quickly, and friendly service.

Outdoor dining area at Sir George Tavern.

Getting there

From Canberra, take the Barton towards Yass until its intersection with the Hume Highway. From there, the Hume Highway will get you almost to Jugiong, and the turn-off to the town is signposted about 60km from Yass.

Key details

  • Duration: Jugiong is around 90 minutes from Canberra, a couple of minutes off the Hume Highway
  • Distance from Canberra: 120km one way
  • Recommended for: weary travellers looking for a quiet haven to rest and refresh; day trippers keen on regional food and produce; and those interested in history and exploring a tranquil riverside setting.
  • More information via the Canberra Region website.

Do you have a favourite spot to take a break in Jugiong?

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