26 August 2017

Canberra Day Trips: Numeralla

| Canberra Day Trips
Start the conversation

For a small village, Numeralla has a big reputation when it comes to its Folk Festival, held in January each year. It’s a three-day extravaganza of music, poetry, dance, markets and more. But there’s also plenty to see in Numeralla at any time of year.

Numeralla was established in 1885 and used to be a hive of activity. It sits on the banks of the Numeralla River, once a site for gold mining. If you look closely, gold mining relics can be seen on the Badja River nearby.

These days, the sleepy village is a favourite spot for anglers. The camping and picnic area is a popular place for those wanting to get away from it all, and it’s the base for an easy return walk to Tuross Falls at Wadbilliga National Park to the east.

Once a year, Numeralla comes alive when the Folk Festival heads to town. Known as a little festival with a big heart, this homespun event has been going strong for over 40 years.


Why you’ll love it

As you drive into Numeralla, you’ll notice some outstanding vistas and an untouched bush environment. Although there are no services within the village, with the closest facilities being 25 km away in Cooma, there’s plenty to do and see.

The Numeralla Folk Festival, held over the Australia Day long weekend, has been running for over 40 years. It’s the last free folk festival in Australia, and this extends not only to the entertainment but camping as well. There are no tickets, but plenty of opportunities for dips in the river, yarns around the campfire and convivial conversation.


Highlights of the festival include bush dances, markets showcasing local produce, a program just for kids, dance and music workshops and of course the concerts. If you’re looking to soak up a traditional folk festival atmosphere, then this is the place for you.

If you’re a camper, the Badja camping ground, on the Badja River near where it joins the Numeralla River has basic facilities including a picnic area, campsites, barbecues and toilets. There are plenty of established trees for shade, and the river attracts a range of bird life.

The campground is well maintained and a pleasant spot for an overnight stop, especially if you enjoy canoeing, kayaking or fishing, or as a base for exploring the region.

When to go

Numeralla is host to many annual events, and it’s worth timing your visit to coincide with some of these. Highlights include:

  • The folk festival every January
  • The Australia Day breakfast and Christmas and New Year barbecues
  • The Mud Marlin fishing competition – which aims not only to bring people together but determine the extent of carp in the local rivers

In autumn, the deciduous trees put on a colourful show in Numeralla and the surrounding region.

Spring and summer, when the snow melts into the alpine streams, are perfect times to visit if you’re keen to do some fishing in the clear, abundant water.


Key details

  • Duration: the drive from Canberra takes about an hour and a half
  • Distance from Canberra: around 130 km
  • Recommended for: nature lovers, fans of folk music, and fishing aficionados
  • More information: Go to the Visit Cooma or Numeralla and District activities websites

Do you know of other hidden gems tucked away in the Canberra region that we should explore? Let us know in the comments.

Header image from Domain.

Start the conversation

Daily Digest

Want the best Canberra news delivered daily? Every day we package the most popular Riotact stories and send them straight to your inbox. Sign-up now for trusted local news that will never be behind a paywall.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.