Out and About
At Bluegum, you will love the fact that you are away from it all but still so close to everything.
Thirlmere offers most of the necessary services:
- Post Office
- Hotel and bottle shop
The larger nearby towns of Picton and Tahmoor are only a short drive away and give access to major facilities:
- Medical centres
- Dental care
- Major banks and credit unions
- Railway stations
- Major supermarkets
- Professional services
- Bowral and Camden Hospitals are only a half an hour drive away
Travel a little further afield to enjoy all that New South Wales has to offer:
- Camden (20 minute drive)
- Bowral (30 minute drive)
- Campbelltown (30 minute drive)
- Sydney (60 minute drive)
Public transport is also readily available, although you won’t have to travel far as you will be spoilt for choice with plenty of things to see and do in the local area.
Rail Transport Museum, Thirlmere
One of Thirlmere’s great attractions is the New South Wales Rail Transport Museum. The oldest and largest such museum in the country it features 60 locomotives (steam, diesel and electric) and 100 carriages, including a No 18 built in 1864 and a huge 260-tonne Garratt No 6040 built in 1956. The museum offers picnic and BBQ facilities as well as excursion rides hauled by steam and diesel locomotives.
The Festival of Steam is held on the first Sunday in March, drawing crowds of over 15,000 as tourists flock for the State’s biggest gathering of main line steam locomotives as well as a fair and markets.
Thirlmere Lakes National Park
At Thirlmere Lakes National Park you will enjoy the tranquillity of five interconnected freshwater lakes abundant in waterbirds. As well as providing an important ecosystem, this Blue Mountains Heritage Area is a popular bushwalking and picnic spot for locals and day-trippers from Sydney, with BBQ and picnic facilities on the shorelines of two lakes. The lakes themselves are also a popular for swimming, kayaking and canoeing.
Wirrimbirra Sanctuary, Bargo
Wirrimbirra Sanctuary is a small 95 hectare property reserved under the authority of the National Trust of Australia. The Sanctuary was gifted by Thistle Harris who opened the park in the 1960s as a tribute to her late husband. Open to the public, the sanctuary seeks to promote native Australian environmental and wildlife issues, and preserve “Bargo Brush” plants and animals including the lyrebird, koala, wombat and dingo.
Mushroom Tunnel, Picton
Mushroom Tunnel was built in 1867 and is one of the earliest pre-federation railway tunnels in New South Wales. During the war years, the tunnel served as a mushroom farm and ammunition storage facility. Local folk tales have made the now-empty tunnel popular with ghost hunters and the “haunted” tunnel has since been featured on television.
Antill Park Country Golf Club, Wollondilly Shire
Antill Park boasts the largest 18-hole golf course in the Wollondilly Shire. The historic Golf Clubhouse was built in 1863 by John Macquarie Antill.
Markets, Thirlmere and Picton
The Picton Country Markets are held on the fourth Saturday of each month in Menangle Rd. The Picton Show is held in October each year.
Thirlmere Creative Traders Markets are held on the third Sunday of each month outside the Rail Transport Museum. The Creative Traders Markets showcase the creative talents of the Wollondilly Shire and provide an opportunity for locals and visitors to purchase handmade artworks, jewellery, quilted items, glass art and woodwork, as well as fresh local produce direct from the farmer.
Film and Television
Due to the easy access to working steam trains, Thirlmere has been the scene for a number of television commercials and television shows. Perhaps the most popular television series filmed at Thirlmere was the Channel Seven series Always Greener (2001 to 2003). The series prominently featured the main street of Thirlmere, including many shots of the pub, local stores, railway station, and surrounding countryside.
Surrounding tourist attractions including the Rail Transport Museum, Mushroom Tunnel have been featured on Australian travel programs.