Approximately an hour's drive from Griffith is the township of Narrandera in the beautiful Riverina region. Here, you'll get to explore the town's heritage, play the world's second largest guitar, marvel at a wrap-around mural and enjoy an artificial lake.
A number of memorials can be found around town including the Charles Sturt Memorial, Royal Doulton Memorial Fountain, Tiger Moth Memorial and Aerial Trunk Route Memorial.
In 1829, explorer Charles Sturt passed Narrandera on his journey along the Murrumbidgee River in search of an inland sea. A memorial now stands on Sturt Place just north of the river to commemorate this passing. Records show that Sturt was immensely enthusiastic about the area's 'fine country' and 'beautiful river'.
The Royal Doulton ceramic fountain in the Memorial Gardens at the corner of East Street and Victoria Avenue is one of only two such fountains known to be in existence in the world. It honours those in the district who served in World War I. And, in case you're wondering, the other fountain is located in Pakistan!
During World War II, an Elementary Flight Training School was established at Narrandera to train pilots, navigators, wireless operators and air gunners. Tiger Moth aircraft were flown in and, over five years of operation, almost 4,000 young men completed the course. This iconic aeroplane can also be seen on the town's water tower art.
Next to the Charles Sturt Memorial are remnants of the telecommunications trunk route linking Narrandera and other towns and cities in the second half of the 20th century. The network was recognised as one of the best at that time until overtaken by co-axial cable.
Measuring 5.8 metres long and 2 metres wide, The Big Playable Guitar is Australia's largest and the world's second largest guitar. It used to be the largest worldwide, but in 2000, one more than double its size was built in Texas. Regardless, Narrandera's guitar is still so big that two players are needed to actually play it. Of course, you're most welcome to have a go at plucking and strumming it all by yourself too.
You can find the guitar inside the visitor information centre on Cadell Street. Do note that this stringed musical instrument is not to be confused with The Big Golden Guitar in Tamworth and The Big Botanical Guitar in Barmera which are both not playable.
Water Tower Art
Water Tower Art
Narrandera's water tower sits on a high point in town and now has a mural wrapped around it. The artwork showcases significant icons in addition to local fauna such as the koala, Murray cod and Eastern Bearded Dragon lizard. Be sure to check it out when you're visiting.
Lastly, the artificial Lake Talbot is perfect for canoeing if you've brought your own boat and paddle with you. Else, you can enjoy a picnic at its well-maintained lookout while taking in the view. The lake is less than two kilometres from the town centre and can be accessed via Guriyan Road just off Ngurang Road.
noice - we recently did a 6 day road trip to/from Lightning Ridge - it feels good to be in the middle of nowhere, enjoying the silence and big sky 360-degree horizon - Milky Way at night if you're away from town lights.