Cobargo combines the skills and craft of a working village with a genuinely historic past, its streetscape featuring the many turn of the century buildings that make Cobargo such an attraction for visitors.
Cobargo suffered devastating losses in the black summer bushfires of January 2020 but the community bond and spirit continues to shine on and the locals are welcoming visitors back to this bustling village once again. The streets give up lots of surprises, with vintage stores and cool little eateries jostling for position with art galleries, craft workshops and of course the heritage buildings that the town is famous for.
Many of these buildings house craftspeople who not only sell a range of unique goods from woodcrafts and pottery to leather and art works, they can often be seen at their craft working in the way that people did when Cobargo was a young town.
This close-knit rural community, one that was a self-sufficient village in the days preceding the motor car, remains resourceful, hardworking and welcoming today even in the face of so much adversity.
Cobargo was “The Junction” as the township first began to develop in the late 1860’s at the junction of the Narira and Bredbatoura creeks, the surrounding landscape merging into wilderness areas that are today incorporated in the Wadbilliga National Park. Cobargo is an Aboriginal word which means ‘Grandfather’.
Where is Cobargo?
Situated on the Princes Highway north of Bega, Cobargo is only 15 minutes from Bermagui coastline, making it a great addition to a day trip.
Cobargo’s National Park
West of Cobargo is the Wadbilliga National Park. Wadbilliga National Park features remote and rugged wilderness that will leave you feeling like you’ve truly escaped into the great outdoors. It’s popular with 4WD enthusiasts and offers remote camping. Sedans can access the Wadbilliga Crossing Picnic Area via Wandella Road at Cobargo.
With steep gorges carved into dramatic ancient granite cliffs contrasting with wide, undulating plateaus from the high escarpment country down to the coastal plains.
Along the picturesque 20km drive is evidence of the early farms established by the pioneers of the district. The wilderness of the national park is in marked contrast to the cleared farmland to which it is adjacent.
Look for the cluster of gnomes. An illustrated field guide to the local wee folk has been prepared by local Naomi Lewis and has proven invaluable to spotters. It describes the gnome’s appearance and habitat along with their nature – are they malevolent or helpful?
Hundreds of international and local musicians converge of Cobargo for this annual three day folk festival. Along with great music, there are loads of activities for young and old with markets, camping, poetry and more.
There’s a great town walk to learn about the history and heritage of Cobargo (available from the Information Centre). A 25m heated swimming pool, squash courts, tennis, sports ground and regular pony club events are all on offer in Cobargo. There is a picnic area and park right in town near the bridge. Situated on the banks of the Narira River, it is a pleasant vantage point from which to watch the activity of this busy town.