Orange - Australia's Colour City

Orange and its fertile surrounds produce delicious local produce, including beef, lamb, fruits and wine with€“ much of it available from regular farmers’ markets in the Orange area. The city is also rich in local history, has a flourishing cultural scene, features beautiful parks and gardens, and is surrounded by natural attractions.

Today

 

Orange and its surrounding areas are enjoying a growing reputation for rare and exotic produce thanks to the cool climate and rich volcanic soils. The produce ranges from stone fruits and sheep’s cheeses to fungi and grapes – much of it available from regular farmers markets in the Orange area.

More than 50 cool-climate wineries operate in the area that has now become one of the most exciting wine regions in Australia.

The city is also rich in local history, has a flourishing cultural scene, features beautiful parks and gardens, and is surrounded by natural attractions.

The vibrant autumn foliage makes Orange a very popular destination in the cooler seasons, and it’s no coincidence that autumn is when Orange F.O.O.D. Week (Food Of Orange District) swings into action.

Orange was once called Blackman’s Creek, but was renamed in honour of Prince William of Orange. Orange is well-known as the birthplace of one of Australia’s most famous bush poets, Banjo Patterson.

Not far from Orange is Blayney wind farm, best viewed from Carcoar Dam, which is also popular for sailing, windsurfing, swimming and fishing.

In historic Millthorpe, you can take a self-guided walking tour, enjoy country drives or admire beautiful gardens in season. Check out the old-world charm and heritage buildings of nearby Molong.

Yesterday

The city has grown from its rich mining past when in 1851 William Tom and John Lister found the first payable gold in Australia at Ophir. In the same year gold was found at Lucknow and these rich mines were worked for many years afterwards, which brought great wealth to the area.

The economic influence of the gold rush attracted a wide range of people and business to the district. One such business was the legendary coaching firm of Cobb & Co which operated gold escorts and Royal Mail Services across the region.

Despite the impact gold had on the colony, it was the fertile land in the area that led Orange to further develop.

Early farmers found that wheat and barley grew well with a reliable rainfall. By the 1860s the Orange area was well known as the granary of the west with several flour mills established.

Orange is also well known as the birthplace of Australia’s famous poet Banjo Paterson who was born in John Templer’s home on 17 February 1864. A monument and statue are located at the site of his birthplace, Banjo Paterson Park, on the Ophir Road.

Orange was proclaimed a Municipality on January 9 1860, and the first meeting of the Council was held at the Court House, with John Peisley officiating as Chairman. Orange began to develop as an important regional centre.

Bearing towards the 20th Century the town saw building activity increase to cater for the ever-expanding population of Orange. New housing continued to be built, subdivisions established and motorcars become an everyday appearance in Orange.

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Key Highlights

  • Ophir - site of the first 'payable' gold find in Australia
  • Wentworth Gold Mine site in Lucknow
  • Orange F.O.O.D. (Food Of Orange District) week in Autumn
  • Historic Millthorpe with fine heritage buildings and streetscapes

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