Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve in the Australian Alps, which straddle the NSW, Victoria and ACT borders, is full of surprises for visitors.
Just under 25 minutes’ drive from Abode Tuggeranong — or about 40km from Canberra’s centre — the reserve features spectacular exposed granite tors, foothill valleys and sheltered streams that are home to many native animals and plants.
You’ll spot wildlife including eastern grey kangaroos, echidnas, wallabies and emus in their natural habitat, and don’t forget to look up as you stroll through the eucalyptus forest to discover koalas in the leafy canopy. There’s also a sheltered enclosure where visitors can check out these iconic creatures up close and learn more about them during talks by rangers.
The Sanctuary at Tidbinbilla offers fabulous opportunities to experience a wetlands ecosystem surrounded by bushland and protected by a predator-proof fence, providing a safe refuge for many animals.
The monthly explorer program of ranger-guided activities is well worth investigating, with activities including koala walks, platypus talks and pelican feeding.
Tidbinbilla also offers booked activities such as water bugs, geo journey walks, cubby building, billy tea and damper experiences, plus the chance to learn about and have a go at throwing Aboriginal spears and boomerangs. If you want to go it alone, try the adventure obstacle course, a visit to the Historic Rock Valley Homestead or spend some time at the nature adventure playground which has a flying fox and other equipment the kids will love.
For families and friends, Tidbinbilla is an ideal location for a barbecue in designated areas, with plenty of parking, toilets and picnic tables.
Once you’ve got your energy levels up, set off on one of the 21 marked walking trails, ranging from 15-minute strolls to an eight-hour bush walk. Trails traverse the sanctuary wetlands, forested areas and cascading mountain streams through lyrebird country, or go high into the mountain ridges with spectacular views of the ACT. Take in the diverse vegetation — from woodlands and grasslands to sub-alpine snow gum and poa grassland — as you go.
Tidbinbilla also plays an important role in biodiversity conservation, with a range of research programs under way to help protect the flora and fauna of the area. A threatened species program focuses on the Northern Corroboree Frog, the Eastern Bettong and the Brush Tailed Rock Wallaby. You can see the corroboree frogs most days in the Tidbinbilla Visitor Centre, along with a number of other animals. It also has some lovely merchandise of these threatened species, with profits going towards their conservation.
For those who wish to immerse themselves fully in a nature experience, Tidbinbilla has accommodation on site at Nil Desperandum, a heritage-listed rammed-earth European homestead nestled in the mountains. The house has a wood stove and outside fire pit, rainwater tank, solar-powered lights and quality camp beds.
At the end of a long day exploring the natural wonders of the Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve, you’ll love retiring to your home away from home at Abode Tuggeranong. With studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom suites available to accommodate groups, families and everything in between, these spacious and stylishly appointed rooms feature fully equipped kitchen and laundry facilities so you can wash away the day and prepare yourself, and your gear, for the adventures to come. Book your stay at Abode Tuggeranong here.