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Junee’s surrounding villages


Bethungra, Old Junee, Wantabadgery Eurongilly, and Illabo

Bethungra Dam and Reserve is listed in the ‘Directory of Important Wetlands in Australia’. The scenic public recreation area accommodates canoeing, sailing, picnics, swimming and fishing. Camping facilities, toilets, BBQ’s and bins. Access is via Bethungra Waterworks Road.

Originally constructed in 1895 as a water supply dam to service Junee, this dam is located in the north east sector of Junee Shire, just north of Ulandra Nature Reserve. It continued to be used as a public water supply until about 1906, when water quality problems led to its disuse.

The dam covers an area of 14.65 hectares and holds 600 megalitres of water. It is on Crown Land and is managed by Junee Shire Council. Much of the land surrounding the dam is privately owned, while the remainder is leased for agricultural purposes.

In 1993, the first formally identified blue green algae bloom was recorded in the dam. This led to its closure for recreational purposes. In 2000 a small outbreak of blue green algae was recorded in the Dam. Several fish perished in this event and once again all recreation activities were forced to cease. One possible theory for the blue green algae blooms in the dam is the likely run-off of excess phosphates and nitrates from pasture and crop fertilisation. These compounds, particularly phosphates, build up in the soil over a period of decades until they reach a critical point after which the soil can no longer retain them. They are then leached out in run-off, to watercourses and the dam.

The “Bethungra Reserve Plan of Management”, 1989 lists flora and fauna observed or expected to occur on Bethungra Reserve. 


Rail buffs will love Bethungra, one of the fascinating and historical villages just around the corner from Junee, NSW. A rail spiral – aptly named the Bethungra Spiral – was built on the Main South railway line by the NSWGR to ease the gradients when the line was duplicated in the 1940s. It is the only 360-degree spiral in Australia. Bethungra is also home to the historic Shirley B&B, the Old School T-House and Bethungra Dam...


Wantabadgery is a village community in the true sense of the term and provides a snapshot of life in regional NSW in days gone by. Discover the stunning landscapes, including the Lumeah River and Sandy Beach Reserve, which is superb to explore in a 4WD and is a great camping spot with an excellent fishing and swimming reputation...


If you’re into Country and Western, no doubt you’re heading to Illabo for the annual Country Music Stampede in April! When it’s not a Mecca for cowboy booted tourists, you can head to Illabo and get to know ALL the locals. With around 200 people living here, you may meet every one of them at the Illabo Hotel ‘n’ General Store. Enjoy a walk around this charming little town and be sure to stop off for a pub lunch.

Monte Cristo

Monte Cristo was built in 1884 and the historic homestead has been fully restored in High Victorian Style. The historic (and some say most haunted house in Australia) late Victorian mansion Monte Cristo was the centre of society for the...


This is a little town that’s given a lot - around a tenth of the Eurongilly population served for our country in World War II. The town’s main historical building is the old firehouse, proving again that Eurongilly is a town made up of brave men.

Old Junee Town

The father of the current town of Junee, Old Junee took the name when Junee moved to its current location in 1881. Old Junee was established in 1862 and, like Junee itself, is a proud railway town. Photographers will love the rustic, picturesque photo opportunities, including gently swaying lavender fields and rustic rural scenes… well worth stopping off!

Get sidetracked in Junee…and discover what’s just around the corner