If you are a cricket lover, then you would have definitely heard of Bowral. The famous Australian cricketer Don Bradman grew up and started his cricket journey in Bowral. Let me be honest, I am not a cricket fan so even though I knew about Bradman, I did not know Bowral. I came to know about Bowral through a friend who traveled to Bowral just to visit the Bradman’s museum.
Sir Donald George Bradman was an Australian international cricketer and has been acknowledged as the greatest batsman of all time.
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Where is Bowral?
Bowral is the largest town in the Southern Highlands region of New South Wales (NSW) state. Bowral’s history goes back to about 200 years. The land was home to the Dharawal aboriginal tribe. Bowral was formerly spelt as Bowrall, which may have been derived from an aboriginal word meaning “high and large”.
For other things to do in Southern Highlands, read my post, Road trip to Southern Highlands.
The best time to visit Bowral is during the autumn (between March and May) and spring seasons (between September and November). I visited Bowral during the autumn season only for a day but one needs at least 2 days to see everything in Bowral.
For a great place to see the autumn colours in NSW, read my post One day trip to Mount Wilson.
How to get to Bowral?
Bowral has a train station. There are frequent trains throughout the day between Central train station in Sydney and Bowral train station. The cost of a one way train ticket can be as cheap as AUD 16 per person one way.
- More details can be found on the Transport for NSW website.
- The train journey one way is about 1 hour 30 minutes.
Bowral is just around 120 kilometres from Sydney Central Business District (CBD) and takes only 1 hour 30 minutes to drive.
- The route has toll roads.
Things to do in Bowral
The Bradman walk is just 1.7 kilometres and is a self guided walk of all the Bradman’s related landmarks and historic sites. The walk only takes about 45 minutes and is an easy grade.
- Starting and finishing point: Bradman’s museum.
- Total distance: 1.7 kilometres.
- Time taken: 45 minutes.
- Grade: Easy.
- Path: Bradman museum – Commemorative Gallery – St Simon & St Judes Anglican Church – Bowral Public School – The Empire Cinema – 279 Bong Bong Street – Corbett Gardens – 52 Shephard Street – 20 Glebe Street – Bradman Oval – Bradman museum.
Bradman’s museum & International cricket hall of fame
Opened in the year 1989, the Bradman’s museum and International cricket hall of fame is dedicated to the sport cricket. The museum is dedicated to Don Bradman and it honours Bradman’s vision for cricket to flourish and spread its wings. It is an exhibition and museum showcasing not only Bradman’s contribution but also to talk about the history, players and the culture of cricket.
- The entry ticket cost AUD 25 per person. One would need at least an hour to 1.5 hours to see and spend time at the museum.
- The facility also has a cafe and a souvenir shop.
Bradman’s childhood home
Don Bradman lived at 52, Shepherd Street, Bowral between the age of three and fifteen. This is the home where he developed his batting skills. I am not sure if visitors can go inside the house but according to the article on Hindu Business Line, visitors could go inside. I did not go in as I thought it was a house and it was inappropriate to go inside.
The Corbett Gardens is famous for the tulips during the spring season (between September and November). The Tulip Time festival is hosted in Bowral. I believe that during the festival there are around 75000 tulips on display.
- There is no entrance ticket to get into the gardens.
Cherry tree walk
The Cherry tree walk is a must in the month of October where one can see the trees in full bloom. It is a 5 kilometres walk where one can stroll or have a picnic among the trees. The path has a river with ducks and lots of trees.
- There is no entrance ticket to get into the park.
For the history of Cherry tree walk, read the article from Southern Highlands news.
Mary Poppins Statue
The statue of Mary Poppins is located at the Glebe Park, right behind the Bradman’s museum. The statue is to commemorate the author Pamela L. Travers, who created the Mary Poppins character. Pamela L. Travers spent some of her childhood in Bowral.
Did you know that Mary Poppins statue disappeared for sometime? There was a note stating “Mary Poppins is safe in our custody. She is taking a jolly holiday. Yours faithfully, The Neleus Guild”. When the statue returned, there was another letter that clarified that The Neleus Guild were a secret society.Article from Camden Advertiser
Safety for solo female travelers
I traveled alone to Bowral and it is very safe for solo female travelers. I did not have any concern or issue while traveling or walking around the town. However, like any other place, ensure to be cautious and know your surroundings, especially at nights.
I loved Bowral. Keeping the history about Don Bradman aside, I still loved this cute little town. It has so much character and the town looks extremely beautiful, especially around autumn. I would recommend this town as a great weekend getaway from Sydney.
Do you think I have missed anything that are a must visit places in Bowral? Or do you have any suggestions for eating places? Let me know in the comments.
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