The beautifully penned 'The Man from Snowy River' by Banjo Paterson is an immortal Australian poem and in it there is the line, "There was Harrison, who made his pile when Pardon won the cup". While many assume it was the famous Melbourne Cup being referred to, it is actually the Presidents Cup at held at Menindee.

There is a story to tell and something to learn in most outback towns, and Menindee on the Darling River is no exception.

Accommodation Partner - Nelia Gaari Station

North of Menindee

Nelia Gaari Station

If you are looking for a quite convenient spot on the Darling River to park your caravan/campervan or four wheel drive for overnight or as long as you like, call in and check out our great camp sites.

Our camp sites have shared toilet and shower facilities. Relax and experience the quiet and restful solitude of the Darling River.

Accommodation Partner - Bindara Station

South of Menindee

bindara station menindee

Historic Bindara Station is located on the West side of the Darling, south of Kinchega National Park. The Station is ideally situated between Pooncarie & Menindee and also a convenient stop off between Mungo & Kinchega National Parks.

Grab a mudmap to search & find points of interest. Go birdwatching, fishing or walk our river tracks and get up close to the wildlife, or just sit & relax at the campfire, watch the Darling flow by.

Stepped in legend and history, Menindee and the surrounding area is of great indigenous significance and European pastoral history. The area is known to the Barkindji people as 'Minandichee' and it is believed this is how the name originated.

The explorer Major Thomas Mitchell followed the Bogan and Darling Rivers down to this area in 1835 and came across the naturally formed lakes which he named 'Laidley's Chain of Ponds' , the Barkindji people referred to these as 'Wontanella' meaning 'Many Waters'.

A decade later, explorer Charles Sturt travelled up the Darling River from Wentworth through Menindee on his expedition to find the fabled inland sea.

  • menindee-lakes-2018-09
  • filling-lake-menindee-2010-14
  • menindee-lakes-2018-10
  • lake-pamamaroo-menindee-lakes-01
  • filling-lake-menindee-2010-15
  • menindee-lakes-2018-11
  • filling-lake-menindee-2010-13
  • menindee-sign-01
  • menindee-lakes-2018-04
  • menindee-lakes-2018-08
  • menindee-lakes-2018-07
  • copi-hollow-sunset-03
  • menindee-lakes-2018-06
  • filling-lake-menindee-2010-12
  • main-weir---menindee-lakes-16
  • menindee-lakes-2018-05

With the coming of the pastoralist and the opening up of the outback meant a violent time of conflict with the Barkindji who were subsequently decimated by European disease, driven from their traditional lands and forced into government missions.

This era saw two horrific massacres of the traditional owners; one via poisoning of leasehold stipulated provisions for the Barkindji people with arsenic by leaseholders and the straight-out slaughter of a tribe on the banks of Boolaboolka Lake.

In 1852, Tom Pain and his family arrived in Menindee and opened up the Menindee Hotel in 1953 and with this and the ability to supply provisions, the town established itself as Darling River Port in light of Captain Francis Cadell, accredited with opening up the Darling, establishing a store next to the Hotel in 1856.

Australia's most famous explorers Burke and Wills passed through Menindee for their Melbourne to the Gulf of Carpentaria expedition. The expedition arrived at Menindee on October 14 1860, and made camp at Kinchenga Station after crossing the Darling River. A depot camp for the expedition was established at the Pamamaroo Creek (a sign and cairn mark the site of the camp). Upon their departure, Burke and Wills carved an arrow in the door post of the hotel to indicate the expedition's direction.

River boat trade continued to develop the area and plans for a weir to control the flow of the river and level of the lakes to ensure river traded were shelved in the 1890's and by the time the rail-head reached the area in the 1920's the future of the river as a transport route were doomed.

The idea to control the flow of the river came to fruition in 1949 and completed in 1960 allowing for some retention of water in the naturally formed lakes to maintain some continuity for water supply and irrigation.

The Menindee Lakes originally comprised 9 natural ephemeral lakes covering an area of 453 km2 As a result of the weir, there are 4 major lakes Wetherell (including Lake Tandure), Pamamaroo (connected by a small lake called Copi Hollow), Menindee, and Cawndilla.

For the visitor, there is great fishing on the lakes, the magnificent Kinchega National Park, bird watching on the lakes, Lake Pamamaroo and Main Weir, Copi Hollow, Menindee War Memorials, the 1872 wreck of the paddle-steamer 'Providence', and the self-guided heritage walk around Menindee.

Menindee and the Menindee Lakes, right on the Darling River Run, is one of the best Darling River experiences as it is only 1 hrs drive from Broken Hill (sealed road) and is located on the eastern boundary of Kinchega National Park.

Menindee See & Do:

  • Kinchega National Park
  • Copi Hollow
  • Lake Pamamaroo
  • Main Wier
  • Interpretive walking trail

Getting to Menindee:

By Car:

  • From Brisbane: 1,600km
  • From Sydney: 1,150km
  • From Melbourne: 840km
  • From Adelaide: 565km

Menindee Visitor Information:

Menindee Website

Telephone: 08 8080 3560

Our Destination Partners

Our Accommodation Partners

Our Attractions Partners

Towns - Central Darling

  • Broken Hill

    With a BIG history, wonderful attractions, and unique experiences, Broken Hill is a true icon of Outback NSW. Under a big Azure sky, the Australian Outback is known for its remarkable colours and...

    Read More ...

  • Louth

    Famous Australian poet Henry Lawson lived and worked for a period in and around Louth and referred to it as, 'a place that loved a drink, a party and a punt.' Lawson's addage perfectly summed up...

    Read More ...

  • Pooncarie

    The famous explorers Bourke and Wills reached the Darling River near Pooncarie at nearby Tarcoola Station and made camp at what is now Bilbarka Park in September 1860 on the way to their ill-fated...

    Read More ...

  • Tilpa

    "Tis said the land out west is grand, do not care who says it", ('The Paroo River' 1893). Mr Lawson certainly knew how to eloquently sum up the outback and those that venture down the Darling River...

    Read More ...

  • Towns

    Darling River Towns Country hospitality and friendliness is something that maybe missing in our larger cities but it is certainly alive and well in the Outback. There is nothing like visiting...

    Read More ...

  • White Cliffs

    Like silence? Tired of the bright lights and noises of the city and want a really quite night's sleep under a million brilliant stars? White Cliffs has that for a truly restful night and plenty to...

    Read More ...

  • Wilcannia

    Wilcannia, on the Barrier Highway between Cobar and Broken Hill, is largely undisturbed port on the Darling River. Cross the bridge driving from Sydney to Broken Hill and turn either to your right...

    Read More ...

National Parks - Central Darling

  • Kinchega National Park

    Located in the central Darling about 1 hour south east of Broken Hill near the Darling River town Menindee, Kinchega National Park provides wonder access to the Darling River for river camping and...

    Read More ...

  • Mungo National Park

    In theory it is nothing more than the remnants of an ancient lake (completely dry and with ancient sand dunes running 20+ km along one side) in the middle of the New South Wales outback. In reality...

    Read More ...

  • Paroo-Darling National Park

    One of the newer National Parks of Outback NSW, Paroo-Darling is a vast area covering the Paroo River and central Darling region near Wilcannia. Split into two, the northern section of located east...

    Read More ...

Side Trips - Central Darling

  • Bourke, NSW - Back O' Bourke

    One of the great things about travel is the 'shared experience' and there is no better example than sitting down during our much-loved happy hour to share our experiences of where we have been and...

    Read More ...

  • Broken Hill Loop

    Taking in Wentworth, Broken Hill, Menindee (Kinchega National Park and the Menindee lakes), Pooncarie and Mungo National Park as a sidetrack, this loop has it all and allows you to visit Broken Hill and...

    Read More ...

  • Corner Country

    Corner Country Outback Adventure The largest side track (loop) off the Darling River Run takes in the western-most part of outback New South Wales, the Corner Country.  The Corner Country is the area...

    Read More ...

  • Lake Mungo Experience

    If you are to see one place in the NSW Outback it would have to be Mungo National Park and its spectacular Lunette and Walls of China. In theory it is nothing more than the remnants of an ancient...

    Read More ...

  • Lightning Ridge Loop

    This wonderful side-trip from the Darking River Run will take you to the iconically (and nicely eccentric) Australian Opal mining town of Lightning Ridge. Whether you are looking for the famous...

    Read More ...

  • Perry Hills

    Just 10kms from Wentworth, The Perry Sand hills are an amazing site especially at sunrise and sunset. Throughout the day, the colours of the dunes change and wonderful shadows and patterns form as...

    Read More ...