Located on the southern boundary of the Southern Highlands where the manicured paddocks, hedges and gardens give way to the rugged beauty of Morton National Park renowned for its deep gorges, gullies and wide array of flora and fauna. The area was known to the original aboriginal inhabitants as a ‘place of deep gullies’, and the interpretation of this word by the European settlers was Bundanoon. The village is only a few minutes from easily accessible lookouts where one can view the striking views along the spectacular sandstone escarpments.
Bundanoon could have been called South Lambton, Barren Grounds or even Jumping Rock, all local names from as early as 1838, but when the railway route to Goulburn was taken through ‘Jordan’s Crossing’ in 1868, the name stuck. Until then, the area had been mostly farms and orchards.
Development followed the construction of the railway line, as the area had supplies of coal, freestone and timber. Over the years there were two coal mines established in the Gullies and at least three timber mills sourcing timber from the Gullies also. The sandstone quarry between Bundanoon and Penrose supplied sandstone for many prominent buildings in NSW and is still operating.
After subdivision of some larger farming properties the resultant village was officially named Bundanoon in 1881 in honour of the original indigenous inhabitants. From the late 1880’s guesthouses sprung up in the village. The Victorian passion for picnics ,bushwalking and communing with nature in the natural scenic beauty of Bundanoon created a booming tourism industry.
These days, Bundanoon is a lovely and rapidly growing community that has managed not only to retain its village atmosphere, but improve upon it through the enthusiastic involvement of its residents. Several of the old guesthouses have been restored and welcome guests once more. The pleasures of the great outdoors continue to draw visitors, just as they did over a century ago.