Our History

Brewarrina lies at that point on the Darling River system, where it is generally accepted that the Barwon River ends and the Darling commences. Early records of Brewarrina give details of tremendous wool clips from its surrounding sheep stations. Boorooma Station at one time employed 117 shearers to shear its flock of 300,000 sheep. Cobb & Co. also played a prominent part in the development of this district. In 1874 a service was running between Brewarrina and Enngonia and by 1896 a weekly service was running between Brewarrina and Girilambone.

The meaning of the word "Brewarrina" is obscure, although historians favour any of the following... acacia clumps; a native standing; a place where wild gooseberry grows or fishing. The latter meaning is preferred because of the large native fisheries constructed in the river, immediately downstream of the town's weir. These fisheries, which are still standing are estimated to be over 40,000 years old.

This small but progressive town is 808km by road from Sydney and is situated on the southern bank of what may be termed, the Barwon/ Darling River. The township, with a population of 1200 is well laid out with wide, tree-lined streets. It is 119m above sea level and the most direct route from Sydney is via the Mitchell Highway to Coolabah, hence to Gongolgon and on to Brewarrina.

The whole of this route is sealed. For those wishing to "go boating", the magnificent body of water impounded by the Brewarrina Weir, just above the fisheries, is an ideal setting. The weir is 168m wide and has proved a great asset to the expanding irrigation activities along the river. Many people come to Brewarrina for the excellent fishing available in the Barwon/ Darling River. Catches of cod, yellow-belly, catfish and bream are able to be made during most times of the year. A boat-launching ramp is available for use by fishermen or water-ski enthusiasts just upstream of the Barwon River bridge. Fishermen are reminded of the need to seek permission before entering private property and of the need to purchase a fishing licence before fishing in inland waters. Fishing licences may be obtained from the Newsagency, Bathurst Street, Brewarrina. The district around Brewarrina relies principally on the pastoral industry and due to the low average annual rainfall... 381mm properties are necessarily large and holdings of 20,000 acres are common. Whilst Brewarrina's major attraction to visitors is undoubtedly fishing, an equally interesting attraction is Brewarrina's close association with the early aborigines, evidenced by the numerous aboriginal sites. Visitors desirous of inspecting some of them are requested to contact Visitors Information Centre, Brewarrina.