Hartley Historic Site NPWS

Hartley Accommodation


Open Hours: 10am-1pm, 1.30pm to 4pm. Tuesday to Sunday (closed Monday)

Step into an open-air museum at Hartley Historic Site and trace the changing fortunes of Australia’s early inland settlement.


An intact historical village dating back to 1837, it evolved when Hartley Courthouse was built to keep an eye on the convicts paving the road westwards over the mountains. The town boomed when gold fever swept through in the 1850s and Hartley became a staging post on the way to the Bathurst goldfields; however by 1877 it was bust, having been entirely bypassed by the new railway. It wasn’t until the advent of motor cars in the early 20th century that Hartley saw a resurgence, becoming a fashionable stop for tourists on their way to Jenolan Caves.

Today the village is a treasure trail that can be explored on foot with a self-guided tour. Inside the courthouse an audio-visual interpretation recounts the story of Hartley’s history, while convict graffiti on the walls of the holding cells conveys the humour, anxiety and hope of those awaiting their fate in the courtroom next door.      

The beautifully preserved St Bernard’s Church reveals a surprising French influence amid what was an early Irish colony and is now available to hire for Catholic ceremonies.   

Named after the towering Kew-Y-Ahn Tor believed to be a meeting place for Aboriginal people in former times, the Kew-Y-Ahn Gallery showcases an ever-changing exhibition of works for sale by contemporary Aboriginal artists from the Central West of NSW. 

Visitors can take a shady stroll along the River Lett to try and spot a platypus or wander along the Sculpture Walk to Talisman Gallery, where onsite artisan Ron Fitzpatrick crafts metal art and silver jewellery by hand.

Hartley Visitor Centre is housed in the colonial Farmers Inn, where visitors can purchase tickets for self-guided tours, view the Kew-Y-Ahn Gallery, and buy gifts, drinks and ice cream.        

For a full-immersion experience, Hartley Historic Site offers heritage accommodation at St Bernard’s Presbytery and Old Trahlee cottage, as well as unique venue hire options that include the elegant Greek Revival courthouse.

Feel free to call or email the friendly Hartley Visitor Centre staff to find out more.


Map & Directions

45 Old Great Western Hwy, Hartley, NSW, 2790, Australia

Phone 02 6355 2117


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