Parkes & Region

From the heights of Goobang National Park, to the plains of wheat and country villages, Parkes Shire boasts many sights to see – some well known and others waiting to be discovered.

Parkes Elvis Festival


The Festival is held annually in the second week of January. The five-day Festival program features a dazzling array of more than 150 individual events. Highlights include the Feature Concerts, the ever popular Elvis Gospel Service, the iconic Street Parade, the sashing of Miss Priscilla, the Renewal of Vows Ceremony and much more.
Cooke Park comes alive from Thursday to Sunday with markets and non-stop entertainment on the main stage, including Elvis tribute artists and competitions that the whole family can enjoy.

Visit for more information.

Tune into the Universe


Visit the CSIRO Parkes Radio Telescope, star of the movie ‘The Dish,’ (2000), it is one of Australia’s most prominent landmarks and a must-see attraction on every driving holiday through inland New South Wales.

The 64 metre wide dish stands impressively over surrounding farmlands – a sophisticated piece of scientific equipment ironically in the middle of sheep paddocks! Located 20km north of Parkes and just a short 5km detour off the Newell Highway.

Built virtually in the shadow of The Dish, the Visitor Discovery Centre is where visitors can explore the world of astronomy and discover the role The Dish plays in ‘listening to the stars’.

The Centre features many displays and hands on exhibits and a 3D theatre featuring programs on space and astronomy. The Dish Shop features a range of astronomy and space science books, DVDs, science toys and souvenirs. Whilst entry to the Visitor Discovery Centre is free there is a charge to view the 3D theatre. Enjoy a coffee stop or a meal at the award winning Dish Café onsite, or make use of the free BBQ and picnic facilities.

History & Culture

Gold & Sir Henry Parkes

The Parkes area remained relatively unsettled until 1862 when the discovery of gold led to a hastily erected ‘canvas’ town known as “Currajong”. There was a further discovery of gold in 1871, and in 1873 the then Prime Minister of New South Wales, Sir Henry Parkes visited the diggings, and on December 1, 1873 the name of the settlement was changed from Bushmans to Parkes in honour of the great statesman.

The Henry Parkes Centre

A major cultural tourism precinct incorporating the Parkes Visitor Information Centre and four unique collections including The King’s Castle Elvis Exhibit, Parkes Motor Museum, Henry Parkes Museum and Antique Machinery collection.

Memorial Hill

Memorial Hill provides the best vantage point for magnificent views over Parkes and the surrounding farmlands.

Bushman’s Hill

Visit the site of one of Parkes’ first gold mines, which operated over 100 years ago.

Kelly Reserve

The perfect place to stop and relax with idyllic views of Bushman’s dam and the 3075 ‘S’ Class Steam locomotive.

Fun & Adventure

Goobang National Park

Located 30 kilometres north-east of Parkes. It is approximately 42,600 hectares in size, 55 kilometres long and ranges in width from 200 metres to 20 kilometres, forming the largest area of remnant vegetation in the Central West of New South Wales. The Park incorporates Hervey, Curumbenya and Bumberry mountain ranges and surrounding country. Visitors are welcome to undertake passive recreation activities including camping.

Contact NPWS Lachlan Area Office P: 02 6851 4429

Back Yamma State Forest

Located approximately 25kms south of Parkes, the Back Yamma State Forest has a selection of single track and fire trail riding. Free camping, Gas BBQ, pets and horses allowed.

The Black Range

Located in Trundle and is an ideal spot to go bush walking or bird watching. It offers a peaceful and quiet place to enjoy the picnic ground facilities.

Bumberry Dam

Located 13 Kilometres east of Parkes towards Orange. Open to the public for recreational activities.

Stay, Shop & Eat


Parkes offers quality accommodation options with 15 motels, 4 bed and breakfasts, 7 hotels and 4 caravan parks with approximately 1500 bed spaces. From affordable 3 star motels to brand new modern 4.5 star.

Download Parkes & Region Accommodation Guide

RV Friendly Facilities

Parkes Shire welcomes RV Travellers with plenty of affordable overnight parking, dump facilities and services.


Browse through Clarinda Street and its side streets to check out the boutique, gift and variety stores.


Parkes Upmarkets held bi-monthly on the second Sunday of the month in Cooke Park.

Taste it all

Parkes offers a great selection of quality dining options that cater to a diverse range of tastes. Whether you desire a hearty meal from a first class restaurant or a simple yet satisfying snack from one of our stylish cafes and coffee shops.

Map & Directions

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