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Just across the ACT border, Queanbeyan is where rural life meets the city buzz.
It’s where old meets new, and the area boasts a whole lot of history, which is still evident in its historic buildings and small town feel. But new suburbs Googong and South Jerrabomberra, plus a whole range of developments, are bringing new life and new residents to the area.
Queanbeyan is known for its historic pubs and top notch pub grub, and while the main street’s watering holes have had modern updates, they’ve all retained their small town charm. It’s also home to a number of its own sporting teams, like the Monaro Panthers, Queanbeyan Tigers and Queanbeyan Blues, and a place where sporting champions are born, including race car driver Mark Webber, cricketer Brad Haddin, footballers Terry and David Campese, and Raiders captain Ricky Stuart.
While Canberra city is only a short drive away, residents in the Queanbeyan region also have easy access to the regional New South Wales towns of Braidwood and Bungendore, Canberra district wineries, and expansive nature reserves.
The dam is the major source of water for Canberra and Queanbeyan, and the Googong Dam Foreshore is also a picturesque spot to enjoy the great outdoors. While dogs and swimming in the dam aren’t allowed to ensure water quality is maintained, it’s an idyllic area for bushwalking, fishing, mountain biking, or going for a picnic. Human and electric powered boats like kayaks and sailboats are also allowed on the water.
The premiere entertainment precinct in the region, Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre hosts a year-round program of professional and amateur productions, including plays, musicals and operas, plus art exhibitions and other events.
QUEANBEYAN POOL AND AQUATIC CENTRE
You can swim all year round at Queanbeyan Aquatic Centre’s indoor 25 metre pool. Then during the warmer months, the facility is home to an exciting range of facilities for the family, including a 50 metre outdoor pool, a wet play area, barbecues and a kiosk.
Known for their beautiful bouquets, Flowers With Love in Jerrabomberra creates floral arrangements for weddings, gifts or just because. The florist is also a beautiful spot to grab a present, with a carefully selected range of chocolates, teas, gift cards, candles and hand creams available.
They’ve been serving the local community for more than 100 years, and these days, Lindbeck’s Butchery is one of the few remaining butchers that still uses whole carcasses, which they select, dry age, dissect and then serve, along with a decent dose of old fashioned quality service.
THE QUEANBEYAN MARKET
Held on the third Sunday of the month in the Town Park, this market is the place to mingle with local producers and stock up on locally-grown vegetables, fruit, eggs, dairy, honey, meat, wine, breads, cakes and more.
After migrating to Australian in 1960, Giovanni and Carla Balzanelli started smallgoods company Balzanelli in Queanbeyan, and three generations later they’re still lovingly creating their products. Four Bee Meats is their original deli, selling their award-winning range of smallgoods alongside local fruit and vege, local and imported gourmet groceries and cheeses, plus a range of antipasto board, gourmet sandwiches, salads and coffees available to take away or enjoy in store.
Sitting in the sun-drenched foyer of Queanbeyan's Performing Arts Centre, Gifts on Q is an arts boutique stocked with fun and quirky gifts sourced from across the Queanbeyan-Palerang region. Shop for local handmade artworks, craft items, glass objects, prints, cards, children’s gifts, jewellery, gourmet goods and more.
Queanbeyan is well-known for its top notch pub grub, and if that’s what you’re after, head to the Royal. First built in 1850, the iconic pub has been given an elegant update in more recent times, which includes an upstairs boutique function space. At the ground level bistro you can tuck into quality schnittys, parmys, burgers, pastas or pizzas, but probably keep room for their steak - it was named ‘Australia’s best pub steak’ in 2019.
Formerly the historic Queanbeyan Bowls Club, Campbell & George is the name of the venue’s new offering, with a fresh look and feel. The family-friendly venue has a variety of spaces to relax, wine and dine, with a sports bar serving pub classics and hearty schnittys, plus an Italian bistro with woodfired pizzas. Outdoors you can still find the original bowling green, which can be booked for functions or barefoot bowls.
A well-loved, family-owned takeaway pizza and pasta restaurant, Zucchini Bros first opened in the southside suburb of Chisolm three decades ago, and has expanded with stores in Greenway and now Queanbeyan’s suburb of Jerrabomberra. Swing by for one of their traditional or gourmet pizzas, made with fresh ingredients and loaded with generous toppings.
A mix of old and new, Queanbeyan offers a blend of housing types. From the historic homes of Queanbeyan central, to spacious rural blocks on the outskirts, house and land packages in the newer suburbs, and even some new apartment developments.
By Zango Team