The Liverpool Plains Shire encompasses 5,086kms and its largest town Quirindi is situated 346kms north of Sydney.
Today, it also includes the township of Werris Creek and the villages of Ardglen, Willow Tree, Wallabadah, Blackville, Currabubula, Pine Ridge, Caroona, Walhallow, Spring Ridge and Premer.
The Liverpool Plains were a part of the traditional lands of the Kamilaroi Aboriginal Nation. The first squatters settled in the district c1827. In 1830 George Loder established Quirindi Station at the junction of the Quirindi Creek and the Jacob and Joseph Creek. The creek junction became an important camping area for teamsters heading north and north-west.
The town of Willow Tree is located between Murrurundi and Quirindi and was settled in the mid-19th century. Set on the New England Highway it is a great place to stop off for coffee and cake at one of the quaint cafes or have a more satisfying meal at the Willow Tree Inn.
Drop in to the Willow Tree Visitor Information Centre where you will find the 'Kamilaroi Highway, A People' display showcasing the history and heritage of the local Kamilaroi Aboriginal people. The display also marks the beginning of the Kamilaroi Highway story, which continues all the way through to Bourke.
Heading north toward Tamworth you'll find the First Fleet Memorial Gardens in Wallabadah just outside of Willow Tree. The gardens are dedicated to the sailors, marines, spouses, children, convicts and freemen of the First and Second Fleets.
The memorial consists of 11 circular gardens, representing the 11 ships of the First Fleet connected by a cobblestone path, inlaid with the names of those who served on the ships. Two additional gardens with stone tablets arranged by ship represent the Second Fleet.
Murrurundi is one hour south of Tamworth and half an hour north of Scone and boasts natural beauty, rich farming land and plenty of character.
Situated at the base of the Liverpool Plains, it is the last stop before heading over the ranges to Willow Tree in the north and bidding farewell to the Upper Hunter.
If you are interested in art, antiques and cafes or just finding some local eclectic pieces for your home, then the artisan village of Murrurundi is well worth a visit.
There are many art galleries and events by the Murrurundi Arts Council and the town's shops, cafes and pubs open their doors every weekend.
For a real country experience get along to The King of the Ranges Stockman's Challenge.
This event is quintessentially Australian and tests the traditional bush skills and abilities of Australia's best stock men and women. The bush poetry and damper making are all part of the fun.