Historical Towns Directory

By clicking on a state or territory on the map, you can access a regional guide to Australia's historic towns, including a wealth of information about organizations, museums and locations.

We invite organisations to submit information for inclusion on this site. Please click here to email your information to the Directory Editor, Ros Stirling.



Find Naracoorte

The pastoral town of Naracoorte is located 330 kilometres from Adelaide in a beef, sheep, grains and grape growing region. The World Heritage-listed Naracoorte Caves are located approximately 10 kilometres south of the town.

St Andrews Presbyterian Church, Naracoorte

The first European settlers to arrive in the area in the 1840s called it Mosquito Plains.

George Ormerod settled the Naracoorte area in 1842 and played an important role in opening up the surrounding area for European settlement. Ormerod constructed the first stone settlers house on his Naracoorte run. Later additions were made to the homestead but it was under the ownership of Thomas Margarey, that the main Dartmoor Homestead (circa 1882) was built.

St Paul's Anglican Church

Prior to the arrival of white settlers the area was occupied by the Meintangk people, who clashed with the Europeans until the 1870s in a bid to defend their land. 'Naracoorte' derives from their language and is said to mean 'wide pool' or 'place of running water'.

The private town of Kincraig was established by William MacIntosh circa 1847. MacIntosh opened a store and an inn at this site.

St Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church

By 1849 the government town of 'Narracoorte' was surveyed north of the private settlement.

When the Victorian gold rush began in the early 1850s the town developed as a stopping point for prospectors travelling to and from the goldfields.

Naracoorte National Bank

The original section of the Commercial Hotel (1861) now predates all other buildings in town. The second storey was added in the 1920s.

In 1869 the name 'Naracoorte' was officially adopted for the town at the site.

Naracoorte District Council Office

Work on the Gothic-style St Andrews Presbyterian Church began in 1874 and the spire was added the following year. St Paul's Anglican Church was completed in 1880. The Catholic Church completes the trio of churches located on the hill overlooking Naracoorte.

Naracoorte still contains a number of its limestone buildings dating from the 1870s and 1880s. The National Bank (now National Australia Bank), built in 1873, is one such structure. The former Commercial Bank of South Australia building (1884) is now the District Council Office.

The first trains arrived at Naracoorte in 1876.

Naracoorte became a municipality in 1924.

Naracoorte Visitor Information Centre
Phone: 1800 244 421
Fax: 08 8762 0745

36 MacDonnell Street
Naracoorte SA 5271

Postal Address:

PO Box 445
Naracoorte SA 5271

Email: naracoortevic@rbm.com.au
Website: http://www.naracoortetourism.com.au
Naracoorte Art Gallery
Information: The Naracoorte Art Gallery is the oldest regional gallery in South Australia. Housed in a beautiful Georgian home once owned by the Pavy family, the gallery is now a showcase of traditional and contemporary visual arts. The permanent collection of Australian Art includes etchings by John Goodchild, Australian Contemporary works on paper, aboriginal prints, paintings and ceramics. The Naracoorte National Trust Furniture and social history collection is also on view. Each year the gallery hosts exhibitions sourced from the National Gallery and solo and group exhibitions from local and interstate artists.
Phone: 08 87623390

Cnr Ormerod St and Riverside Dve
Naracoorte SA

Email: naracoortegallery@gmail.com
The Sheep's Back Museum
Information: The museum portrays the stories of the people and the wool industry in this region. Incorporated in The Sheep's Back Museum is the Limestone Landscapes Exhibition which provides an overview of the people and the landscapes of the region. The main galleries of this award winning museum are located in a stone flour mill built in the 1860's. A separate wool technology display includes a huge and unique robotic shearing machine. Other interesting outside exhibits are also available. Open: Monday to Friday 9am - 5pm, Saturday and Sunday 9am - 4pm.
Phone: 08 87621399

36 MacDonnell St,
Naracoorte 5271

Naracoorte Caves World Heritage Fossil Site
Information: Naracoorte Caves National Park is South Australia's only World Heritage site. The site was officially recognised in 1994 because of the importance of the fossils in the caves. The park is home to over 100 known fossil deposits, preserving the bones of megafauna that became extinct roughly 60,000 years ago. Naracoorte Caves preserves Australia's most complete fossil record for the past 500,000 years.
Phone: 08 8762 2340
Postal Address:

PO Box 134
Naracoorte 5271

Email: naracoortecaves@sa.gov.au
Website: http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/naracoorte/Home



Index of all
Australian Heritage articles