Sofala Cottage is an historic rammed earth miners Cottage – circa 1873. Edged by national parks and backing on to the Turon River this historic cottage is a perfect escape for lovers of nature and history, romantics and artists. Sofala is situated in the beautiful Turon valley 40km north of Bathurst on the road to Hill End. Approximately 3 hours drive west of Sydney across the Blue Mountains. It is Australia’s oldest surviving gold town with a rich artistic history. The landscape is scarred by its past yet remains intensely beautiful. Russell Drysdale and Donald Friend visited the town in 1947. On arrival, Friend described Sofala as a ‘lovely crazy old village - perfect’. Sofala Cottage is established and run by artist Louisa Antico.
Overseas visitors and local travellers will enjoy exploring the Upper Turon area for reminders of the gold rush days. Sofala is one of the oldest and most unusual gold mining towns in NSW. The village has a genuine atmosphere and authentic charm. When you walk along the main road it's like stepping back in time.
Sofala cottage is a traditional miner’s cottage so the rooms are modest in size. The cottage is self contained and can accommodate up to 2 guests. The bedroom has a queen size bed, living room with a wood fired heater and kitchen with basic cooking facilities. The bathroom has a claw foot bath and toilet. The cottage is made from rammed earth, a method of construction used in the area during the 1800s. The walls are extremely thick keeping the interior surprisingly cool during the hot Summer months. There is a wonderful view from the front porch of the cottage framed by "Nipple Mountain" - a local landmark. The landscape is scattered with the remains of Chinese diggings and an old cemetery sits quietly in the distance. The kangaroos are always present in the landscape and often visit the cottage for a graze or just to rest in the shade of one of the gardens many fruit trees.
Please contact Louisa to confirm availablity before booking Sofala Cottage. Simply send an email or call 02 63377510 and Louisa will respond as soon as possible to your enquiry.
The property is surrounded by beautiful gardens planted with roses, iris, lavender, wisteria, bulbs and herbs. The herbs are there for picking. There are numerous old fruit trees including cherry, apple, peach and plums. A hedge of large chestnut trees keep the back garden cool in Summer and a variety of grape vines adorn the verandas. If you're staying at the property when the trees and grape vines are fruiting please pick some for your table. The birds and local fauna will feast on the rest. Each season transforms the garden and surrounding landscape and has its own unique beauty.
Sofala Cottage provides a perfect escape from the trappings of modern life. No TV, phone, internet, clocks and limited mobile coverage. Take a walk to the village just 1k down the road, if you need to make a mobile call for better reception. There is also a public phone box in the main street opposite the post office. Sofala has a wonderful old pub The Royal, Sofala Café, Post office/souvenir shop, second-hand book shop and museum. Its a lovely walk to the village as you follow the winding road that runs alongside the Turon River. And drop into the Western Goldfields Museum and meet the curator Mr Wigglesworth on the way. If you feel like a swim there's a water hole down the road that's a popular destination during the Summer months. Its approx. 1k down the road in the opposite direction to the village on the river side. There is also another great swimming hole at Wallaby Rocks which is situated just out of Sofala on the road to Hill End.
Trout fishing is also popular in the area and there are also gold fossicking tours you can book if you're feeling lucky. Down the road is Hill End, another wonderful historic gold mining town with a rich artistic history. Bathurst is a 30min drive away if you need supplies or feel like dining out at one of its many restaurants and cafes. Mudgee, known for its vast vineyards, boutique wineries and restaurants and is just 1hr drive from Sofala. Day trips can comfortably be made to many Nature Reserves and National Parks including Jenolan Caves, Abercrombie Caves. Other historical towns in the area include Millthorpe, Carcoar and O'Connell.
Sofala Cottage is a place where artists from various fields, such as the Visual Arts, Literature, Music and Photography can come to develop ideas, create new work or deepen their existing art practice. Artists are welcome to stay throughout the year.