The Living Desert Reserve – an outback gem of NSW
Nestled in the heart of the Barrier Ranges, just 9 kilometres outside the city of Broken Hill, lies a stunning oasis. The Living Desert Reserve is a spectacular combination of natural and sculptured land, filled with extraordinary history and wildlife. The reserve reflects the natural beauty of the area and features artistic contributions from artists from around the world. The reserve spans 2,400 hectares of breathtaking views and fascinating topography.
The Living Desert Flora and Fauna Sanctuary
The Flora and Fauna Sanctuary protects and enhances the local plants and animals. Broken Hill Council funded the development of the sanctuary as a practical way to manage and sustain the local ecosystem. The tranquil 180 hectares is bordered by a predator-proof fence to protect the wildlife from external threats and allow visitors to experience the sanctuary in all its beauty.
The Living Desert Sculpture Site
Nearly 25 years ago, Lawrence Beck organised artists from around the world to create unique pieces of art to be displayed on this stunning hilltop. Today, the site is populated by 12 distinctly exceptional sculptures, each with a different story to tell. There is direct vehicle access to the sculptures. Alternatively, there is a short walking trail that leads from the sanctuary carpark.
Explore the Aboriginal heritage
The surrounding area is home to the Paakaantji People or ‘people of the river’ and traditionally spans all the way from Wentworth to north-east Bourke. The population in the Broken Hill area remains approximately 5% and the culture and history remain strong. The Living Desert Reserve is a significant landmark for the Aboriginal People of the area and as such, there is fascinating history and heritage to explore.
Walking trails for all walks of life
No matter what your fitness level or walking experience, you’ll find picturesque trails to suit you. The trails follow stunning pathways through the gullies and rocky outcrops, along a historical and cultural journey of the area, or you can simply take a relaxing stroll where you might spot some native animals such as wallabies, emus or wedge-tail eagles. Feel free to explore on your own or book an organised tour.
Bring the whole family
The reserve is peppered with ideal picnic spots. There are gas BBQs available and many of the spots are wheelchair accessible, ensuring that everyone has the chance to enjoy the surrounds. Not far from the reserve is the wider Broken Hill area. In addition to the Living Desert Reserve, there are several national parks, museums and galleries all waiting to be discovered.
While there are no accommodation options in the reserve now, there are several Crown land camping and caravan parks to choose from. These include:
- Packsaddle Roadhouse
- Penrose Park