The Willandra Lakes Region is an area on the southwestern part of New South Wales, Australia. The region, which comprises a series of lakes and sand formations, has yielded important palaentological discoveries from the Pleistocene period, among them the fossil remains of giant marsupials. It has also provided important cultural discoveries such as the world's oldest cremation site.
Willandra Lakes Region was named after the seventeen dry lakes in the region. It was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site during the 5th session of the World Heritage Committee, which met from 26-30 October, 1981, in Sydney, Australia.
Author: dfinnecy (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)
Mungo National Park
Author: Papphase (public domain)
World Heritage Site Inscription Details
Location: S 34 0 E 143 0
Inscription Year: 1981
Type of Site: Mixed
Inscription Criteria: III, VIII
What to See in Willandra Lakes Region
Willandra Lakes Region is where the oldest human remain, called Mungo Man, was discovered, within Mungo National Park. Also discovered here is Mungo Lady, the oldest known human to have been ritually cremated. These archaeological finds were made on the shore of Lake Mungo, a lake that dried up 14,000 years ago. Willandra Lakes Region has fantastic landscape, the most spectacular being a crescent-shaped dune called "Walls of China".
Willandra Lakes Region is located on the southwestern part of New South Wales, near the border with Victoria. It covers an area of 2,400 square kilometers, and includes Mungo National Park. The park is close to 900 km from Sydney. The nearest major town is Mildura, across the border in Victoria.
View Willandra Lakes Region in a larger map
Visiting Willandra Lakes Region
Willandra Lakes Region is one of those off-the-beaten-path heritage sites that is distant from all major cities. You should base yourself in either Adelaide or Melbourne, two of the nearest major cities. From there, you can check out with a local travel agency on how to get to Willandra Lakes Region.
Here's a list of hotels in Adelaide. I will also provide you the list of hotels in Melbourne. While these two cities are in neighboring South Australia and Victoria, they are in fact closer to Willandra Lakes Region than Sydney.
Fly or drive to Mildura. From there, take the Buronga Arumpo Road until you reach Mungo National Park. More details will be available at the visitor centre. It would be advisable to enter using 4WD vehicle. For more details, visit the New South Wales Tourism website, www.visitnsw.com
Book Hotel Rooms in Australia and Worldwide
Click here also for a full list of hotels in Australia or hotels worldwide. If you prefer budget accommodation in hostels, guesthouses or inns, check out hostels worldwide for budget accommodation providers with online booking.
As you plan your trip, consider all the local tours of Australia that you may want to include.