Welcome to New England
Despite its unfamiliarity, and the fact the Gamilaroi people had owned this land for untold millennia, the verdant scenery of this region prompted its first British occupiers to name it 'New England'. While visitors may squint hard to see the likeness, the forested uplands of the Northern Tablelands reminded the homesick early settlers of the Scotland and Wales, and the landscape bears 'Celtic' names and the label of 'Celtic country' to this day. It's a stretch, but there's no denying its rustic beauty when mist settles in the cool-climate hilltops and fertile valleys, little churches are glimpsed in oak-studded paddocks and little-used roads wind through landscapes greener than most in Australia. Tempering this fragile idyll, regional centres such as Tamworth and Armidale are robust and dynamic towns with plenty to offer those seeking culture, food and comfort.