cordeaux dam
Australia

Finding Peace Away from the City at Cordeaux Dam

I’ve lived in Sydney my whole life, and I had no idea we had so many dams surrounding our amazing city, like the historic Cordeux Dam.

Located around an hour and a half south of Sydney, somewhere in the middle of Campbeltown and Wollongong is one of Sydney’s most historical locations called Cordeaux Dam. It’s heritage listed and provides water to the Macarthur and Illawarra regions south.

Construction of the dam began in 1918 and was completed in 1926 at a cost of 945K pounds, with walls consisting of large sandstone blocks, which were quarried onsite and cemented together and hold approx. 93,640 ML of water in the reservoir.

It’s one of the few dam which still allows the public to picnic at the local surrounding parks and walk along the massive concrete walls holding in all the water. And it’s remarkably beautiful to admire both the architecture and construction of the dam whilst enjoying the peace and tranquility of the water, the sounds of the birds and the wind rustling the trees.

We spent at least an hour at the dam, enjoying the scenes, taking photos and walking from the carpark all the way to the end of the dam wall. Of course, it doesn’t take an hour to walk the length of the dam, we just took our time, reading the history of the dam on plaques along the way. Stopping to admire the sites from being so high above the water.

It was so peaceful and calming there. And, as it was midweek when we visited, no other visitors were about, so we had the dam all to ourselves; apart from a only worker who was walking the length of the dam wall carrying out inspections.

If you do decide to picnic there, the gas barbecues are presently switched off and there is no power. Which is on their website at https://www.waternsw.com.au/supply/visit/cordeaux-dam

However, the grounds are open for you to sit and enjoy food and drink at your leisure, take a stroll though the surrounding bushland and dam. There are also toilets too.

It’s easy to locate and makes for a great drive on your day off whether it by mid-week out during the weekend. Though do be mindful of the hours, as the gates are closed at 5pm sharp and there is a long drive through the national park and bushland area to get to the dam..

Directions:

  • Cordeaux Dam is about 94 kilometres drive from Sydney.
  • From Sydney, take the Hume Highway (F5) south towards Canberra.
  • Past Campbelltown, take the Wollongong/Picton turn-off.
  • The Cordeaux Dam entrance is about 10 minutes on the right, and is signposted.

Hours:

  • 10 am to 5 pm daily
  • Extended hours, 10 am to 7 pm, on weekends and public holidays during daylight saving time
  • Entry is free
  • No entry is permitted 15 minutes prior to closing time

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