motorcycles, travel, friendship, respect… I may drift off into WTF-land at times so hang in there.

Half Dozen Shops, A Pub And A Bit Of History


Have you ever gone out for a ride and stumbled across a place you thought was just perfect?

Not perfect because it has all the mod-cons, or because it has a great view or anything like that, but because it’s a sleepy village with 1/2 dozen shops, a pub and a bit of history.

On my way through Murwillumbah NSW a while ago, I found just such a place.

Not only did it have the required 1/2 dozen shops, a pub and a bit of history, it had a really quaint name too: Tumbulgum.

The Tweed Valley Way

The Tweed Valley Way

Originally called Tweed Junction, Tumbulgum lies on the banks of the Tweed River, about half way between Murwillumbah and Chinderah along The Tweed Valley Way.

This picturesque village was established in the 1840’s by timber cutters who logged the local area for its Red Cedar, and grew to become a thriving commercial centre for the Tweed Valley until 1897 when the rail line from Sydney was extended into Lismore 90km (56 miles) to the south.

In around 1901 the Murwillumbah Bridge was built and the rail line into Lismore had proved it’s worth, resulting in Tumbulgum losing its status as a major commercial centre.

It quickly settled into life as the village at the junction of the Tweed and Rous Rivers.

Tumbulgum Boat Ramp

Tumbulgum Boat Ramp

From 1901 on, the village relied on local sugar cane growers and passing traffic along the Pacific Highway to sustain the local economy.

But, in 1996 after the Pacific Motorway bypassed the village to the east, passing trade from the Pacific Highway (now called The Tweed Valley Way) died off, and, like many small towns succumbing to progress, the town struggled.

Tumbulgum General Store

Tumbulgum General Store

Today Tumbulgum is a heritage listed historic village which is a popular fishing and boating destination for the locals, and a popular stop for motorcyclists who have come in from Brisbane to the north via the Nerang-Murwillumbah Road, from Billinudgel along The Tweed Valley Way to the south or The Lions Road and Uki to the west.

House Of Gabriel - Formerly Tumbulgum Bakery (Est 1909)

House Of Gabriel – Formerly Tumbulgum Bakery (Est 1909)

It’s a great little spot, right by the river, and most riders pull up at the pub for a counter lunch and beverage. While others like me, settle for the typical Aussie staple for lunch: A meat pie and a Coke from the local general store.

It’s cheap, fills the hole under your nose and gives you a chance to stretch out on a patch of grass and watch the locals while you relax.

It’s bit of a boost to the local economy too, who appreciate the trade.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, next time you pass by a turnoff to some out-of-the-way place, chuck a U-turn and check out whats on the other side of that bridge, beyond the wooded glen and to the left of the black stump.

You might just reveal a hidden gem.



6 responses

  1. It looks like a very idyllic place to get away.

    And Tumbulgum is so much more fun to say that Tweed Junction.

    Liked by 2 people

    December 16, 2015 at 4:43 AM

  2. I’d like to echo Trobairitz’s comment: “Tweed Junction” sounds like a retirement community for nose-talking, Ivy League professors (no offense, of course, to any nose-talking, Ivy League professors that might read this. 😀 ).

    Also—and I mentioned this to another Australian blogger a while back—I have serious place name envy… Y’all have the freakin’ coolest place names ever!

    Keep up the village support, Ghost. If riders don’t keep ‘em alive, ain’t no one gonna keep ‘em alive.

    Liked by 1 person

    December 17, 2015 at 2:47 PM

  3. Fantastic. I love discovering off the beaten track places.

    Liked by 1 person

    January 13, 2016 at 6:31 AM

  4. anthony

    Just came across this post….I had lunch down there a week ago at the pub, I was born and raised in Murwillumbah, so know Tumbulgum very well. It’s a nice place to sit and watch the world go by!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    February 8, 2016 at 8:10 PM

  5. Pingback: eBook: Ballina Base Motorcycle Touring Guide | EXPERIMENTAL GHOST

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