It’s around a five and half hour drive from Moree to Brisbane.
Just over seven hours drive to Sydney.
The nearest big town, Tamworth, is three hours away.
With a population of just over 7,000 in 2016, it’s a small town in the middle of nowhere.
I usually wear Benefit mascara, if I run out in the UK I’m at most twenty-minute walk away from somewhere that sells it.
If I run out of it out in Moree I’d have to drive five to six hours into Brisbane and another five or six to get back! So basically two days in a car for darker lashes. I’ll do without thanks.
Okay, so mascara’s not that bad but when your searching for a bridesmaid dress in a certain colour and style it’s nearly impossible and downright inexcusably expensive. That gave me headaches for months.
It is located in New South Wales on the Mehi River (which amuses me every time I hear it because it’s the sound my cat Leon makes), it has rich black soils, is famed for its cotton growing industry and is a major agricultural centre. This means it’s quite good for rural backpacker jobs and works.
Even so, there may be work but there are no backpackers here. There’s no backpacker culture or community, it’s too far out. Too far away. And nobody in their right mind would stay here for 6+ months… we must be insane.
The main reason we stayed? And the reason I actually like Moree?
It’s on the Moree Plains of Artesian Water County, which means there are natural hot springs running through the area.
Most of them have been transformed into swimming baths and establishments. We lived across the road from and frequented the Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre.
“Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre is the Artesian water oasis. Our facility boasts 2 external mineral-rich hot Artesian pools and a private wellness Artesian pool, program/hydrotherapy pool and 50m FINA standard pool. For the Children, let the hours pass by with our Hidroplay area and 10-metre high waterslide. Facilities also include our Moree Artesian Wellness Centre which house 7 treatment rooms where you can enjoy a wide range of beauty and therapeutic treatments from manicure, massage to acupuncture. You could just immerse yourself in the private spa retreat with plunge pool, Artesian jet beds and sauna facilities. If you would like to get the blood pumping after a long trip. Why not try out our state of the art gym and fitness centre. Equipped with a great range of cardio, pin loaded and free weights.”
It is well worth the visit and even better to live next too. I’ll really miss it. Especially with having frozen shoulder, the jet streams are really soothing. I’ve enjoyed spending hours relaxing in the pools and pacing up and down the Olympic sized pool at night. Plus the fact that it’s so far away from anything, means there isn’t much to spend any money on so we ended up saving quite a lot. Except when we took trips, that costs a lot in gas.
The motel we lived at Baths Motel on Warialda Street was also one of the most comfortable I’ve ever stayed at, yes the showers could do with more pressure, but with the pool across the road, I think I’ll let that slide. The beds were soooo comfy, and the staff ever so friendly and amazing to chat too. It became our home and the owner and his son and extended family our neighbours. Plus they gave us free chips from the chippy when someone failed to pick them up. Not great for the waist but ever so tasty and chicken salt, I imagine, is a close second to meth.
Speaking of drugs, there is an Ice problem in Moree, a little bit like other rural towns with a lack of police. Our place of work has been broken into around 9 times and there are frequent reports of stolen cars and drug-related violence. Moree is not somewhere I would go out strolling at night on my own. It just doesn’t feel that safe.
Saying that most of the townspeople we met, store owners, retail assistants etc were all nicer than the ones you meet in big cities and most of the people we lived with were pretty much down to earth, no fuss people. They’d appreciate nice things but there was no need to stand on ceremony or be subjected to snobbery.
Everywhere has it’s pros and cons though. It’s good parts and bad parts. But not every town has a series of gorgeous natural hot spring pools.
P.s If nature could just put more hot springs everywhere that’d be great.