Ten kilometres down the Sturt Highway and east of Balranald, NSW, is Yanga homestead. Yanga station is large, so large that it has 160kms of river frontage to the Murrumbidgee River. The homestead is situated on a peninsula overlooking vast Lake Yanga. Now a National Park Yanga station was once 85,000 hectares and the largest privately owned station in the southern hemisphere* From the homestead one can see both the sunrise and the sunset over the lake.
Chiefly a sheep station it was established in the 1840’s. Construction of the homestead was commenced in the 1870’s of drop log design using Murray Pine. But this is no log cabin. For most of its working life the station was owned by an English shipping and pastoral family. It was sold completely intact to the government and is now managed by the National Parks of NSW.
Agatha Christie once stayed in the homestead and one wonders what drew her so far from home. Just like Agatha we were treated to tea and scones (cooked in the old kitchen) on the verandah overlooking the rose garden and lake.
This station was once so huge that it was the largest freehold property in the Southern Hemisphere and it had Australia’s first telephone system to communicate with the outbuildings. And who installed such a modern wonder? The nephew of Alexander Graham Bell no less.
We were lucky to not only have an excellent National Parks tour guide but our mate Peter too, he used to shoot feral pigs on this property in his youth as his family were friends of the Station Manager.