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Wagga Wagga (population 58,700) is more commonly known simply as 'Wagga' (which means 'crow' in the language of the Wiradjuri, the largest Aboriginal tribe in New South Wales, who first settled in the area). The city is situated on the Murrumbidgee River, 486 km south-west of Sydney, with Cootamundra and Temora to the north, Narrandera to the west, Albury to the south and Tumut in the east. It forms the hub of a vast district that supports the production of wheat, fat lambs, the dairy industry and mixed farming.

Settlers beat the explorers to this district: Charles Sturt was almost ten years behind the land-seekers when he came
 
through in 1829. Robert Holt Best founded the Wagga Wagga run in 1832. Now the city is a vital business, agricultural, educational and industrial centre, one of the bigger settlements in the southern region.

History buffs can participate in the three National Trust walks, passing by buildings that date from 1865. Other attractions are the zoo, art gallery, botanic gardens and Historical Museum. With prolific parks and gardens, including a formal Shakespearian garden, the city can be a visual delight in spring.

Sports enthusiasts will find golf, tennis, fishing, bushwalking, bowls, croquet and water sports as well as greyhound racing, horseracing and trotting are all available. Music lovers can enjoy the orchestral concerts, which are held at the city's outdoor music bowl and entertainment centre.

Charles Sturt University even has its own winery, which is open for tastings and sales. Festivals include the Summer School of Strings in January, the Wagga Wagga Gold Cup in April-May and the Golden Gown Awards in June. In September there is the Jazz Festival, the Riverina Antique Fair and the City to Lake Fun Run, followed in October by the Garden and Leisure Festival.

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