Wingecarribee Shire covers an area of 2700 square kilometres, has an estimated population of 51,134 and is also known as The Southern Highlands of New South Wales.
This Shire is an important catchment area for water supply to Sydney, Wollongong and the Northern Shoalhaven. Much of the Shire is located at or above 640 metres above sea level, with the main towns being Bowral, Moss Vale and Mittagong.
With four distinct seasons, the Southern Highlands is renowned for many European-style gardens. With a land area almost as big as Sydney, the region contains many micro-climates. Average rainfall is approximately 1000 ml per annum where summers are comfortable and partly cloudy and the winters are short, cold, and mostly clear. The average temperature for January is 25C and 12C for July.
There are 20 primary schools, two public high schools, four private high schools, one special needs school, Moss Vale TAFE and a University of Wollongong campus.
Two hospitals offer an extensive range of on-site medical, surgical and support services. There are numerous aged care homes, plus home care supports and facilities for residents with a disability. A broad range of services such as dental, optometry, podiatry, physiotherapy, alternative health practitioners and therapies are on offer. Community centres and programs include drop in, counselling, loan and crisis support and information.
16 preschools, family day care and out of school hours care. Resident and community associations, Rotary, CWA, Lions, Red Cross, Men’s Sheds; gardening, environmental and bush care clubs.
There are 23 sporting grounds hosting numerous clubs representing most sports, three outdoor swimming pools and a year-round aquatic centre.
Annual food, music and cultural festivals; performing arts, cinema, galleries and libraries and Ngununnggula Regional Gallery (opening 2021)
Numerous cafes and restaurants at a broad range of price points, in all towns and villages; with a growing focus on locally grown produce; 18 cellar doors and four breweries.
Main street shopping in the towns of Bowral, Moss Vale and Mittagong and villages of Berrima, Robertson and Bundanoon. Highlands Marketplace and Highlands Hub offer a mix of stores and parking in one convenient location in Mittagong.