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York is a town in the Avon Valley in the Wheatbelt region of Western Australia. It's 100 km east of Perth and in 2021 had a population of 2399. It developed in Victorian times and has been little altered since, so its main street is lined with historic buildings.


By 1830 the British colony on Swan River, the future Perth, had room a-plenty for building but had insufficient farmland to feed its population. An expedition probed east of the Darling mountains and found good pastoral country here in the Avon valley, so it was quickly settled by farmsteads. A town appeared by 1836 but there was violent conflict with the Aboriginal people, the Ballardong Noongar, until a military sally killed enough of them to put British occupation beyond doubt. As elsewhere in Western Australia, a shortage of labour was filled by transported convicts, many of them Irish, at a time when the rest of Australia had ceased to use them. They were housed in a Convict Depot, and many settled in the region when their sentence was served rather than return to poverty and oppression in the "old country". The railway arrived in 1885, making York the nearest station to the Yilgarn goldfields another 300 km east, so miners thronged the town before setting off on the long hike. This ceased in 1891, when another line east was routed via Northam and eventually ran out to the goldfields.

The town has always been agricultural and never drew in heavy industry or a large population. This means its old architecture has been preserved, in a riot of late Victorian styles, and is the main reason to visit.

York Visitor Centre is in the former Town Hall at 81 Avon Terrace, open daily 9:30AM-4PM.

Get in[edit]

Map of York (Western Australia)

By road from Perth follow Hwy 94 east to Beechina then turn off onto Great Southern Highway.

Transwa buses run from Perth five days a week, taking two hours to York via Northam, and continuing to Beverley, Narrogin, Katanning, Tambellup, Tenterden and Albany.

They also run three days a week via Mundaring, taking 90 min, and continuing to Hyden (for Wave Rock), Lake Grace, Newdegate and Esperance.

1 York bus stop is just a turning loop on Joaquina St by the old railway station (now a private residence), with no facilities. Passenger trains were axed in 1978 but the line is still used for freight.

Get around[edit]

The historic centre is a small walkable area south end of Avon Terrace, and accommodation and eating places cluster along this strip.

The town straggles north for a couple of miles and onto the east bank of the river along Hwy 120, but you've little reason to go there.

The town taxi service has folded.


  • Avon Terrace the main street is lined with 19th century buildings.
  • Town Hall at 81 Avon Terrace is now the visitor centre and performance venue.
  • York Motor Museum, 116 Avon Terrace (opposite Settlers House & Hotel), +61 8 9641 1288, . Daily 9AM-4PM. Community-run motor museum with 90 vehicles and motorcycles from 1897 to 2010. The building (from 1908) was originally a row of shops. Adult $12, conc $10, child $3. York Motor Museum (Q77967180) on Wikidata York Motor Museum on Wikipedia
  • York Courthouse, 132 Avon Terrace (next to Motor Museum), +61 424 445794. F-Su 10AM-4PM. This Victorian complex contains the courthouse, jail and police station, and now also hosts the town art gallery.
  • St Patrick's is the Roman Catholic church, at 22 South St towards the bus stop. In Victorian Gothic style, it was opened in 1883 to serve the convict population, many of them Irish. Not only the labourers but the architect were convicts: Joseph Nunan (1842-1895) was a Fenian implicated in shooting a policeman. He was pardoned in 1869 but chose to remain in Fremantle, designing several buildings around the region.
  • Uniting Church (combining the Methodists, Presbyterians and Congregationalists) was opened in 1888, replacing a Methodist chapel of 1854 that was too small from the outset. It's at 109 Centennial Drive a block south of Faversham House (see Sleep).
  • 1 York Residency Museum, 4 Brook St, +61 8 9641 1751. F 1-3PM, Sa Su 11AM-3PM. This was built in the 1850s as a residence for the Deputy Superintendent of the Convict Depot, which hired out convicts as local labour. It's now a volunteer-run museum of local history. Adult $5, conc $4, child $3. Residency Museum (Q56085282) on Wikidata Residency Museum, York on Wikipedia
  • 2 Holy Trinity Church is Anglican, opened in 1855 - it too was erected by convict labour. It's east of the river at the corner of Newcastle St and Pool St.
  • Suspension Bridge is a footbridge across the river between town centre and Pool St by Holy Trinity. First opened in 1888, the present version is from 1988, as predecessors succumbed to floods, a stray horse, decay, and a party of 30 hikers merrily swinging back and forth on the structure.
  • 3 Mount Brown Lookout is reached by driving up Steere Rd, which becomes Pioneer Rd. The picnic area is open 24 hours.


York town hall
  • Golf: York WA Golf Club is 3 miles west of town along Great Southern Highway.
  • York Racing, established in 1843, has about four flat horse-racing events a year. The track is on the old road to Spencers Brook two miles north of downtown.
  • York Agricultural Show is on the first Saturday in September at Forrest Oval.


  • Old York Mill is a flour mill at 10 Henrietta St, converted into small stores and cafes.
  • IGA is the supermarket, at 138 Avon Terrace 50 m north of the motor museum. It's open M-F 7AM-7PM, Sa Su 8AM-5PM.
  • Puma filling station is south end of Avon Terrace at the bend in Highway 120, open daily 5AM-6PM.


  • Avon Terrace has Bellissimo York, Imperial Hotel, Castle Hotel, Dayzies Ice Cream, Nguyen's Bakery, Jules, Settlers' Cafe, Golden York Chinese and Botanicalia.
  • York Carriage Diner is an old tram on South St by the river, open F-Su 4-8PM.


Imperial Hotel

Eating places serve alcohol, there are no stand-alone bars.


  • 1 York Motel, 10 William St, +61 8 9641 2066. Mixed reviews for this motel just off the main highway. B&B double $150.
  • 2 Hillside Country Retreat, 30 Forest St, +61 411 199541. Charming restored farm cottages, feels remote but just two blocks from main street. Double (room only) $230.
  • Nosh & Nod is a basic, poky place at 75A Avon Terrace near the station.
  • 3 Settlers Hotel, 125 Avon Terrace, +61 8 6615 7000. Two-story hotel and pub. "Heritage" rooms are on the nicer courtyard, the others are on a separate courtyard with a swimming pool. Decent pub with food, sometimes with live music. Double (room only) $110.
  • Settlers House is cheek by jowl with Settlers Hotel and shares some facilities, but is an entirely separate pub and hotel.
  • 4 Faversham House, 24 Grey St, +61 8 9641 1366. Rave reviews for this comfy welcoming hotel in a historic mansion built from 1840. B&B double $300. Faversham House on Wikipedia
  • 5 Travellers Rest Caravan Park, 2 Eighth Rd, +61 414 510503. Well-run site north edge of town, facilities old but usually clean. Pets welcome. Tent $30, hook-up $35.


As of Feb 2024, York has a patchy 4G signal from Telstra, but nothing from Optus or Vodafone, and no signal on the approach roads. 5G has not reached this area.

Go next[edit]

  • Northam to the north was founded about the same time as York and has similar historic buildings.
  • Perth the state capital has all the facilities and amusements you could wish for.
  • Merredin east has limited attractions but is a good stopover on the road out to Kalgoorlie.
  • Hyden southeast is near Wave Rock. This road eventually brings you to Ravensthorpe and Esperance on the south coast.

This city travel guide to York is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.