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Uki, Mount Warning, NSW, 2484

Head in the Clouds

by Jo-Ann Palmer.

Uki view to Mt Warning Founded on timber getting and dairying, Uki (pronounced yook-eye) is a beautiful and peaceful village located virtually at the foot of Mt Warning, with the name believed to be derived from the aboriginal name for a water fern with edible roots.

Today Uki is a community based on dairying, with a developing base of tourist accommodation and expanding residential small acreage.

Uki main street © D Palmer, Big Volcano

Situated on the southern arm of the Tweed River, just about anywhere in Uki will provide you with stunning views of Mt Warning and ring dykes commonly known as "the 3 Sisters".

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Local Tours & Attractions

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Lodgings in the village and surrounding area cater to a wide range of accommodation options, from affordable camping grounds and cabins, B&Bs, guesthouses, homestays and motel style accommodation, through to luxury couples only villas.


The village has been a listed Conservation Area since 1987, with heritage buildings including the old Convent, the old Bank Building and the old butter factory, now known as "The Buttery" and converted to art and craft galleries and artisans workspaces.

Outdoor picnic tables are dotted around to sit down and enjoy a delicious Uki Pie (made with love), while you admire your latest home decoration purchase from Esther & Cameron Handmade Uki, Antiques & Vintage at Uki or other local art and craft outlet inhabiting the building.

The Uki Community Technology Centre, provides office and secretarial services, internet access and training.

Uki Markets

The weekly weekend farmers market and monthly market bazaar fill the area surrounding the Buttery with fresh produce stalls from local farmers and local traders.

Across the road from the Butter Factory, the Uki Cafe - a favourite for locals,   offers a diverse menu based on locally sourced organic produce, with vegetarian, vegan and gluten free offerings available.

The historic Mt Warning Hotel burned down in 2013 and has now been rebuilt, with ample parking for local patrons, and visitors recovering from a Mt Warning climb, or visitors on a scenic weekend drive, looking for a friendly country pub to enjoy a break.

A number of landcare projects are replacing exotic creekbanks species with native trees and shrubs in a number of locations, including a project for a Uki Riparian Corridor and Platypus Walk.  A rainforest walk along the Tweed River (south arm), is accessible behind the Butter Factory.

And if you go bats over Flying Foxes, a colony might be found adjacent to the bridge on the southern side of the village.

Picnic facilities including B.B.Qs, are abundant at Clarrie Hall Dam, south of Uki.

The World Heritage listed Wollumbin (Mt Warning) National Park is less than 10 minutes drive, and Nightcap and Border Ranges national parks make for a pleasant full day driving tour.

If you are in Uki you are in the middle of it!

Uki butter factory

Uki Buttery © D Palmer, Big Volcano

Mt Warning Road

Mt Warning Road is on the way to Uki, and just 10 minutes drive from Murwillumbah.

It not only leads to the World Heritage listed Wollumbin - Mount Warning National Park, but along the way also features roadside produce stalls, and if you'd prefer some fine dining, the Rainforest Cafe or Mavis's Kitchen.

Available accommodation includes a caravan and camping park, a comfortable and affordable guesthouse, and exclusive B&B retreats where you can enjoy the natural environment in total luxury.

Dreamtime Stories

The Nganduwal people have many Dreamtime stories handed through the generations, with more than one legend attached to "Wullumbini Momoli" / Mount Warning / Wollumbin, and how its name came to be.

Some people say Wollumbin means cloudcatcher or weather-maker; others say it means turkey or Warrior Chief.  Here are two stories.

Wollumbin – The Turkey

Once, a long time ago, turkeys could fly greater distances than they can today.  Well, one turkey flew from Mt Brown. He had joined a gathering of other birds talking, when a giant bird approached. All the birds, the turkey too, were so frightened they flew away quickly.

Brush turkey

Brush turkey © D Palmer, Big Volcano

The turkey flew all the way to Wollumbin, and stopped on the top of the great mountain to catch his breath.  But as he rested, he was wounded in the head by a spear from a warrior.

Because of his head wound, the turkey's flying ability was impaired.

That is the reason why turkeys today can fly only short distances before they must rest; and if you look at Wollumbin you can see the mountain top has a small bend in it where the spear hit the turkey. The mountain tip is the point of the warriors spear.

Wollumbin – The Warrior Chief

The word, Wollumbin, is also said to mean warrior or fighting chief of the mountain.

Legend has it that the spirits of the mountains were warriors. The wounds they received in battles are the scars on the mountainside, and the thunder and lightning are the results of their battles.

If you look today towards Wollumbin from certain angles, you will see the face of the warrior chief in the mountain outline.

Wollumbin is a central sacred site for neighbouring tribes, as well as for the valley tribes.  There, special tests were conducted for the men who wanted to become clever men.  Not all men were allowed to climb to the suummit, only the clever men.

Excerpts; P43 (names), and  P38 (sacred site), from "Minjungbal, Aborigines and Islanders of the Tweed Valley", by Jolunda Nayutah and Gail Finlay, North Coast Institute for Aboriginal Community Education, 1988  ISBN: 0 7316 2824 1.

Getting to Uki, Mt Warning

Getting here.  Uki and Mt Warning are approximately 845 kilometres - about 11 hours drive north from Sydney, via Murwillumbah, and approximately 145 kilometres - about 90 minutes drive south from Brisbane, via the Pacific Motorway.

Driving options include the Pacific Highway in New south Wales, and the Pacific Motorway from Queensland, via Murwillumbah, and the Summerland Way in New South Wales, via Kyogle.


Domestic flights operate from all capital cities to Ballina/Byron Gateway Airport and Gold Coast Airport at Coolangatta. A number of international carriers servicing SE Asia, New Zealand and the Pacific fly into Gold Coast Airport.

Charter flights may also available to Lismore Airport. All airports have airport car hire or other car rental services available nearby.

Daily airport transfer services between Ballina/Byron Gateway Airport and Gold Coast Airport, are available to selected localities in the region, with some shuttles also going to Brisbane International Airport. Visit Gold Coast Airport Transfer Services for more information.


Daily interstate coach services are available from Murwillumbah to Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, and daily or overnight train service is available from Sydney to Brisbane via coach transfer at Casino.

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