Even though we only make a very brief stop at the historic buildings in New Norcia for lunch this is a fascinating place where we could spend so much more time. It is famous for the Benedictine Order. The historic settlement was founded by Dom Rosendo Salvado on 1 March 1846 and the church still contains the tomb of Dom Rosendo Salvado. This church is the oldest Catholic Church still in use in WA. In addition to the church, other significant historical buildings include the monastery, colleges and convents.
You really should see the Abbey Church, the Hotel, St.Ildephonusus (a residence for boys) and St.Gertrudes (a residence for girls).
St. Ildephonusus (a residence for boys)
St. Gertrudes (a residence for girls)
Salvado's original vision was to create, among the indigenous peoples of the Victoria Plains, a Christian, largely self-sufficient village based on agriculture. However, after the decimation of the local populations by introduced diseases in the 1860's, he concentrated his activity on giving a practical education to the indigenous children who were brought here from all over the state.
If you want to walk the heritage trail, grab a very quick sandwich for lunch and eat on the way. The heritage trail is suitable for all walkers and is about 2km long. There is also a museum and art gallery you can visit if you wish where an admission fee applies. Of course if you want to sit under the tree and relax (maybe finish your book you are nearly through) you are most welcome to do that as well.