Home to one of the most ethnically diverse communities in Australia, Bankstown lies south-west of Sydney’s CBD. It was referred to as “Yankstown” during World War II due to the large number of United States servicemen who were stationed at Bankstown Airport. Today, more than 60 different languages are spoken by its residents while the suburb’s global eateries offer cuisines from across the world.
Things to do in Bankstown
Get up close to rare aircraft at the Australian Aviation Museum, which explores the country’s role in global aviation development at the former RAAF headquarters of Bankstown Airport. The collection includes World War II-era uniforms, a 1931 Clancy Skybaby and a Fawcett 120 manufactured in Bankstown, as well as a mock-up Boeing 747-400 that’s used as a film set.
On the airport’s western edge lies Mirambeena Regional Park, a string of nature reserves that hug the banks of the Georges River and Prospect Creek. Matthew Flinders and George Bass famously camped here during their 1796 exploration in the “Tom Thumb”, with the park now a popular recreational destination for bushwalking and model boating. Travelling with kids? They can let off some steam in the adventure playground of Flinders Slopes.
If you’re regularly glued to your smartphone, make a point of visiting the National Telecommunications Museum, a small, volunteer-run operation in the heart of Bankstown. Its collection includes early telegrams, a broadcast desk from the ABC and original speaking clocks, with visitors encouraged to write their name in Morse code.
Getting around Bankstown
Bankstown is a 20-minute drive from the Sydney Airport and 35 minutes from the CBD, with trains connecting the city to Bankstown railway station. Buses travel throughout the suburb and connect to nearby destinations, while the town centre is pedestrian-friendly for navigating on foot.