Cowra (population 9,500) is a typical substantial western NSW country town. Its history is as so many of the others, some gold, arrival of the railway in the 1880s eventually settling down to being a rural service town.
It does however have some unique aspects to its history. It was the site of prisoner of war camp during World War II where Japanese prisoners attempted a mass breakout in which over 200 Japanese died. Their graves are beautifully maintained at Cowra cemetery.
Today Cowra remembers this part of its history with a magnificent Japanese garden, seeks to promote international peace and hosts an annual celebration of International Understanding.