Christmas Day feasts, splashing about in a swimming hole, and a night or three in a local motel during the Country Music Festival are all top of the list for visitors heading to Tamworth this summer. Although, enquiries have been slower than usual, Renae Townsend from the Tamworth Visitors Centre on Goonoo Goonoo Road, said they are expecting a rush when school holidays start in NSW on Tuesday, December 19. "We haven't had as many visitors coming through in the last week, but I expect that will change next week," Ms Townsend said. "A lot of the questions we've been having lately are all about the [Country Music] festival approaching." The 52nd Tamworth Country Music Festival runs from January 19 to 28, with hotels, motels and caravan parks expected to be packed to the rafters again in 2024. She said there is still some availability for accommodation during the Christmas and New Year holidays, but that people need to get in quick. "Because it can change every day. One day the [hotel or motel] might have five rooms available yesterday, and we could ring them today and there could be none," Ms Townsend said. However, the knowledgeable local about all things Tamworth, also urged people to phone around instead of trying to always book online because often websites aren't as up-to-date as the receptionists' notebooks at the motel, hotel and caravan parks. Ms Townsend, who has been working at the Visitors Centre for about two years, said it gets extremely busy close to Christmas as people stop in Tamworth mid-way between their trip to or from Victoria and Queensland. "They take their time a little bit, and we do find we get a lot of visitor numbers because of the Golden Guitar out the front," she said. The Christmas Day lunch at West League's Club is all booked out but there are still seats at the Powerhouse, Riviera Bar and Grill, and Golden Rose at the Tamworth Services Club, for the festive midday feast, Ms Townsend said. "I found that last year people were travelling and they may have ended up staying in town on Christmas Eve. So they were always looking for somewhere to go and have some lunch on Christmas Day," she said. Popular swimming spots for a splash with the family this year have included Lake Keepit, Chaffey Dam, Split Rock, McDonald River near Bendemeer, and Warrabah National Park, with Ms Townsend urging people to check water quality for blue-green algae and wear appropriate footwear in the bushland areas. Owner of Austin Tourist Park on Armidale Road in Tamworth, Frank Edwards, said they are all booked out for the Tamworth Country Music Festival but they have some availability for a few weeks from December 26. "At the moment, we are in the Christmas party season and people aren't travelling [as much]," Mr Edwards said. "But from December 26 onwards, families are getting away with their caravans, and because we're cheaper than the coast, I think that's why they're coming inland [to Tamworth]."