Berridale is a small town of 844 people in New South Wales, and is the administrative centre of the Snowy River Shire, one of Australia's major inland tourism destinations. Berridale lies at 860 metres above sea level between the towns of Cooma and Jindabyne and 435 kilometres south of Sydney.
Aborigines long occupied the area but in small numbers. The European settlement was founded in the 1860s, when Scotsman William Oliver built his house there in 1863 and opened a roadside store, naming the location as a variation on his home town in Scotland, Berriedale. The dry climate later proved the town ideal for growing fine merino wool. Oliver's store became a wayside inn in 1870, which still exists as the Berridale Inn, and a granite store was built. A post office opened in the town in 1869 with a telegraph office opening in 1870.
The town nicknamed itself the 'Crossroads of the Snowy' during the period when gold miners would pass through on their way to the Adaminaby and Kiandra goldfields. Berridale was also nicknamed the 'Town of the Poplars' in the 1990s due to the main road through it from Cooma to Jindabyne (Jindabyne Road/Kosciusko Road ) being lined by an avenue of poplars. The town grew slowly with the pastoral industry forming the mainstay of the local economy. The town hosted a work camp for the Snowy Mountains Authority although its population did not grow as much as Jindabyne or Cooma during the Snowy Mountains Scheme. Berridale is also home to one of the largest collections of heavy machinery and associated equipment salvaged from construction of the Snowy Mountains Scheme. The items include dozers, graders, scrapers, dumpers, loaders, tournapulls, trucks, snow equipment and numerous other pieces, from well known makers such as International, Euclid, LeTourneau Westinghouse, Allis Chalmers, Caterpillar, Thornycroft, Leyland, and others and numbers in excess of 100 pieces. A museum is planned for future construction to display the items.
In recent decades, Berridale has developed a tourism industry based on its location en route to the NSW snow fields. John Howard was staying in Berridale in September 1985 on a family ski holiday when Andrew Peacock announced that he would call a Party Room meeting to replace him as Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party. When Howard was re-elected as Deputy Leader on 5 September, Peacock was in an untenable position and resigned with Howard becoming leader of the Liberal Party and the Leader of the Opposition.