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Coober Pedy
Coober PedyRvTrips explores Coober Pedy
RvTrips explores Coober Pedy
Coober Pedy
Australia SA  5723
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Coober Pedy

Description

Coober Pedy is a town in northern South Australia, 846 kilometres north of Adelaide on the Stuart Highway. According to the 2011 census, its population was 1,695 (953 males, 742 females, including 275 indigenous Australians). The town is sometimes referred to as the "opal capital of the world" because of the quantity of precious opals that are mined there. Coober Pedy is renowned for its below-ground residences, called "dugouts", which are built in this fashion due to the scorching daytime heat. The name "Coober Pedy" comes from the local Aboriginal term kupa-piti, which means "white man's hole".
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RvTrips' comments

04 Jun 2016

Coober Pedy is the Opal capital of Australia and some say the world. It is located in the desert area of South Australia on the Stuart Highway about 540 kilometres north of Port Augusta and 395 kilometres south of the Northern Territory Border.

Nothing really prepared us for the numerous mounds of dirt left beside a mine shaft when digging for opals. They are everywhere and signs warn of the dangers of wandering near these areas as there are open holes scatted all over the place.  

We stayed in our caravan at the  Big 4 Stuart Range Outback Resort which was lovely - very welcoming with great amenities. Remember that you will need to have water on board as there are very few sites in any park in town that have water connection points. A water dispenser is available at Stuart Range Outback Resort (coin operated) and there are 24 hour water filling stations next to the Visitor Information Centre (the cost was 20c for about 30 litres).

Here are some of the things we did while staying at Coober Pedy:

  • Visitor Information Centre situated in the council offices - great maps and tour booking facilities
  • Umoona Opal Mine and Museum. Interesting short film about opals and how they were found near Coober Pedy, atour of an old opal mine and see examples of room created in the rock underground.  Beautiful opal jewellery for sale with authentication certificates.
  • Breakaways drive – about 32 kilometres north of Coober Pedy see colourful low hill on the desert 
  • Dog Fence or "Dingo Fence" which stretches for over 5,300 kilometres across 3 states.
  • Moon Plain - desert like moonscape with fossilised shells, soft clay and cracks in the dirt that go on forever into the distance.
  • Coober Pedy Golf Course – very interesting.  Tee mounds consist of artificial grass squares and the fairways are dirt with black sand greens.  
  • Big Winch Lookout in the centre of town - overlooking surrounding area
  • pizza from Nostimo -located on the premises at Stuart Range caravan park
  • Johns Pizza Bar and Restaurant - yummy lunch

This is quite a unique town with houses, motels, bookshops and various other outlets built into the side of hills, or underground and dug out of rock. It is very hot here and these underground rooms enable residents to stay cool. There are several working mines around town that run tours but we did not have enough time during this trip. Coober Pedy needs to be seen to be believed - this could be the biggest recycling town in the state as old rusty cars and trucks are reused - often as signs.

One thing we missed during our visit was to join the Mail Run Day Tour where you head out with the Outback mail man delivering mail to cattle stations and historic places like Oodnadatta. Apparently this is a long trip of about 12 hours but I think it would be absolutely fascinating.

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Explore Coober Pedy with RvTrips and find out where to stay, what to do and what to see. Helping caravan, motorhome and camper owners have a great holiday.
RvTrips v3.20 Updated: 16-08-2017
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