Australia’s underground city is half way between Alice Springs and Adelaide, a mining community where the people are as colourful as the town’s famous opals.
Taking its name from the Aboriginal phrase ‘kupa piti’ (meaning ‘white man’s hole in the ground’), Coober Pedy is a bizarrely fascinating town where many residents escape the harsh desert climate by living underground: the soft opal-bearing earth is ideal for digging out your own des res.
Exploring Coober Pedy
A tour of the opal mines is a good prelude to exploring the stunning and aptly named Painted Desert, but to get a real taste of the area join the Outback Mail Run that links Coober Pedy, Oodnadatta and a number of Outback stations.
Coober Pedy can be reached by car, by train to Manguri or combined with a tour of the Flinders Ranges.