Tom's Working Opal Mine
If your kids (or you) have been inspired to take up opal mining, this underground working mine is the place to find out how to prospect for opal, how to stake a claim and how opal is formed. Don a miner’s helmet and switch on the headlamp for a one-and-a-half-hour underground tour. Imagine how excited your kids will be to have a go at using a real divining rod to see if they can detect any fault lines in the ground, or to ride up and down in the bosun chair (the sling that takes the real miners down into the mine), or have a lesson in how to make explosives to blast their way into the earth!
Lot 1993 Stuart Hwy, Coober Pedy; (08) 8672 3966 or 1800 196 500
■ The fun of loading up the blower which extracts dirt from underground and blows it out above ground.
Opal is Australia’s National Gemstone. Over 90 per cent of the world’s opals are mined in Australia – and most of them are found in Coober Pedy! No two opals are exactly the same. Black opals are the rarest and most valuable. The bright specks of colour stand out spectacularly against the dark background.
■ Tours operate four times daily.