Laverton

Granny Smith Gold Mine, Australian Geographic

Population 314

Surrounded by old mine workings and modern mines, Laverton is on the edge of the Great Victoria Desert. In 1900 Laverton was a booming district of gold strikes and mines, yet gold price fluctuations in the late 1950s made it almost a ghost town. In 1969 nickel was discovered at Mount Windarra, which sparked a nickel boom. Early in 1995 a cyclone blew through Laverton, leaving it flooded and isolated for three months. Mines closed down and supplies were brought in by air. During this time, locals held a 'wheelie bin' race from the pub to the sports club, which is now an annual event. Today the town has two major gold mines and one of the world's largest nickel-mining operations. Wildflowers are brilliant in season.

Visitor Information

Great Beyond Explorers Hall of Fame, Augusta St; (08) 9031 1361

www.laverton.wa.gov.au

Nearby towns

  • Leonora

    Leonora is the busy railhead for the north-eastern goldfields and the surrounding pastoral region. Mount Leonora was discovered in 1869 by...more

In Town

Historic buildings Restored buildings include the courthouse, the Old Police Station and Gaol, and the Mt Crawford Homestead. The original Police Sergeant's House is now the local museum with displays of local memorabilia. Contact visitor centre for details.

Great Beyond Explorers Hall of Fame: uses cutting-edge technology to bring to life the characters and stories of the early explorers of the region. It also houses the visitor centre; Augusta St.

Cross-Cultural Centre: houses the Laverton Outback Gallery, a collection of art and artefacts made and sold by the local Wongi people; Augusta St.

Nearby

Giles Breakaway: scenic area with interesting rock formation; 25km E.

Lake Carey: swimming and picnic spot exhibiting starkly contrasting scenery; 26km W.

Windarra Heritage Trail: walk includes rehabilitated mine site and interpretive plaques; Windarra Minesite Rd; 28km NW.

Empress Springs: discovered in 1896 by explorer David Carnegie and named after Queen Victoria. The spring is in limestone at the end of a tunnel that runs from the base of a 7m deep cave. A chain ladder allows access to the cave. Enclosed shoes and torch required; 305km NE.

Warburton: the Tjulyuru Arts and Culture Regional Gallery showcases the art and culture of the Ngaanyatjarraku people; 565km NE.

Golden Quest Discovery Trail: Laverton forms part of the 965km self-guided drive trail of the goldfields; book, map and CD available.

Outback Highway: travel the 1200km to Uluru from Laverton via the Great Central Rd. All roads are unsealed but regularly maintained.

Travellers note: Permits are required to travel through Aboriginal reserves and communities – they can be obtained from the Dept of Indigenous Affairs in Perth, and the Central Lands Council in Alice Springs. Water is scarce. Fuel, supplies and accommodation are available at the Tjukayirla, Warburton and Warakurna roadhouses. Check road conditions before departure at the Laverton Police Station or Laverton Shire Offices; road can be closed due to heavy rain.

Cafes & restaurants around town

The Desert Inn Hotel

A 12 hours’ drive north-east of Perth and a starting point to the Great Victoria Desert, Laverton has ghost-town status from its former gold-rush heydays. More recently known for its nickel, the area is being... Find out more


Campsites around town

Laverton Caravan Park

The Laverton caravan park is on the edge of the Great Victoria Desert. It has a good range of facilities, shady, grassed camping sites and the convenience of on-site accommodation. Explore the region’s... Find out more


Malcolm Dam camping area 98 km

Malcolm Dam camping area is a little oasis in the outback, with sites set in native bushland around the 1902 dam. Built to provide water for the outback trains, the dam is now a haven for birdlife and anglers. To get... Find out more


Niagara Dam camping area 126 km

Niagara Dam camping area is 60 km north-east of Menzies via the Goldfields Hwy and Kookynie Rd. An oasis in the outback, it embraces a large, shady area among the trees on the edge of the dam. Visitors can explore the... Find out more


Yeo Lake Homestead camping area 198 km

Yeo Lake Homestead is on the Anne Beadell Hwy, 213 km north-east of Laverton, 67 km east of Yamarna Station ruins and 167 km west of Neale Junction. Camping near the homestead provides basic facilities and a bit of... Find out more


Goongarrie Homestead camping area 200 km

Goongarrie Homestead camping area is 14 km west of the Menzies–Kalgoorlie Rd, 90 km north of Kalgoorlie. Use the homestead’s facilities while exploring this old pastoral property. Note: roads may be closed... Find out more


Wanjarri Shearing Shed camping area 219 km

Wanjarri Shearing Shed camping area is 16 km north-east of the Goldfields Hwy; the turn-off is 58 km north of Leinster. Camping around the trees gives visitors the use of the shearing-shed facilities while they explore... Find out more


Rowles Lagoon camping area 247 km

Rowles Lagoon camping area is 6 km north-east of Coolgardie North Rd, 68 km north of Coolgardie. It has shady sites and a good range of facilities on the edge of the lagoon for campers who enjoy aquatic activities by day... Find out more


Hotels, motels & B&Bs around town

Desert Inn Hotel & Motel

Once famous for its booming mining trade, nowadays Laverton has a reputation as being a frontier town, since it’s the last pub before you hit Alice Springs. The self-contained units at the family-owned Desert Inn... Find out more


What's on around town

Race Day: June.

Laverton Day and Wheelie Bin Race: Nov.

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