Coober Pedy is a small underground city in the central part of the Australian state of South Australia.
Coober Pedy is located on the Stewart Ridge in South Australia, at the eastern edge of the Great Victoria Desert. .This is one of the most deserted and sparsely populated areas in Australia. But the real life of the city goes underground, where more than one and a half thousand people are hiding from the heat – the miners of precious opals.
Initially, this place was called the “Opal Field at the Stewart Ridge”, but after they began to actively mine opal in 1915, the Australian aborigines called it Kupa Piti (kupa piti), which means “white man’s hole”. Since the miners were foreigners, an anglicized version of this phrase soon appeared – Coober Pedy.
Another peculiarity of the locality is that everything in the city is underground, such as houses, shops, hotels, bars, art galleries and even churches. This is because the so-called “dugouts” are for residents to escape the sweltering heat of the desert..The design of housing underground is not much different from the usual interiors , Conditions were harsh and the environment was not conducive to an easy life. Water and provisions had to be transported far and in very difficult conditions. Even with the introduction of very large underground water reservoirs, the situation improved only marginally, with the right to water only 24 gallons (60 liters) per week.
For more than a decade, this mysteriously strange settlement has been attracting crowds of tourists. Every year, a huge number of people who are interested not only in the beauty of precious stones that are mined here as before, but also in the incomprehensible life of people of this remote strange underground city.
Access : Coordinates:-29.011111, 134.755556 / To get from Adelaide to Coober Pedy, you have to travel 850 kilometers north on the Stuart Highway.
/ Coober Pedy is located roughly halfway between Adelaide and Alice Springs and has become a popular stopover and tourist destination, especially since 1987 when the Stuart Highway is fully paved.
- Coober Pedy has been the “world capital of opal production” for more than 100 years; about 30% of the earth’s supply of this mineral is concentrated in it.
- Much of the interest in Coober Pedy is underground – cemeteries and underground churches ( Churches The Serbian Orthodox Church is bored out of solid rock ). And now there are very few of them – greens are represented mainly by cacti brought from different parts of the world. The town has local “rolling grass” golf courses – golfers line small pieces of “turf” around for a first shot.
A typical home has three bedrooms, a living room, a kitchen and a bathroom. The deepest are the bedrooms and living rooms – at the level of 2.5–6 m below the ground. To prevent the ceiling from collapsing, it is propped up with powerful columns up to 1 m thick.
- The first tree ever seen in the village is in scrap metal and is still planted on a hill overlooking the village. / the Umoona Opal Mine & Museum.
- Faye’s Underground Home / Tom’s Working Opal Mine / Big Winch.
- The local golf course, most often frequented at night by players using lighted balls to avoid daytime temperatures,
- The city itself is the filming location for The Secret of Kelly-Anne, released in 2005 , The Amazing Race TV series. Chris Ryan’s Wildfire book is about Coober Pedy, but writes that there are only three buildings on the surface and the rest of the city is underground. INXS’s Kiss The Dirt (Falling Down the Mountain) music video was shot on Moon Plain. The city plays a central role in Wim Wenders’ film Until the World’s End (1991). Μovies were shot here for The Secret of Kelly-Anne, released in 2005. The backcountry, notably the Breakaways and Moon Plain, are the star backdrops of films like Mad Max: Beyond the Dome of Thunder, Red Planet, Desert Mad Priscilla, Pitch Black and Blood of the Heroes who have widely used the locals as extras.
- Coober Pedy hosted the second season of The Amazing Race.
- The crashed space ship of Coober Pedy : This is the crashed spaceship from the movie Pitch Black. The film was filmed on location in the desert, 200-300 km from Coober Pedy.
- The large winch : Big Winch Lookout. This 8-meter structure overlooking the city was built by Klaus Wirries in the 1970s in honor of the World Capital of Opal. The large winch was rebuilt after it was destroyed by fire in 1986.
Activities : sightseeing / photo opportunities, The stars The night sky in the Outback has to be seen especially on a moonless night. / trekking,Coober Pedy is included in many hiking trails in Australia / Old and partly still active opal mines can be visited./ There is also a “Public Noodling Area” where anyone who wants can dig for opals.
Go next : Not far from Coober Pedy is the Lunar Plain, which strongly resembles a lunar landscape. / Alice Springs is the heart of Central Australia / Chambers Pillar Historical Reserve / MacDonnell Ranges / Ewaninga Conservation Reserve.