White Cliffs

White Cliffs has been an active opal mining town ever since the precious gemstone was first discovered here in the 1880s. This Outback NSW town is also famous for its cool, all-white underground dwellings and opal showrooms where you purchase locally mined jewels.

An easy drive on a sealed road from Wilcannia, White Cliffs is Australia's oldest commercial opal field. When mining first began, miners started building underground dwellings to escape the outback heat and most of the town still lives underground. Try it out at the White Cliffs Underground Motel.

A group underground on a Red Earth Opal Mine tour in White Cliffs

Time your visit with the White Cliffs Music Festival, held annually in May. This great family event brings together a wide variety of musical genres including many internationally acclaimed performers, and includes a poetry breakfast, street party, workshops and plenty of dancing.

Mutawintji National Park, a four-hour drive northwest, is home to many well-preserved Aboriginal rock art sites. You will also find the Old Coach Road drive, an historic route that follows a section of the Broken Hill to White Cliffs Coach Run that once connected the two Outback towns. Look out for the ruins of the Rockholes Hotel.

A Tri State Safaris tour guide showing Aboriginal rock art in Mutawintji National Park, near White Cliffs

Around an hour from White Cliffs, Paroo-Darling National Park is home to amazing birdlife and significant Aboriginal sites. Explore the Paroo Overflow, an area of outstanding natural beauty and conservation value, and the only unregulated river in the Murray-Darling Basin.

White Cliffs was also the site of Australia’s first solar power station, built in 1981 to provide power to the town. Located just outside the town, visit the mirror-plated collector discs stand out from their surroundings like spectacular science fiction props.