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- Last Updated: 17 October 2018 17 October 2018
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Destination Partner - Lightning Ridge
Travelling through this vast land, one often discovers places that envelope the soul with tangible elements; a beautiful river, majestic native forests, indigenous culture, or unspoiled pristine beaches.
Every now and again though, one can come across a place where the same feeling is experienced without any tangible elements to account for that feeling. Lightning Ridge, home of the unique Black Opal, is one of those places!
This wonderful side-trip from the Darking River Run will take you to the iconically (and nicely eccentric) Australian Opal mining town of Lightning Ridge. Whether you are looking for the famous Black Opal, wanting to explore some wonderful galleries or just take in the experiences of a mining town, 'The Ridge' is a must.
An easy drive to and from Walgett. As an alternate route, there is a nice drive via Cumborah to Brewarrina.
There are very few places in the Australian outback as unique as Lightning Ridge with its welcoming eccentricity; from the minute you arrive, the locals make you feel like are part of this wonderful town.
Accommodation Partner - Lorne Station
A Ridge Icon!
No bells and whistles. Just pure country hospitality. Award Winning Accommodation
Powered & Unpowered Sites, Bunk Houses, Communal Kitchen, Fire Ring, Pet Friendly. Entertainment around the fire to embrace the beauty and serenity of the great outback.
Inside tips looking for opal, talk to the locals to help you on your way
It is so welcoming that most of the residence tell a similar story of visiting ‘the Ridge’ years ago and staying there. It is one of those places.
The Ridge has a unique bunch of characters out there and they pride themselves on being different; it is something about the pioneering spirit that allowed this area to nurture this character in not only its residence, but also what it offers the visitor.
You can experience sculptures underground, bottle-houses, antique lamps, castles, astronomy monuments, unique gardens, hills named 'Lunatic', 'Pig' and Bald', a pub crawl to 'The Pub in the Scrub', 'The Glengarry Hilton' and 'Sheepyard', and even tour underground mines.
And how do you find all these thing? Just look out for a colored car door.
Make sense? Thought not...it will when you visit the Ridge....
Walgett <> Lighning Ridge
Distance = 78.0 km - about 54 mins (one way)
Castlereagh Hwy <> Bill Obrien Way (Sealed Highway)
Brewarrina <> Lightning Ridge (Via Cumborah)
Distance = 180km - about 3 hrs
Castlereagh Hwy <> Cumborah-Lightning Ridge Rd <> Walgett Goodooga Rd <> Narran Lake Rd <>Kamilaroi Hwy