YowaH TOW N
HOME OF THE RENOWNED ‘YOWAH OPAL NUT’
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100km to Eulo 3km to Airport
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yowah Town Map
LEGEND EMERGENCY SERVICES
Royal Flying Doctor Service Visiting Clinic
Public Toilets FREE Camping Area Dump Point
PLACES OF INTEREST 1 2 3 4
The Bluff Lookout Fossicking area Yowah Artesian Bore Baths YOMCSI – Yowah Opal Miners Community
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Golf Course Tennis Courts Artesian Waters Caravan Park Bore Baths
RTC – Rural Transaction Centre 9 Blue Wren Café 10 Tom Fagan Park 8
Welcome to yowah Meet the community where the opal is king and most of the residents are small-scale miners. Discover the story of Australia’s national gem, the opal. Fossick for opals and join a whole host of local activities while you are in town.
Top things to do in Yowah Test your skills on the 9 hole golf course • Fossick for opals in the public fossicking area Explore the ‘living gallery’ of wonderful opal displays • Drive to ‘The Bluff’ for sunset views and stone art creations • Place a bet on the bore drain duck race • Soak up the benefits of Artesian waters with a hot bore bath • Spot local birdlife on a locally guided tour THAT’S NOT A ROCK Discover the story of Australia’s national gem in Yowah. Spend a few days exploring this ‘living gallery’ with its distinctive opal galleries dotted around the town. The main attraction for this area is the unique Yowah Nut. You guessed it, the opal is formed naturally like a nut and many visitors would disregard them as simply a rock. Experienced opal miners will often crack open thousands of nuts to find gem colour. These regularly sell for thousands of dollars. While in Yowah, you can try your hand at fossicking in an area adjacent to town. ART AT SUNSET For a spectacular sunset, you simply must visit ‘The Bluff.’ The 150-metre rise is only a few kilometres from town and offers 180 degree views of the surrounding country. If you can draw your eyes away from the view you’ll notice piles of stones everywhere. This ‘stone art’ has become a popular activity for visitors to the area, so make sure you add your own before you leave.
THE LOCAL TOUCH Back in town you may fancy a round of golf? The local course offers an open-air clubhouse, sandy greens and fairways. Then meet the locals at the community fireside barbeque. If you are in town on a Saturday, then be sure to head to the Tailgaters Stall open 10am – 2pm during tourist season. Expect to be awed by the range of opals and locally produced craft on sale.
SPA ANYONE? Round off your day with a relaxing soak in a hot Artesian Bore Bath at the ‘Artesian Waters Caravan Park’. Or, if you like a few more bubbles, then head to the Yowah Artesian Spa. There are two pools, the first warmer than the second. What’s not to love about a good bath at the end of the day? Invigorate your body and soul in these naturally heated mineral waters listening to the sounds of the Outback.
P.S. live like a local
the start of yoWAH The origins of the name ‘Yowah’ have long been forgotten. However, it was named because of the nearby Yowah Creek. Around 1875 Cobb & Co had a change station at the creek. Although there are no documents, it is generally accepted that the Yowah opal field was discovered by a Mr. Rossiter. Mr. Rossiter was the manager of the registered mine on the Yowah Creek. It was registered in Charleville on 1st September 1884 for 21 years at a cost of 10 pounds per annum. The Southern Cross Mine was owned by a syndicate which was led by Mr Herbert Bond. The first 5x3 chain claims were pegged on the 4th October 1897. By this time miners were beginning to spread to Duck Creek, Sheep Station Creek and the Black Gate fields. The miners lived about four miles SE of where the present town is situated. Building began here around 1912 when the first Government bore was sunk. Yowah is situated on the grazing property ‘Moolya’ which is owned by Mr Tom Fagan. The miners lived a rough and solitary life under the stars or in tents or bush huts. They had to carry their water for five miles from Sheep Station Creek. Whenever there was a severe drought they had to leave the area until it rained. 4
To sell their opals the miners had to wait for a buyer or take it away to sell. The illustrious ‘Eulo Queen’ was a well known buyer and ‘a friend to miners’. Due to the water shortage, it wasn’t until the 1960s that there were permanent residents in Yowah. You’ve heard of the Yowah Nut, With the Fiery Opal Flame? Now I’ll tell you the story Of how Yowah got its name It was about the 1880s, Or the 90’s at the latest, When brothers Bill and George, Were travelling Queensland’s far South West.
---------------FROM ‘THE TALE OF YOWAH’ BY JIMMY STEVENS
Town Walk While you are visiting the great opal field of Yowah take one of our heritage walks. There are many historic sites and see how the miners lived. Spend some time with a local and listen to the yarns of yesteryear. The walks are well marked and all begin and end at the Tom Fagan Park.
Yowah Bore The Great Artesian Basin provides water for much of inland Australia, Yowah being one of these towns. Stretching over 1,700,000 square kilometres and covering 1/5th of Australia, the Great Artesian Basin is the largest aquifer in the world. With a temperature of water throughout the Basin varying from between 30 to 100 degrees Celsius the basin makes a great resource for fresh baths and spas. A bore drain meanders through the centre of Yowah and you are encouraged to follow the Bore Drain Walk where the water flows into a man-made dam, perfect for a barbeque or a swim. This can also be accessed by car via the airport road. Underground pipes provide the Artesian water to the town. This bore is essential to Yowah’s existence. -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The Bluff A viewing spectacle from all angles is ‘The Bluff’. Overlooking the Yowah township and the surrounding area, with wildlife rampant and totems placed strategically, the Bluff is a perfect place to sit and enjoy a picnic, do some bird watching, relax and reflect or take in the breathtaking sunrises and sunsets. A definite must do when in Yowah.
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flora and fauna of Yowah Located in the middle of a cattle station, this small town has everything you could ever need including one of the smallest state schools in Australia as well as every outback animal you could imagine. Seeing cows roaming through town is not a rarity, after all this town is located in their home. You may see them taking a leisurely stroll or scratching on a lonely post. Kangaroos and emus can be seen roaming around the town. What a wonderful sight to see native wildlife in their bush environment. Please remember to treat these natives in awe, with respect and from afar.
BIRD WATCHING IN YOWAH Throughout the town wildlife is in abundance, creating the perfect habitat for wildlife viewing and bird watching, with tours available. Some of our local birds include brolgas, blue wrens, bustards, apostle birds and corellas.
Yowah opal festival The Yowah Opal Festival is an annual event held on the third weekend in July. This two day event starting Friday evening not only showcases opals, gem stones and crafts but also has activities to make the two days as fun-filled as possible. EVENTS INCLUDE: • Opal displays and stalls • Yowah designer jewellery competition • Live music and entertainment • Guest speakers • Raffles • BBQs and meals • Licensed Bar As well as the attractions Yowah has to offer all year round. Information and stall bookings – please contact YOMCSI 0476 419 211
The town of Yowah, although built on a cattle station, can be said it is in fact built on Opal and Opal Mining, with a free fossicking area in town and privately owned mines out behind the town. Yowah is an incredible place to look for, learn about and see the spectacle and natural miracle that are Yowah Opals. Within Yowah itself many types of opals are found, and special to us is the Yowah Nut, an ironstone encased opal.
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yomcsi Yowah Opal Mining Community Services Incorporated – Harlequin Drive. YOMCSI provide community dinners and open bar every Saturday night – visitors welcome. In the winter, dinners and open bar are every Wednesday and Saturday evenings from 5pm. • Wednesday Carpet Bowls 3pm • Tuesday Craft Group 10am
SATURDAY’S TAILGATERS STALL 10AM – 2PM Expect to be awed by the range of opals and locally produced craft on sale. Phone 0476 419 211
the royal flying doctors The first Flying Doctor to come to Yowah from Charleville was Dr. Tim O’Leary. In 1976 the miners built a medical room which housed the HF radio and the medical chest. This is now in the town library. A spectacular event is when the Royal Flying Doctor Service would practise night 8
landings, with the headlights of cars being used to light the air strip. The first regular patrons were Anglican Bush Brothers who flew into Yowah and then rode a mini bike around the field.
Artesian Waters Caravan Park The Artesian Waters Caravan Park is a great spot for visitors to stop and spend the night. With six cabins, 35 powered sites, an amenities block and laundry, this caravan park is comfortable, affordable and accommodating. With an adjoining coffee shop, mini mart, post office, petrol station, communal area and Artesian baths to relax and watch the stars, this place has almost everything you could ever need.
DUCKS AND DINNER Be sure to include the Thursday night Dinner and Duck Race in your itinerary. It’s held during tourist season at the Artesian Waters Caravan Park. You’ll enjoy a three-course dinner and the chance to bet on the unique bore drain duck race. This event raises money for the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Phone 07 4655 4953
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Yowah Artesian Bore Baths After a long day of mining, exploring, fossicking or just enjoying taking in the sites of Yowah, the best thing to do is relax. And the best way to relax in Yowah is by enjoying a hot Artesian pool or two. With two pools, the first warmer than the second, these pools, which are cleaned daily, are the perfect spot for relaxation and enjoying the serenity as the sound of the naturally heated water from the Artesian Basin falls from the mining hoist.
Rural Transaction Centre Yowah’s RTC is not only the Visitor Information Centre but is also the home of The Yowah Nut Café, a museum/gallery, library, internet café, laundry and accommodation. With hospitality in the air, the RTC can help you with almost anything you could ever desire or need. With a large deck out the front housing multiple chairs and tables, it is more than likely you will see a familiar, friendly face. The Yowah Nut Café has a wide selection of deliciously fresh cooked meals and snacks. Phone 07 4655 7011 10
Opened in August of 2014, the community and volunteer operated pools are kept between 34 and 41 degrees Celsius and open daily for your enjoyment.
directory ACCOMMODATION, FUEL & GROCERIES Artesian Waters Caravan Park & Motel + ATM P 07 4655 4953 Free Camping Area + Toilets/ Showers
Rural Transaction Centre Library, Internet and Café P 07 4655 7011
Royal Flying Doctor Service P 07 4654 1443
YOMCSI P 0476 419 211 Blue Wren Café P 0427 581 802 TOURS Bird Watching Tours P 07 4655 4909
GALLERIES & OPAL SHOPS There are many galleries and opal shops in Yowah as you explore the streets. If you see an ‘opals for sale’ sign, drop in and have a browse.
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T: 07 4655 8470 WWW.CUNNAMULLATOURISM.COM.AU