Port Augusta Tourist Attractions
The port and industrial town of Port Augusta (pop. 14,600) is a supply center for the outback areas of the state and the large sheep stations in the area and an important railroad junction, with direct connections to Perth, Sydney and Alice Springs. The economy of the town was given a great boost when the State Electricity Trust built a number of large power stations here. These are fuelled by coal from the opencast mines at Leigh Creek, 300km north, and generate more than a third of the state's electricity.On a Heritage Walk round the town visitors will see a number of fine buildings, including the Town Hall (1887), the Courthouse (1884) and above all St Augustine's Church, with beautiful stained glass. The Cudnatta Art Gallery is housed in the former railroad station.
Australian Arid Lands Botanic Gardens
The Australian Arid Lands Botanic Gardens display the surprisingly varied flora of the arid regions of Australia.Visitors can walk through the garden network and visit the Eremophila garden with possibly the largest collection of these desert-loving plants found anywhere.
Address: Box 202, Port Augusta, SA 5700, Australia
Opening hours: 9am-5pm; Sun: 10am-4pm; Sat: 10am-4pm
Always closed on: Christmas - Christian (Dec 25)
Entrance fee: FREE
Useful tips: Guided tours at 11am April to October. Guided tours at 9:30am November to March.
Guides: Guided tour available as optional extra.
Homestead Park Pioneer Museum
A particular tourist attraction is the Homestead Park Pioneer Museum which re-creates the life of pioneering days, with a blacksmith's shop, the pine-log Yudnappinna Homestead and an old steam train.
Wadlata Outback Centre
The Wadlata Outback Centre presents a picture of the outback, with its attractions and its hazards, which will be of particular interest to adventurous travelers contemplating an outback journey.
Royal Flying Doctor Service
On Vincent Street is the base of the Flying Doctor Service. Sightseeing flights are on offer at the flying school's airfield.
The area around Port Augusta features a wide variety of attractions.
Pichi Richi Pass Scenic Drive
Half an hour's drive northeast of Port Augusta is the Pichi Richi Pass Scenic Drive, which offers a magnificent scenic experience.
During the school holidays an old-time steam train runs from Woolshed Flat to the historic little town of Quorn (pop. 1100), northeast of Port Augusta. The town, a popular tourist center (hotels, motels, caravan/camping park), lies in a valley in the Flinders Ranges and was founded in 1878 as a station on the Great Northern Railway, which closed down in 1957. An old mill houses a museum of local history and an art gallery. North of the town are a number of ruined homesteads, relics of the days when wheat growing flourished in this area.
The wild and romantic Warren Gorge is a Mecca for rock climbers as is Buckaringa Gorge.
Opera in the Outback
On two occasions, in 1988 and 1997, the Flinders Ranges provided the setting for the spectacular open-air Opera in the Outback. The most recent of these music festivals took place in 2000 shortly after the Olympic Games. World-famous stars of opera and country music performed at Warren Gorge and other remarkable locations.It is now being offered annually.
There are breathtaking views from Hancock's Lookout.