Broken Hill, known as ‘The Silver City’, is the largest centre in Outback NSW and is often referred to as “The Jewel of the Outback”.
Located 1,160 km from Sydney, the city came into existence in 1885 after Charles Rasp recognized the mineral potential of the area two years earlier. Today the city sits on one of the world’s largest known silver-lead-zinc lodes – a deposit which is 7 km long and over 220 metres wide.
The city is large and prosperous. Over the years it has become the state’s premier desert centre known for its outstanding Outback artists, its rich indigenous culture, its wonderful Living Desert Reserve including the international stone sculptures (Sculpture Symposium), and its easy access to a rich diversity of desert landscapes.
No visit to Broken Hill is complete without spending time in the city’s excellent art galleries, walking down the main street and admiring the old hotels (one of which featured in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert) and gracious public buildings, visiting the Thankakali Aboriginal Arts and Crafts Centre, travelling out to the semi-ghost town of Silverton (where so many Australian films are shot) and going on a conducted tour of the town’s great mining complex and the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Strategically located, it is the ideal place to service all the needs of the Outback traveller and provide a base to explore the Darling River (The Darling River Run), Mutawintji and Kinchega National Park, and the Opal town of White Cliffs.
Broken Hill is also a transport hub allowing travellers to access Outback NSW by Rail (Country Link) and air (Rex). Broken Hill is ideally located to further explore the outback and some wonderful towns like Silverton. Located only 24 km from Broken Hill, Silverton has become a popular destination for both tourists and film crews.
The tourists come to experience a real ghost town and consequently there are a number of shops, art galleries, museums and pubs which have grown up to meet their needs. Its location (drive a few kilometres out of town to ‘The Breakers’ and marvel at the desert which stretches to the horizon) and its proximity to all the creature comforts of Broken Hill have ensured that it is popular with any film crew needing to shoot some desert and Outback scenes.
In fact the Silverton Hotel at the Burke St corner has been used in films as diverse as Wake in Fright, Mad Max 2, A Town Like Alice, Hostage, Razorback , Journey into Darkness and Golden Soak.
When you visit make sure you have a drink in the historic pub, visit the Silverton Pioneer Museum, stop off at the Gaol and Court House and inspect some of the local galleries.
Here is a true Outback experience and you can return to the comfort of Broken Hill feeling no pain or hardship at all.