Ilya Genkin Fine Art Landscape Photography, Travel Photography

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Cobar Photos

New South Wales (NSW), Australia


Cobar is a town in central western New South Wales, Australia. It is located 712 km (442 miles) northwest of Sydney. It is at the crossroads of the Kidman Way (to Queensland) and Barrier Highway (to South Australia). The town and the Local Government Area, the Cobar Shire, are on the eastern edge of the Australian outback. The name Cobar is derived from the Aboriginal Ngiyampaa word Kuparr, Gubarr or Cuburra, meaning 'red earth' or 'burnt earth', the ochre used in making body paint for Corroborees. It has also been suggested, but it is less likely, that the name may represent an Aboriginal attempt to pronounce the word 'copper'.

Cobar has a lot of tourist attractions that reflect the town's mining and rural background. From the Great Cobar Copper Mine to the rugged beauty of our outback landscape, Cobar has plenty to offer to history and nature lovers.

One must-see is the Great Cobar Heritage Centre with its collection of interesting exhibits focusing on the town's mining, agricultural and Aboriginal history. The Centre is the starting point for the Cobar Heritage Walk, which takes in many grand old buildings and other points of interest such as the Cobar Miners' Heritage Park. The Great Cobar Heritage Centre was originally built in 1910 as the administration building for the Great Cobar Copper Mine.

Just across the road from the Heritage Centre is the Cobar Mining Heritage Park. It was created to commemorate the miners who lost their lives throughout Cobar's mining history.

The Great Cobar Copper Mine, which was founded in 1870, was one of the world's largest mining and processing operations in its day. Its main mine shafts run to 430 metres and are now fenced off, south of the Heritage Centre. The remains of the smelter foundations are visible from the top of the hill, east of the Heritage Centre.

The Great Cobar Open Cut was originally a 150 metre deep open-cut mine, but is now a popular local swimming hole. The Great Cobar Open Cut was created more than a century ago using picks and shovels and horse and cart. Men removed rock from this quarry to be used as backfill for the underground mine stopes using the cut and fill method.

Just a few kilometres east of Cobar, visitors can get a panoramic view of the town and the New Cobar Open Cut Gold Mine at Fort Bourke Hill. A viewing on platform overlooks the open pit of the Peake Gold Mine and the entrance to the underground mine. Fort Bourke Hill is 300 metres above sea level and Cobar's mineral belt becomes obvious as you line up the head-frames running north to south.