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Trip Planner South Pacific  /  Australia  /  New South Wales  /  White Cliffs

White Cliffs

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Gift & Specialty Shops · National Parks · Landmarks
White Cliffs is a small town in outback New South Wales in Australia, in Central Darling Shire. White Cliffs is around 255 km northeast of Broken Hill, 93 km north of Wilcannia. At the, White Cliffs had a population of 103.The primary school opened in 1895, and has operated continuously since then. White Cliffs was one of the many places visited by Bill Bryson in research for the book In a Sunburned Country.HistoryThe town was established in the late 19th century when opal was discovered. Opal has been mined ever since. The first Australian opal was found 20 years before in Queensland in 1872, when a party of kangaroo hunters were operating in the White Cliffs area. One of them, who had left the party to track down a wounded kangaroo over some low stony hills, picked up a pretty stone which appealed to him. When taking back the stone, they suspected it could be opal which the local jeweller confirmed. He advised to get as much opal as possible since this could be more profitable than kangaroo hunting. When the group filed a claim, opal had not yet been listed under gemstones, and it was decided to file the claim under the "Gold Mining Act".Inhabitantspx|right|Entrance to PJ's B and B, White Cliffs, NSW Many of the residents live underground, using mining equipment to dig extensive homes in the hillside to avoid the intense heat outside. There are also two underground motels called The White Cliffs Underground and PJ's Bed And Breakfast, as the town is becoming more dependent on tourism.
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