Goldfields, WA: Destination Guide

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Experience WA’s pioneering spirit for yourself along the gold rush trail.

Read on to discover the best things to see and do in the Goldfields or find and book accommodation near the Goldfields today.

About the WA Goldfields

The goldfields of WA a full of boomtowns and ghost towns, all of which offer an exciting insight into a fascinating period in Australia’s history. Experience heritage buildings, eerie ruins, world famous art, natural wonders and so much more.

Things to do at the WA Goldfields

History buffs will be in their element in the Goldfields of Western Australia. Visit a number of old gold mining towns – namely Menzies, Kookynie and Leonora – and get a taste of life during the gold rush. Immerse yourself in this fascinating and surprising region and absorb its many stories and treasures.

Attractions at the WA Goldfields

Inside Australia Sculpture

It’s the pairing of intriguing artwork and a strikingly beautiful landscape that lures travellers 51km west of Menzies to the site of artist Antony Gormley’s world-famous installation ‘Inside Australia’. Lake Ballard’s vast saltpan provides an inspiring outback canvas for Gormley’s 51 life-size figures that stand sentry over a massive 10km² portion of Lake Ballard and beckon walkers on to the flats to crunch along salt-crusted trails.

The art project, which was commissioned to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Perth International Arts Festival and created in 2003, brings a unique edge to the very isolated Lake Ballard, which extends 50km towards Menzies, one in a vast system of saltpans.

The Grand Hotel

Built in 1902, the Grand Hotel in Kookynie continues its long history of serving hot meals and cold ales to a handful of locals and the regular visitors who settle into the Grand’s caravan park. Kookynie in itself is fascinating to explore, with the streets still recalling its bustling gold rush heyday.

Niagara Dam

The dam’s concrete wall was a grand proposition in 1897: 18m high, spanning 225m and demanding vast camel loads of powdered cement to be transported from faraway Coolgardie. But soon after its completion, Niagara’s gold ran out, the township was deserted and artesian water discovered at nearby Kookynie made the dam utterly redundant.

Today, Niagara Dam provides an idyllic bush campground where you can fish, swim and take long walks with the birds. On those cold winter nights when many travellers find themselves exploring Western Australia’s usually arid inland pockets, Niagara Dam is a lovely place to be. With hot coals aglow, the camp oven simmering away and a glass of campfire-warmed red in hand, we sat beneath the stars, our solitude broken only by the distant howl of a dingo and the odd 4WD returning from a night at the Grand Hotel.

Getting to the WA Goldfields

Menzies is located 190km north of Kalgoorlie via the Goldfields Highway.

By car

From Perth, head north east along the Great Eastern Highway, turning left at Kalgoorlie onto the Goldfields Highway.

When to visit the WA Goldfields

Road trips around Menzies, Leonora and the rest of the Goldfields are most pleasant during the milder months, between April and September.

Where to stay near the WA Goldfields

For accommodation options in and around the WA Goldfields, click here.