Relaxing day at Broken Hill

Don’t you love a relaxing day? We had one those on our last day in Broken Hill. We all enjoyed a sleep in and spent the morning catching up on washing, cleaning our RV’s, reading and generally enjoying the warm sunshine. It was a glorious day at Broken Hill with hardly a cloud in the blue sky.

Pa decided he was going to have a reading day and was quite happy to be left at camp while the rest of us piled into ENNY (Katie’s 4×4) and set off to town. Riley and I were dropped off at the Mining & Minerals Museum while Katie, Ben & Maddie hit the shops looking for stuff for the van. The museum is housed in an historic building owned by the Broken Hill Council. The building was a Bond Store built in 1892.

Riley and I spent an hour or so exploring the great little museum which has excellent displays of all the minerals found in the Broken Hill area. There is a short video that shows the history of our planet and the formation of the rich Line of Lode, as the ore seam is called in Broken Hill. It took millions of years to create this wealth just waiting for someone to find it.

The displays include a 42kg nugget of silver. It’s huge! Many of the minerals found in Broken Hill are some of the best examples found anywhere in the world.

The museum is the home of the Silver Tree. This incredible sculpture is made entirely from silver and depicts the story of Charles Rasp who discovered ore in Broken Hill and thus began mining in the area.

I do recommend a stop at this little museum when in Broken Hill. The entry fee is a donation. Well worth it.

Katie, Ben & Maddie were still shopping so Riley and I wandered down the street to visit the Sufi book shop. What a fascinating store. It is full of books about Islam and Sufism, spirituality, health & well-being, Philosophy and poetry, incense & essential oils, clothing and middle eastern rugs and tapestries. They even sell Hookah pipes. While there a man came in and asked the assistant how to get to the mosque and she gave him directions. He also asked about Halal stores in Broken Hill. He was directed to the Sufi Bakery and told to check with them.

Fabulous mural on the Sufi Book Store

Katie picked us up and our next port of call, after a visit to the hardware store and a quick stop at the Reject Shop, was to Bells Milk Bar. Bells Milk Bar is Australia’s longest running milk bar and walking in the door is like stepping back in time to the 1950’s. What a gem of a place. We all had milkshakes and a ham & cheese toastie for our lunch The children all declared the place ‘awesome’.

The milk bar started life in 1892 as Fenton’s Confectioner & Cordial Maker. It was renovated in 1938 and became Bells Milk Bar. It was further renovated in 1956 and it is pretty much the same today. Definitely put this one on your list of things to do in Broken Hill. The milkshakes are delicious.

Across the road from the milk bar is a playground and the kids enjoyed a half hour play there. I took the opportunity to call the Steamtown Historic Railway in Peterborough and book us all in for their award winning Sound & Light Show for the next evening.

Back at camp we found Rich still reading his book. He’d had a lovely quiet day. We cooked a leg of lamb in Katies Weber and I did the veggies in the motorhome. Yum, who loves a lamb roast? We followed it up with a fresh fruit salad so we could use up most of our fruit before we cross the border into SA. What we didn’t eat we would try to give away to other travellers.

That ends our stay in Broken Hill. We plan to head off in the morning and get to Peterborough. First thing though we will use the dump point then go into town for fuel and a gas bottle. We filled up with water before going to bed and packed up our chairs, table and awnings. We were all ready to continue our journey.


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