QUEENSTOWN - a mining relic of a different kind. Forty-five minutes drive inland from Strahan one rounds a tree-lined bend for a first glimpse of Queenstown and the shock of what is on view raises the immediate thought: "Who did this terrible thing?" It is a nuclear landscape, its forest gone, the hillsides of its famous Mt Lyell bare and carved into geometrical forms where mining has moved the earth and its fumes have either poisoned the vegetation or burnt it in their furnaces.
The West Lyell open cut that used to be one of Australia's biggest copper mines closed in 1972. Today, only the underground operation continues but in a dramatically changed format. Now it burrows six kilometres underground, its smelter has followed the trees into the long-gone and its ore is cleanly exported to India with no further harm to the environment. To find out more about Queenstown's fascinating history and current mining practices take an underground tour of the mine (one of only three available tours in a working mine in the world) or an above ground tour.
Visit Things to See and Do for more details and check out Accommodation.
Queenstown Visitor Information
C/- The Galley Museum
1 - 7 Driffield Street, Queenstown. Tas. 7467
Tel: (03) 6471 1483
Fax: (03) 6471 1483
Open: 9.30am - 6pm Monday to Friday, 12.30pm - 6pm Saturday and Sunday (October - April). 9am - 5pm Monday to Friday, 1pm - 6pm Saturday and Sunday (May - September).
Closed: Christmas Day
B&B’s, backpackers, caravan park, hotels and motels, self-contained cabins, cottages and apartments. Advance bookings are strongly recommended all year. If you have not pre-booked accommodation and plan to stay overnight in Queenstown between December and April you are advised to ring in advance and secure accommodation prior to driving to Queenstown.
Self-contained motor homes and caravans can stay overnight at Lake Burbury, Composting toilets and BBQ facilities are accessible 24 hours.
Queenstown Library & Online Access Centre, Driffield Street, Queenstown.
Tel: (03) 6471 1946.
Banks & ATMs
ANZ Bank agency and ATM, Railway Express General Store, Queenstown.
Bendigo Bank and ATM, Orr Street, Queenstown.
Commonwealth Bank agency, Australia Post, 32 - 34 Orr Street, Queenstown.