The Golden Quest Discovery Trail is one of the most epic self drive routes in Australia. This 3 day adventure takes you through Kalgoorlie Boulder and Coolgardie, through the outback to Menzies, Leonora and Laverton - plus a host of other stops along the way. If you're spending time in Kalgoorlie, we highly recommend hitting the road and seeing some of the incredible sights along the trail - and if you have little ones with you, no fear! We've rounded up our favourite things to do with kids along the Golden Quest Discovery Trail.
1. Super Pit
This super-size attraction is impressive to adults, so imagine how it looks through the eyes of a child! You can’t visit Kalgoorlie without seeing Australia’s largest gold producing mine. You can either check it out from the viewing platform, or head on a tour to get down into the pit and really get a feel for just how big these vehicles are! The tour is suitable for kids over the age of 4.
2. Tram tour
Kids love trams, so take this as a sign to hop on the Kalgoorlie Boulder Tram Tour! Sit back and relax as you zip around town seeing the many sights and attractions of this historic twin city. Tours are available from Monday to Friday at 10 am and 1 pm and a Saturday tour at 10am. Tours depart from the Bus Stop on the side of the Kalgoorlie Boulder Visitor Centre (Kalgoorlie Town Hall) on Wilson Street. For more information and bookings, contact Kalgoorlie Boulder Visitor Centre on 08 9021 1966.
No visit to Kalgoorlie Boulder is complete without a visit to Hannans North Tourist Mine, where you will experience a vibrant mix of gold rush history and modern day mining. During your visit you can climb onto a giant 793C haul truck, stand in the shovel of a 994F loader, listen to Paddy Hannan tell his tale of discovery, pan for gold and try your hand at the legendary game of “Two-Up”.
4. Lake Ballard
Lake Ballard is about a 40 minute drive from Menzies and one of the highlights of the Golden Quest Discovery Trail. Your kids will love running around this huge salt lake, finding the 51 steel sculptures that call this place home. This is also a great camping spot, with toilets and camp fires for each site.
Historic Gwalia and Hoover House are located in Leonora, north of Kalgoorlie Boulder. You can grab an audio headset and take a self-guided tour of the museum, before heading into the “living museum” where kids will be fascinated as they’re able to explore old miner’s cottages and things people would have used before the mine closed. Marvel at the open cut mine, and head inside the historic Hoover House.
The town of Kookynie (population 12) is home to what just may be the world’s coolest pub. The pub is famous for its regular visitor, Willie the horse. Rescued from sure death after being found malnourished and alone, wandering the outback, Willie now tosses his mighty mane and occasionally deigns to accept pats, when he stops by the bar each afternoon waiting for dinner. Little ones will love seeing him arrive as they enjoy a spot of lunch!
7. Niagara Dam
This is a perfect place to enjoy a picnic lunch or set up camp for the night. Kids will love splashing in the water or just taking a walk around the perimeter.
If you're doing the entire Golden Quest Discovery Trail and make it to Laverton, make sure to stop into the Laverton Outback Gallery. The Gallery displays and sells art and craft made by local Wongatha people. Apart from the art, you can also browse the selection of wooden artefacts and boomerangs, hand painted emu eggs, woven baskets, hand dyed silk scarves and more. It’s the perfect place to learn about the local culture and for the kids to pick up a gift to take home with them.
9. Broad Arrow
Found roughly 30 minutes north of Kalgoorlie, Broad Arrow Tavern is a modern icon thanks to the scrawls on its walls. Whilst you’re no longer allowed to add to the writing on the wall, you can still enjoy a great afternoon at The Broady. This place dishes out some of the best burgers in WA, has a pool table for older kids and a playground out the back for little ones!