Free things to do in Broken Hill

Free Things To Do Broken Hill | Travel Guide

Broken Hill is NSW iconic outback heritage listed mining city. Today it is a must do destination with plenty of things to do in Broken Hill attracting those interested in its outback location, its mining and local history. There is also a strong culture Australian of art with the most well-known being the Pro Hart gallery Broken Hill.

Australia’s longest running mining town, Broken Hill is located near the South Australia border and shares the same time zone. The city is named after a particular hill that was on the local landscape but mining saw the hill mined away. 

The first nations people Wiljakali were nomadic due to the lack of permanent water in the area. The Wiljakali were able to continue their traditional lifestyle for longer than groups towards the east due to the time to it took European settlement to spread across Australia. Sadly in the 1880s they were forced due to threatening starvation as settlements and mines opened on their hunting grounds to join the mine and other workforces. 

Our time in Broken Hill was filled with much more to do and see than we had anticipated. There were many highlights but probably the most unforgettable was the dust storm that rolled in late one afternoon literally turning day into a red night.

Dust Storm at Camp Site

Broken Hill attractions to keep the budget traveller interested is varied and many. We have complied an extensive list of (mostly) free things to do in Broken Hill as well as where to camp for free or low cost. Dog friendly attractions are labelled with a 🐾.

Art Galleries

Broken Hill Regional Art Gallery

Opening in 1904 in the historic Sully’s Emporium built in 1885, Broken Hill Regional Art Gallery is the oldest gallery in regional NSW. Located in the centre of town the gallery has both permanent and temporary exhibitions by local and visiting artists. It is well worth a visit.

Opening Hours: Tuesday – Sunday 10am – 4pm. Closed Mondays

Admission: Gold coin donation

Address: 404 – 408 Argent Street, Broken Hill

Pro Hart Gallery and Sculpture Park

Born Kevin Charles Hart, “Pro Hart” is one of Australia’s most well recognised artists. His artworks are varied in subject, style and medium. Probably his most well known subjects were his dragonflies and his paintings telling the stories of life as a miner.
The Pro Hart Gallery is located in what was his home. There are his artworks on display including a painted Roles Royce and sculptures across the road. If you are interested to learn more about the man himself there is a 45 minute video playing on a loop you can watch. 
Mr Hart was an interesting and talent artist. His gallery run by his family is also worth a visit

Opening Times: Monday – Saturday 9am – 5pm, Sunday 10am – 5pm. Closed Public Holidays

Gallery Admission: Adult $5, Concession $3, Child free Sculpture Park Admission: Free

Address: 108 Wyman Street, Broken Hill

Amanya Mitha Indigenous Art Gallery

Displaying and selling indigenous artworks including paintings, wood carvings. The artist in residence is Clinton Kemp from the Dieri people in South Australia.  

Opening Times: Wednesday 9.30am – 2.30pm, Thursday and Friday 9.30am – 4pm, Saturday 10.30am – 1.30pm. Closed Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

Admission: Free

Address: 76 Gypsum Street, Broken Hill

Julie Hart Gallery

Julie, the daughter of Pro Hart is an accomplished artist in her own right. Her artworks are often in demand and fetch good prices which is telling of her talent. 

Opening Hours: Wednesday to Saturday 9.30am – 5pm. Sunday 10am – 2pm.

Admission: Free

Address: 65 Williams Street, Broken Hill

Absalom Gallery

Jack is the artist in residence at this gallery. He is in his 90s and his artworks are of the Australian outback.

Opening Times: Monday to Friday 10am – 4pm. Closed January and February.

Admission: Free

Address: 634 Chapple Street, Broken Hill

Bush ‘N’ Beyond Studio Gallery

A small gallery displaying the works of award winning artists Wendy Martin and Ian Lewis. Both paint landscapes as well as other subjects that interest them in mediums such as oils, pastels and watercolour. Wendy also makes and sells handmade jewellery.

Opening Times:

Admission: Free

Address: 4 Argent Street, Broken Hill

General Interest

Broken Hill Visitor Information Centre

The information centre run by volunteers has amenities useful to the travellers including hot showers ($5), drinking water, a dump point and information on local attractions.

Broken Hill Heritage Walking Tour 🐾 also runs from the information centre. The walk is 2 hour guided tour of Broken Hill’s main city centre provided by volunteers and is a terrific way to learn about the local history and hear some local stories. 

Opening Times: Information Centre Monday to Friday 8.30am – 5pm. Walking Tours depart at Monday to Friday at 10am.

Admission: Free

Address: Cnr Blende & Bromide Streets, Broken Hil

Flying Doctors Visitor Centre

Bruce Langford Visitor Centre | Royal Flying Doctor Base

The centre has an interesting display and short videos telling the history of the service. Also included with your ticket is a guided tour which tells you what services the flying doctors provide, how emergencies are managed and how funding is sourced. 
It is free to visit the visitor centre and check out the displays. There is a fee for the guided tour but all the money goes directly towards the running of the vital service which is very much needed as government funding (disappointingly) only covers around 50% of the operational costs.

Opening Times: Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm. Weekends 10am-4pm.

Admission: Free to visit. Guided tours are Adult $12.50, Concession $10, Child $6

Address: Airport Road, Broken Hill

Solar Farm

Solar Plant 🐾

677000 solar panels in one solar farm makes for impressive viewing. There is now a sheltered public viewing platform with information boards about the plant and solar power.

Opening Times: 9am – 4pm

Admission: Free

Address: 724 Barrier Highway, Broken Hill

The Big Red Chair

The Big Red Chair | Big Things 🐾

It is exactly a big chair, like one you’d see in a park, painted red. We are lead to believe in the past you could sit on the chair, no longer unfortunately.
The chair is located in the Lode Memorial car park.

Opening Times: 24/7

Admission: Free

Address: Federation Way, Broken Hill

Pro Hart | Big Ant

The Big Ant | Big Things 🐾

The Big Ant is a Pro Hart sculpture built in 1980. It now stands in the Kintore Reserve in Broken Hill along with other sculptures.

Opening Times: 24/7

Admission: Free

Address: Beryl Street, Broken Hill

Library and City Archives

The library is a source of resources useful to travellers including internet access, power for recharging devices and computers. Also in school holidays there are activities which your children may be interested in joining in for something different.
The library also holds the city’s archives including items such as diaries, photos, old newspapers and so on. An interesting collection for anyone interested in the local history or even searching family history if your family has any connections to the area.

Opening Times: Monday to Thursday 10am – 6pm, Friday 10am – 5pm, Saturday 10am – 1pm. 

Admission: Free 

Address: 245 Blende Street, Broken Hill

Historic Buildings and Museums

Albert Kersten Mining and Minerals Museum

A geological science museum with interesting displays on the history and geology of Broken Hill. There is 10 minute informative film on creation of minerals, a 8.5kg Silver Tree Table Centrepiece and many other items on display to check out. 

Opening Times: Monday to Saturday 10am – 4pm

Admission: Gold coin donation

Address: Cnr Crystal and Bromide Streets, Broken Hill

Synagogue

Synagogue of the Outback Museum and Titanic 

This historic synagogue has a small but impressive collection of religious memorbilia including a painted Star of David on its ceiling. 

Run by volunteers with a wealth of knowledge about the local history it is worth visiting. The collection of pieces to do with the Titanic out the back is also interesting.

Opening Times: Monday, Wednesday and Sunday 10am – 3pm

Admission: Free or gold coin donation appreciated

Address: 165 Wolfram Street, Broken Hill

Mining and Historic Sites

Line of Lode Miners Memorial

Line of Lode Miners Memorial

A memorial and moving tribute to miners who have lost their lives on the job in Broken Hill. Each tribute says the name of the miner, age, date of his death and how he died. It is a somber place with the youngest listed a boy just 12 years old.

The memorial, high on the hill on city’s backdrop, is now a distinct feature of the mining town. Views from platform are if back over the town and its surrounding landscape.

In the carpark is also some old mining machinery to see and the Big Red Chair. To get to the memorial it is necessary to walk through the cafe.

Opening Times: All week 9am – 5pm

Admission: Free

Address: Federation Way, Broken Hill

Picnic Train Ambush Site

Picnic Train Ambush Site 🐾

Recorded as the site of Australia’s first terrorism attack and the only foreign attack on Australian soil during WW1 in 1915. The ambush, under a Turkish flag, saw 6 shot and killed and another 7 wounded.

Opening Times: 24/7

Admission: Free

Address: Picton Sale Yard Road, Broken Hill

Junction Mine

Junction Mine and Lookout 🐾

An old abandoned mine site, the historic Headframe and other mining structures and equipment makes this an interesting place to visit. There are information boards about the mine. 

It is also a great spot for photos and has views of the town.

Opening Times: 24/7

Admission: Free

Address: 4604 Menindee Road, Broken Hill

Syndicate of Seven 🐾

Syndicate of Seven name given to original members of Broken Hill mining company back in 1883. The sculptures by Geoff De Main commentate these men and tells the stories of the men and the beginnings of the company. 

Opening Times: 24/7

Admission: Free

Address: LOT 5916 Blende Street, Broken Hill

Kintore Headframe

Historic Kintore Headframe 🐾

This is a historic top of a mine frame located in a park across the road from the Visitor Information Centre.

Opening Times: 24/7

Admission: Free

Address: 51 Bromide Street, Broken Hil

At the Palace Hotel

The Palace Hotel

Built in 1889 this iconic outback pub is famous for its appearance in the movie Priscilla Queen of the Desert. This charming and quirky pub has everything you would typically expect a pub to have drinks, food, live music and accommodation. It is also the only venue that is permitted to host Two Up any day of the year outside of a casino. According to their website Two Up is played Fridays from 9pm.

The other reason to visit The Palace is the murals that adorn most of its walls and ceilings. Most are painted by indigenous artist Gordon Waye of Australian landscapes and other subjects.

It is free to go into the pub to check out the murals and the display in the front foyer about the Priscilla movie. We stayed for a drink each, something we could afford to on budget. 

Opening Times: Monday to Wednesday 3pm – 12am, Thursday to Sunday 12pm – 12am

Admission: Free

Address: 227 Argent Street, Broken Hill

Afghan Mosque

Afghan camel drivers or cameleers as they were also known where instrumental is opening up the Australian outback to western settlements. Theirs is a history we don’t often hear about but that is different here at the Afghan Mosque in Broken Hill. The Mosque built around 1891 is actually a rather understated building, it is what you can learn from the people that now run its museum that make it worth seeing.

Opening Times:

Admission: Gold coin donation

Address: 715 William Street, Broken Hill

Titanic Memorial 🐾

Located in the Stuart Park Reserve is a memorial to the bandsmen that played on the ill fated Titanic sunk. Why a memorial in Broken Hill? The story goes that locally there were hundreds of brass players who were moved by the bravery of the players on Titanic that they wanted to honour and remember them. The memorial was opened in April 1913 one year after the tragedy.

Opening Times: 24/7

Admission: Free

Address: Wolfram Street, Broken Hill

Reserves and Lookouts

Joe Keenan Lookout 🐾

In honour of Peter Joseph Keenan a major contributor to the local trade union. The lookout views show observers the size and layout of Broken Hill. A great spot to watch a sunrise, have a picnic and learn a little about the local history with information plaques on site.  

Opening Times: 24/4

Admission: Free

Address: Marks Street, Broken Hill

Mountain Bike Riding  🐾

A series of tracks for mountain bike riders to enjoy and test your skills. Tracks are described as “rocky” and are sometimes used by people to walk their dogs. 

Opening Times: 24/4

Admission: Free

Address: Racecourse Road, Broken Hill

Zinc Lake | Perilya Park 🐾

A lovely lake and park area with wide open lush green grass this park has play equipment, ducks to feed, beautiful swans and kangaroos. It is a popular picnic spot and a bit of an oasis against the usual back drop of the areas mines and desert landscape.

Opening Times: Daylight hours

Admission: Free

Address: 57-60 Silver City Highway, Broken Hill 

Riddiford Arboretum 🐾

Named after Walter Riddiford who was the mayor from 1949 to 1962. The reserve is one of the areas repurposed and regenerated by a local botanist Albert Morris. It features native trees, plants and shrubs and this year two sculptures by artist Robbie Rowlands.

Opening Times: 24/7

Admission: Free

Address: 111Galena St, Broken Hill

Camping in Broken Hill

Round Hill Rest Area | Free Option 🐾

A roadside rest area five minutes out of town this was our choice of place to stay for the two nights we stayed in Broken Hill. The best place to park is along the fence line and leave the main pull over area for the trucks. We had no issue leaving our caravan to see the local sites, we just out on the trailer lock to deter the honest thieves. Road noise was limited at night.

Cost: Free

Facilities: Drop toilet

Address: Barrier Highway, Broken Hill
Broken Hill

Regional Events Centre | Low Cost Option 🐾

If you are looking for a low cost camping options in a Broken Hill this is the best option. It has both powered and unpowered options as well as other facilities.

Cost: Unpowered $20/night, Powered $30/night

Facilities: Powered and unpowered sites, toilets, showers, drinking water

Address: Racecourse Road, Broken Hill

Hopefully this travel guide for budget travellers has been useful and inspires you to visit the outback mining city. Please leave a comment below.

Other Travel Guides

PIN It!

2 thoughts on “Free Things To Do Broken Hill | Travel Guide”

  1. Can’t wait to get back on the road and travelling. Broken Hill looks like a really interesting, off the beaten track place to visit. Hope you are well, and back to some happy travels soon! Pinned 🙂

    1. Won’t it be good when we can travel again. I know I miss it. Broken Hill is great, different from many other country outback towns we have been to. Enjoy your travels when you can get back doing it too.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *