Coober Pedy is a town in Northern South Australia, 845km north of Adelaide on the Stuart Highway. It is sometimes referred to as the opal capital of the world because of the precious opals that are mined there.
Opals come in different colours and sizes but not all opals are valuable. Some don't even worth a dollar. This doesn't mean that some opals are not valuable.
Although this town is known for its opal production, it is majorly and widely known for its "below-ground" structures or houses called DUGOUTS. This simply means that the houses in Coober Pedy are underground unlike other houses. The next sub-topic explains why they live underground.
History Of Coober Pedy And Why The Residents Live Underground
Normally, like any other place, Coober Pedy was a deserted area with no inhabitant. What mainly attracted people to the town was the opal that was found by Wille Hutchinson on the 1st of February, 1915. Due to the high value and worth of opal, other miners were attracted to the town. That was how the colonization started on the initial isolated desert. Most people who live in the town are miners. Also, Coober Pedy supplies most of the world's gem-quality (high quality) opal.
Why The Residents Live Underground
Coober Pedy has a very hot desert climate. It has very high
sunlight, low rainfall and very little vegetation (trees and grasses). Coober Pedy can be likened to a desert.
Most miners had to live in such harsh weather condition(very high temperature) inorder to perform their mining activities.
The are faced with a harsh weather condition and they had to find a solution or else they will die. Their only solution was to live in caves called DUGOUTS. A standard three-bedroom cave house with lounge, kitchen and bathroom can be excavated out of the rock in the hillside for a similar price to building a house on the surface (a normal house). Almost 80% of the population lives underground.
The underground houses have running water, power supply and other essentials of a normal house. The main purpose why they had to live underground is to escape from the hot temperature of the desert. Almost all, if not all of their buildings and structures are underground. There are also hotels for tourists that are built underground.
The population of the town is about 2,500 of people of mixed races, nationality, color and background. The inhabitants engage in sporting activities like playing golf (mostly at night because of the heat) and football(they even have a football team).
The town was also used as the setting (location) of some movies like Fire in the Stone, Opal Dream, Until the End of the World and so on.
What do you think about Coober Pedy?
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Also, stay safe and live a holy life.
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