Southern Cross is located on the Great Eastern Highway, four hours’ drive (368 kilometres) east of Perth. It is the centre for the Yilgarn Shire (Yilgarn is the Aboriginal word for white stone or quartz). The area includes Bullfinch, Marvel Loch, Moorine Rock, Bodallin and Koolyanobbing.
Surrounded by a prosperous, well established farming area, Southern Cross is home to some of the largest farms in the State. The history that surrounds the district complements the beauty and adventure of the Shire of Yilgarn.
Southern Cross attractions
The land is spectacularly beautiful in spring with wildflowers. Popular attractions within the Southern Cross area include Baladjie Rock, Frog Rock, Karalee Dam and Hunt's Soak; all interesting to visit and ideal picnic spots. For a panoramic view of the area, head up to Wimmera Hill Lookout which overlooks the township, the surrounding farmland and goldmines. Just east of town is the old cemetery which was developed as a Pioneer Memorial. Yilgarn History Museum, open daily, provides a glimpse of the area's history.
Gold was discovered in Southern Cross in 1888 by Tom Risely and Mick Toomey. They named the place after the stars that had been their guide. Today all the streets and the salt lake of the town are named after stars or constellations.
The early settlers relied on horse and camel teams to transport goods. Chaff to feed them was expensive and so crops were grown on the 160 acre Miners Homestead blocks. Later, in the 1920s, a number of blocks were opened up as a Soldier Settlement, followed by the Miners' Settlement project establishing miners suffering from 'Miners' Phthisis' on the land.
For more information about Southern Cross, visit the Shire of Yilgarn website www.yilgarn.wa.gov.au
Southern Cross accommodation
Hotel, motel, lodge and caravan park accommodation is available in Southern Cross, as well as farm stays near the town.