Leonora is the largest commercial centre north of Kalgoorlie and offers many services and facilities for travellers to enjoy. The town's history dates back to 1869, when explorer John Forrest and his party made camp near a hill and named it Mount Leonora. This prominent feature is an ancient Aboriginal spiritual site associated with the Dreamtime story of the dingo, Baba Ngoorrba.
The town has a picturesque main street and many historic buildings surrounded by old gold mining centres and cemeteries that are popular with visitors interested in Australian gold rush history and genealogy.
The town hosts many of the Northern Goldfields’ events, from outback horse race meetings to the annual Golden Gift – a weekend of entertainment and athletics event held on the Western Australian Day long weekend in June. The Golden Gift is Australia's richest mile running race.
Keen bird watchers should venture out to the Malcolm Dam, built-in 1902 to provide water for the railway it is a haven for many native bird species. Also visit the Terraces – a large breakaway formation about 40 kilometres north-east of Leonora, providing good bushwalking and magnificent views.
Situated 40km north east of Leonora is a large breakaway formation known as The Terraces which provides good bushwalking and camping spots as well as magnificent views in every direction.
The Leonora Loop Trails are two self-drive trails that are a great way to see the area and learn the history of the region. Each trail takes about a day, so allow two days to see everything.
A real gem from the gold mining era is Gwalia Museum, one of the most fascinating places in the Western Australian Northern Goldfields. Its main points of interest include the magnificent Gwalia State Hotel, a large open cut mine, the old miners’ cottages and other commercial buildings, left by residents in December 1963 when the Sons of Gwalia Gold mine closed.
A very special attraction is Hoover House, now a guest house, but originally built in 1898 as a home for the mine manager. Herbert Hoover, who commissioned the house was later to become 31st President of the United States of America. Hoover designed the Oregon head-frame, now a landmark at the Museum, it is believed to be the only wooden incline head-frame left in Australia. The museum also houses the country’s largest steam winder (1000 hp), which was imported from England in 1912, as well as ‘Midland’, a woodline steam engine that carted over 30,000 tonnes of firewood a year to fire the boilers at the Sons of Gwalia Mine.
Flying to Leonora
Skippers Aviation is Western Australia's truly regional airline, offering regularly scheduled services to Leonora.
For more information, visit www.leonora.wa.gov.au.