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Mt Isa Rodeo

Mt Isa Rodeo Horse and Rider

Now more than fifty years since the inaugural rodeo was held in Mount Isa in 1959, the event has become synonymous with the Queensland Outback lifestyle and all things cowboy.

To learn more about the history of the rodeo visitors can take a stroll along the ‘Isa Rodeo Walk of Fame’ at Mount Isa’s own ‘Rodeo Drive’ to see the names of legendary rodeo riders and champion stock.

The Rodeo normally runs for four days in the first week of August each year and is everything you might expect from a Rodeo event, horses, bulls, excitement and thrills.

If you are looking to get your first look at real rodeo or you’re an experienced hand in the business, be sure to get yourself along to this one as it is a major event on the Australian Rodeo Calendar.

But it’s not just cowboys and rodeo events that make Mount Isa such a great place to visit for a holiday. Visitors can catch also get a great insight into the town’s modern mining operations and experience a variety of historical attractions.

Xstrata is a major employer in the city and now operates two mines, employing approximately 4,500 staff, this vibrant and progressive city is definitely at the forefront of Australia’s mining industry.

The best place to take a behind the scenes look at what goes on underground is at the city’s $12 million dollar premier tourist attraction - Outback at Isa.

Outback at Isa:
Built and operated by real miners, Outback at Isa’s guided “Hard Times Mine Tour” takes visitors 30 metres underground to experience first-hand the daily life and workings of a typical modern mine.

Suited up in bright orange overalls and hard hats with lamps, you can explore a rabbit warren of underground tunnels and pathways, learn about the history and evolution of mining and get busy with some real mining equipment like the ‘Air Leg Drill’.

Just next door to the mining complex is the Riversleigh Fossil Display Centre and Laboratory where you can walk through interactive displays and see fossils and life-size replicas of some of the ancient animals which inhabited the region many thousands of years ago.

Take a visit to Mount Isa’s underground hospital from the days of World War II, the Royal Flying Doctors Museum, Kalkadoon Tribal Centre and Culture-Keeping Place, and the Mount Isa School of the Air whose students live up to 500km away and come to ‘class’ over the radio, are also great experiences.

Accommodation at the Isa ranges from camping to self-contained apartments and comfortable hotel and motel rooms. Accommodation books out quickly around rodeo time so be sure to book soon.

Getting There:
Mount Isa is located in north-west Queensland, 900km inland from Townsville along the Overlander’s Way. There are also direct flights from Brisbane, Gold Coast, Darwin, Alice Springs, Townsville and Cairns, as well as by road and bus.

Photo: Supplied

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