Towns in Australia

Exploring Australia, town by town

Ooldea SA


Postcode: 5700

Ooldea is a tiny settlement in South Australia. It is on the eastern edge of the Nullarbor Plain, 863 km west of Port Augusta on the Trans-Australian Railway. Ooldea is 143 km from the bitumen Eyre Highway.

It was the site of a mission for Aboriginal children which was visited twice by Norman Tindale and was home for many years to Daisy Bates, both concerned with understanding and protecting Aboriginal culture.

Ooldea was an important camp during construction of the railway, as it is near a permanent waterhole, first discovered by Europeans when Ernest Giles used it in 1875. It was also important as the railway siding servicing the nuclear testing at Maralinga.