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The population of Coober Pedy exploded after the discovery of opals in 1915. The town still supplies most of the world gem-quality opals used in jewelry. There are more than 250,000 mine shaft entrances because of a law regulating large-scale mining, so speculators worked around the law by opening multiple entrances. However, the best way access the underground is to visit the Serbian Orthodox church, a truly sacred place to appreciate the birthplace of the opal craze. The town served as the inspiration for Wim Wender's "Until the End of the World" because of its big sky location and open landscapes. Before you visit Australia, use our trip planner to discover what you can do and see there.
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