Opal Festivals and Opal Shows 2020 Travel Guide

Jan 30, 2020 | Opal Talk

The opal show circuit is a great time to visit the opal fields for three key reasons.

Firstly, because it’s best time to catch a lot of miners from one area in the same place at the same time.

If one is on the hunt for opal outside the show season, they must a) find a miner who has opal for sale and b) get invited out to the mine. This is not always an easy thing to do as miners traditionally live a long way out of town and usually only come into town when necessary (stores, to lodge paperwork or to meet a buyer).

Secondly, the weather. The opal show season is held during the middle of the year which is winter and therefore the best time to visit the outback.

Thirdly, there’s all the festivities around the opal show. The small towns in outback Australian are known for their hospitality and the locals go out to make visitors feel welcome.


How to get there:

Coober Pedy, South Australia

The opal festival season kicks off with the 10th National Opal Symposium in Coober Pedy April 8 and 9, 2020Opal Festivals Opal Show Dates 2020 - 10th National Opal Symposium

The opal symposiums are held every two years and give industry people a chance to come together to discuss the state of the industry, to share knowledge and discuss their vision for the industry.

Speakers at the 2020 symposium include miners, retailers, politicians, gemologists, academics, celebrity opal hunters, government bodies as well as many individuals with unique experience in the industry.

Go to https://www.opalsymposium.org/ for more information on guest speakers and associated events.

Coober Pedy is a town that knows how to put on a good show so expect to have a good time if you decide to go.

Coober Pedy is 850.50 km from Adelaide and the road is sealed the whole way.

To get there you can drive or fly into Adelaide and either hire a car, take a plane or catch the bus.

If you can’t make it to the opal symposium the Coober Pedy Opal festival takes place June 19 - 21, 2020

A different program and equally as much fun as the symposium!


The next festival that takes place is the Winton Opal Festival July 10 -11, 2020

At the Winton Opal Festival you will find miners selling rough opal, cut gemstones and jewellery.Winton Opal Festival 2020

The festival is held outdoors along either side of the main street.

Winton can be accessed a number of ways.

If traveling by car Winton is:

924 km from Cairns (trip can be done in a day).

598 km from Townsville (trip can be done comfortably in a day).

1,357 km from Brisbane (trip can be done in a day and a half).

1,867 km from Sydney (trip takes at least two days of solid travel).

You can fly to Winton from all major towns and cities on the coast.


The next festival that takes place is the Yowah Festival and the dates for this event have not been finalized yet.

Yowah is a small town that can only be accessed by car so those wanting to attend the Yowah festival should consider doing the trip by car after Winton. The beauty of this is that one can stop in at Quilpie another key opal mining center and while there is not formal festival on at Quilpie during the show season it is still an interesting place to visit. Euromanga is also another interesting place to visit.


The next festival is the Lighting Ridge Opal Festival July 29- August 1, 2020 Lighting Ridge Opal Festival 2020

At the Lightning Ridge Opal Festival you will find miners selling rough (black opal and boulder opal) in the outdoor selling areas and cut stone and jewellery in the exhibition hall.

Below are a few video clips we made last year when we attended the Lighting Ridge Opal Festival.


How to get there.

Lighting Ridge is:

720 km from Sydney (can be done in a day by car)

661 km from Brisbane (can be done in a day by car).

The roads are sealed.

Flying from major towns and cities on the coast is also a viable option.


The final event on the opal shows and festival calendar is the Australian Opal Exhibition on the Gold Coast August 6-7, 2020Australian Opal Exibition 2020

The Australian Opal Exhibition is a trade event and attendees must register.

Go to the link below for more information.


Being on the coast and 77 km from Brisbane the Gold Coast is easily accessed by air, car, bus or train.

It is also possible to fly into Coolangatta Airport on the Gold Coast.

Map Of Australia Showing Major Road Networks

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