The town of Kalgoorlie, 375 mi/600 km east of Perth in Western Australia, is still considered the Queen of the Golden Mile, a gold vein discovered in 1893 that contains one of the richest lodes ever found.

Kalgoorlie's 20,000 residents continue to make their living from mining. You can descend 200 ft/60 m underground to tour the drifts of the old Hannan's North Tourist Mine. You can also see gold ingots being poured, view the nuggets at the Museum of the Goldfields and go pub hopping in the classic Outback pubs.

Neighboring Coolgardie (25 mi/40 km west) is nearly a ghost town—but it still has the Goldfields Exhibition housed in a handsome old building dating from the boom days. We found a two-day visit to these cities very worthwhile. The area can be reached from Perth by air, train or car (it's a seven-hour drive).

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