Free camping halfway across Australia at Kimba, a place we did not know anything about. So why did we stop?
There is a rather large sign on the way into Kimba letting everyone know that Kimba is the halfway point across Australia. So how could we not go into town and have a look?
The best thing we could have done, the place is geared towards the tourist, catering for families, Grey Nomads and anyone who is not in these groups!
Main features of Kimba
The Big Galah
The Big Galah, is one of the biggest features of the town, and has been for many years. It is hard to miss!
It is on the Eyre Highway, just before the right hand turn into the town centre (actually the last turn into the town centre).
The silos are located beside the Eyre Highway as you are driving into the city, but the best view can be had of these from the street which runs parallel to the highway. In fact, when you reach the sign Welcoming you to Kimba, there is a street to the right, if you take that, then next left over the railway line and follow this road into town, the silos will be on your left. Worth a look, as you can see here.
As I mentioned above Kimba has Central Park, but it also has another small park in the centre of town, opposite the pub. This park honours war veterans, and is very beautiful, with an under cover area set aside for picnics, BBQ’s etc
Central Park is a few streets further back from the centre of town. It has a large pool, a very large children’s playground area with a jumping balloon in the ground.
In addition, there is also a BBQ area with honour rolls of special Kimba people and a wealth of information as well, and toilet and shower facilities.
Free camping and sports ground
Not far from Central Park is the Kimba Recreation Reserve, incorporating:
- The showgrounds,
- Cricket club,
- AFL football team,
- Netball team,
- Tennis club,
- Lawn bowls,
- Horse riding club,
- Free camping and
- excellent functions rooms catering for weddings and the like.
We toured the area and were most impressed with the facilities, with one exception. There is not a lot of shade, something which could be remedied with some effort.
Other features of Kimba
As we were halfway through the day, and on our way to Minnipa, we did not get to see all that Kimba has to offer. We know that they have displays of old farming equipment, cars etc, a walking trail called: Roora Walking Trail and many other attractions.
Kimba is well worth a stay of at least 2 nights, preferably also on a week day as the shops were closed on the day we arrived, Sunday!
History of Kimba
Whilst we were having lunch at Central Park, we met a local, Clarrie Hutchins who filled us in on some of the history of the town.
In the 1800’s there were many smaller farms, of around the 5 to 10,000 acres size which ensured that there were many people visiting town for supplies, supporting the town and making life very vibrant.
With the dawn of the large farming enterprises, owned by corporations most of these smaller farms were “swallowed up” thereby reducing the numbers coming into the town. The end result was that the population has dwindled to a relatively small number, and recorded as just over 600 in the 2006 census. Having driven around the city, I would estimate that this number has increased, marginally!
Accordingly, the people of the town have been looking for other ways to attract people to their special place.
You will notice that Google maps does not show Central Park with the extended children’s playground, nor the silo’s painted. I believe that the Google maps of this area are around 5 years old, meaning that in the last 5 years the people of Kimba have banded together to improve the “look and feel” of the township.
This is a clear indication that they are looking for the traveller.