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Boulia is a town in Central West Queensland, Australia. It lies on the Burke River, which was named after the explorer Robert O'Hara Burke who passed through the area with the Burke and Wills expedition in 1860. The township was gazetted in 1879. Boulia is the administrative centre of the Boulia Shire, population approximately 600, which covers an area of 61,176 square kilometres. The town itself has about 200 inhabitants.
The area is chiefly known for the unexplained phenomena of the Min Min light. Travellers in the area have often reported being followed for some distance by a ball of light, which eventually disappears. No scientific explanation has yet been discovered for the lights.
When Boulia storekeeper James Edward Jones built his home in 1888, little did he know that it would become one of Western Queensland's major attractions. The building was constructed as a family dwelling and now boasts an array of history surrounding the Jones family and early settlement life in Boulia.
The town hosts the Boulia Desert Sands Camel Races, one of the more important events on the Australian camel racing circuit. Extensive grazing of beef cattle is the predominant industry.
The climate is very hot and dry, with on average over 200 days per year over 30 °C. Although even in June and July the average maximum is a very warm 24 °C, frosts are not unknown in the morning during these months. Annual rainfall is extraordinarily erratic: it has been as low as 24 millimetres in 1905 and 51 millimetres in 1963. However, when the monsoon is strong rainfall can be heavy: in January 1974 Boulia received 465 millimetres of rain and in March 1950 346 millimetres. Maximum annual rainfall totals are 799 millimetres in 1950 and 774 millimetres in 1974, but the median annual rainfall is only 216 millimetres.
There is no public transport to Boulia.
Boulia is very small and almost everything can be reached on foot.
For a decent pub meal, go to the Australia Hotel/Motel and Pub.
The Australia Hotel has a bar and cold beer available.
There are several options in town. On the edge of town there is a camping grounds, with some simple lodging units as well. There is also the Australia Hotel/Motel, which has affordable and comfortable motel-style units. The Deserts Sands Motel is the most luxurious option in town.
Internet cafés are very common in the larger Australian cities and popular tourist destinations. However, once you leave the major population centres, you might have trouble finding somewhere to log on. Free wifi is getting more and more common (either with or without a code) in places like restaurants, some bars and coffee places and hotels. Sometimes a fee is required.
See also: International Telephone Calls
Australia is on a GSM 900/1800 network, so if you have an unlocked phone that works on those frequencies, you will be able to buy a prepaid SIM-card and stick into your phone when you're in Australia. You will receive a new Australian phone number with the SIM-card.
To dial out of Australia use the prefix 0011, followed by the calling code of the country you are trying to reach, followed by the area code of the city/town (without the 0!) and finally the phone number.
Within Australia, it is necessary to add an area code to the phone numbers if you are calling from outside the area. Below are Australia's area codes:
000 is the emergency telephone number in Australia, but the international GSM mobile emergency telephone number 112 also works on mobile phones.
Australia Post is the government's postal service. Most suburbs will have at least one post office. Opening times are mostly from around 8:00 or 9:00am to 5:00pm though larger ones keep longer hours sometimes. A standard letter or postcard sent within Australia will cost $0.60. Internationally, it costs $1.70 to send postcards anywhere in the world. Letters cost $1.85 to send within the Asia Pacific region and $2.60 to anywhere else in the world.. It is also possible to send things as parcels or by express mail. You can also use use private courier companies like TNT, UPS or DHL as they are competitive and reliable.
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