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Coober Pedy Is The Loose Unit Town Of South Australia & You Simply Have To Check It Out

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Coober Pedy might not be at the top of your bucket list – the small South Australian town is smack-bang in the middle of nowhere, and aside from being a destination on the Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert road trip, you probably don’t know much else about the place.

Look, I wouldn’t say you should plan a trip where the only destination on your list is Coober Pedy, but you’d be a fool to skip the quirky mining town as part of a longer outback road trip through SA’s amazing open spaces.

I hit up Coober Pedy on route to Alice Springs from Adelaide. This stretch of the Stuart Highway – the long, straight track that connects the bottom and top of Australia – is pretty desolate. In similar advice I gave about the Oodnadatta Track, it’s imperative you fill up on fuel every chance you get, carry water in the car and check in with friends/family along the way.

To be honest, I was excited to see Coober Pedy, but didn’t expect a lot from it. I knew it from Priscilla, but beyond getting my Instagram snap at the sign upon entry, I hadn’t thought very far ahead.

Turns out Coobs has HEAPS to offer. Here’s what I did in 24 hours.

1. Stay In A Dugout

One of the coolest quirks about Coober Pedy is its dugouts. Homes and hotels built into hills around town to naturally create a more liveable environment in what is quite a relentlessly hot township, some date back decades while others have been modernised.

I stayed in the Desert Cave Hotel, the first underground tourist accommodation in Coober Pedy and still going with dugout hotel rooms. These are not for the claustrophobic – while they are roomy and temperate, the no-windows factor can creep you out if you’re not great with enclosed spaces. Having said that, it is an experience and a half to sleep with no air-con on a sweltering night, and have your room maintain a lovely 22C temp.

Not keen on a hotel? Airbnb and Stayz have heaps of dugout rentals. Just book ahead – these types of properties naturally book out quickly so you need to be on your game planning wise.

2. Check Out Crocodile Harrys

Seen Crocodile Dundee? Go stream it before your trip – the character of Mick is allegedly based on this guy, a super hot drifter type who set up in his own cave system carved into the side of a hill outside of town.

Harry is long gone, but his home remains open for tourists to visit. Because it’s unmanned, expect heaps of graffiti from decades past honouring the late, great ladies man. Also, expect boobs.

3. Go Opal Hunting

Credit: Getty

There is literally a spot where you can freely fossick for opals in Coober Pedy, the town known globally for its opal mines. Yep, you just pull up and get sifting in the dirt. You’ll want to know what to look for – don’t expect to spot a shiny, polished opal or anything. It’s a good idea to head to some of the opal stores on the main street first, have a look at what they’re selling, and ask them for tips on opal fossicking.

We went to Waffles & Gems, which – yep – sells both waffles AND gems. Grab a country-style milkshake (read: an actually amazing one) and ask the folks inside about spotting a good opal. We got some invaluable tips on everything from opal pricing to how you’re meant to fossick. Oh, and they’ve got some “opal fossicking” you can do out front, too. It’s meant to be for little kids but hey, who’s judging?

4. Grab A Beer Next To The Servo

You read that right – the restaurant next to the local servo, Outback Bar & Grill, is one of the best spots in town for a beer and a feed. And not in that way of “well, this’ll do” – it’s genuinely delicious tucker and icy cold beer.

I had never, ever eaten inside a servo and had good food until I visited Coober Pedy.

5. Head To The Kanku-Breakaways

Credit: Tourism South Australia

If you want to know what it would be like to drive across Mars, this is surely the closest you can get in Australia. The Kanku-Breakaways Conservation Park is less hiking, more road touring – follow the track and cruise through red dirt, black sand and multi-coloured mountains for the IG snaps of your DREAMS.

Also worth hitting up is the Dingo Fence, once of the longest structures in the world at 5,614 kilometres. It was built in the 1880s to keep the dingos out (not “keep the rabbits out”, that’s another fence) and from the Breakaways, you can see it all the way through to the horizon. Mad stuff.

6. Head Down Into A Mine

Credit: Tourism South Australia

The Old Timers Mine or Tom’s Working Opal Mine are the big guns out here. Head underground with a hard hat on and suss the conditions opal miners used to work in – and do work in today, depending on which one you hit up.

It is a wild experience to get down into the Earth, and it’s not something you get to do often. Also, it’s cooler down there – a huge bonus on a blisteringly hot day like the day we went.

7. Check Out A Time Warp Dugout

Faye’s Underground Home is EVERYTHING if you’re a retro fangirl like me. This dugout, built over ten years by two women, is an Australiana icon and well worth a peek if you’re in town.

The ultimate snap has to be the indoor pool. Would I want an indoor pool in my dugout? Probably not. Do I love this one? Absolutely yes.

If you wanna make Coober Pedy a road trip destination this year, my advice is absolutely do it – given it’s almost 9 hours away from Adelaide, it works best as a stopover from SA’s capital to Alice Springs or Uluru. If you’ve got heaps of leave, why not do the whole of the Stuart Highway up to Darwin? Hey – we can’t go overseas for a while, may as well check out what this Great Southern Land has to offer.

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The Advantages of Online Casino Welcome Bonuses

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When it comes to online gambling, the industry is thriving in 2020. Although casinos are banned in many countries, people still find ways to enjoy their favorite games of chance. However, considering the level of competition on the market, it may be difficult for a beginner to find a good online platform and take advantage of all offers. In this article, you will learn the benefits of casinos’ welcome bonuses.

What Is a Sign-Up Bonus?

As we have already established, the industry is growing rapidly and companies are desperately looking for new ways to attract customers. A welcome bonus is often used by online casinos to get new leads and players in the future. However, the best casino bonuses can be easily used to the player’s advantage. Here are the main reasons you should not neglect this offer.

  1. It saves your money

Quite obvious, right? Well, this is the main reason why you should always use welcome bonuses in online gambling: it is always better to not risk your own money. It is especially true for beginners. Since they have no experience, it is fairly common for beginners to lose their initial investment and be done with gambling for good. However, if you use your welcome bonus as a way of getting the basics skills, the chances of success will rise significantly.

  1. It allows you to try several games

Another common issue beginners face is a lack of understanding of which types of games they want to try: slots, roulette, baccarat, blackjack, etc. If you use your sign-up bonus, you will be able to play several games and choose the ones you like better. Moreover, you can take advantage of a welcome bonus on several online gambling platforms. That way you will try out even more options.

  1. It will make future gambling more profitable

Besides beneficial sign-up bonuses, good online casinos usually have great loyalty programs. For instance, the company may double up to five first deposits on the platform. If you invest 100 USD, you will get 200 USD to your account. More money — more games — more chances of winning.

Although a welcome bonus is a great way of upping your gambling game, there are a few things you should pay attention to. Firstly, a good bonus does not equal a good platform. Before choosing a casino, make sure that the company is legal and trustworthy. Since there are many scams right now, it is essential if you want to save your money. Moreover, check the available deposit/withdrawal methods and their terms.

We hope that this article has shown the true power of online casinos’ welcome bonuses and how you can use them to your own advantage. Follow our tips while choosing a platform and enjoy the best gambling experience.

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3 Key Mistakes to Avoid When Playing Blackjack

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Blackjack is the most popular casino game in the world. The card game, sometimes referred to as ‘21’, accounts for an average of 31 percent of all casino table traffic – this is consistent both online and in physical casinos. For reference, the second most popular is roulette (24%) followed by poker (21%).

It’s easy to understand blackjack’s popularity. It’s a simple game to grasp and offers players a mix of luck and skill: luck in the cards that are drawn, skill over how those cards are dealt and a player’s eventual hand. Compare that to roulette, which is based entirely on luck, and poker, which has a huge skill element to it.

However, while the beauty of blackjack is in its simplicity, there are also a number of complexities to the game, and as is the case with almost anything in life, you learn more from mistakes than successes.

With that in mind, here are three key mistakes to avoid when playing blackjack that can significantly increase your chances of winning, while limiting your losses.

Choosing the Wrong Table

Before a single card is drawn, being at the wrong table – whether live or online – is the first mistake to avoid.

First of all, each blackjack table will have different minimum bet requirements so avoid choosing one that is out of your budget. For instance, if you choose a table with a $100 minimum bet and your budget is $200, you might only play two hands.

Secondly, check the payout odds on the blackjack table. These are typically 6:5 and 3:2 and will affect how much gets paid out when you hit blackjack and land other bonus wins. Where possible, choose a 3:2 table as it pays out higher.

Thirdly, choose between a virtual and a live table. This is not so much a mistake to avoid but more comes down to personal preference. Virtual tables allow players to play against an automated computer, so you can play at your own pace, while live tables are usually quicker paced as human dealers are keen to move the game along.

When to Hit and Stand

As a general rule, most blackjack players know to hit when the hand is 12 and to stand when the hand equals 17. However, there are plenty of variables to consider that could influence when to hit and stand. Getting these right can really boost your chances of beating the house, while getting it wrong could prove costly.

One key move to implement is to always hit on a soft 17 – when the two cards are an ace and a six. This means that if you draw a 10 or picture card (jack, queen, king), then you convert your hand into a hard 17. It also gives greater flexibility if you draw a smaller value card as the ace can be used as a one.

While many players adopt a strict ‘never bust’ policy, meaning they always stand when their hand equals 12 or more, this can be ill-advised as it depends almost entirely on the dealer going bust.

Instead, analyze the value of your two cards compared to the dealer’s first card and weigh up the risk factor in drawing another card before the dealer draws their second. As a strict rule, if your first two cards equal 17 or more, then stand – anything else can be hit depending on the situation.

When to Split and Double

If you are playing in a blackjack tournament, either online or live, learning when to split and double can make all the difference to your chances of success. The same also applies to individual games of blackjack.

Click here to check the best tips on blackjack tournament strategies: https://extra.betamerica.com/casino-news/blackjack-tournaments-rules-strategy-and-where-to-find-them/

Splitting is when you split two cards when dealt the same value cards, so a pair of eights for example. Doubling is when you are given the option to double your bet after being dealt your initial two cards.

While it can be tempting to split and double at every opportunity to increase your winning, doing at the right time is the key.

It is not recommended to split when:

  • You are dealt two picture cards or two 10s
  • You are dealt two 9s
  • You are dealt two 5s
  • The dealer holds a 10 or picture card

It is best to split when:

  • You are dealt two 8s
  • You are dealt two aces
  • The dealer holds a 5 or 6 (as this is the highest probability of a bust)

Similar to knowing when to hit and stand, take a brief moment to assess the dealer’s drawn card compared to your own two cards and determine whether the probabilities are in your favour.

Likewise, knowing when to double down – when not to double down – can change the complexities of your blackjack game. A simple rule to know when to double is if your two cards equal 10 and the dealer’s card is between 2-9. Additionally, if you hold an ace, you can consider a double as these have the flexibility of playing as 11 or 1. But if the dealer’s card is an ace, ignore the double.

Conclusion

Blackjack may be a simple game but there are some important strategies to keep in mind next time you head to the virtual or live table. The game itself is still rooted in luck so there are never any guarantees to long-term success. However, by keeping these three important rules in mind, you can at least avoid making avoidable mistakes.

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Top 5 Entertainment Activities for College Students

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The life of college students is sometimes too complicated. They have to face tons of homework assignments that steal their time. Many students get stressed because of continuous learning. They seem to forget how to relax. If you’re a busy student, you should remember that you’re still young and shouldn’t waste this precious life stage. You can undertake some entertainment activities sometimes. Take your friends and organize funny games to unwind and let off some pressure. We asked writing experts from a professional essay service Smart Writing Service to share their ideas and provide you with top-5 entertainment activities for college students you may like. 

Who Are You?

Students, especially freshmen, don’t know each other perfectly. They may be taken by surprise when some of them tell something quite unexpected about their hobbies, preferences, and so on. If you want to know other students better, suggest playing a game called “Who Are You”.

Form at least three teams. If there are many folks, you can form more teams. Choose a speaker of the game. It may be even one of your teachers or professors. All groups will be given topics to discuss. The speaker is supposed to announce a new topic every few minutes. You may discuss and answer the following topics:

  • What is the greatest challenge you are facing?
  • What do you like or hate most about yourself?
  • What is your greatest value in life?
  • What emotions do you express easily?
  • What is the most valuable thing in friendship?
  • Who you want to become in five years?
  • What is your major objective for next year?
  • Is there something you want to improve about yourself?
  • What motto do you try to live by?
  • Where would you like to travel?
  • If you were to study abroad, what country would that be?

Students should write their answers on index cards. The speaker should gather the answers of every student and shuffle them. Afterward, he/she redistributes them randomly to students. Each person should guess whose card he/she is holding. Play this game after you spend some time together and already know at least something about one another.

Sentence Completion

Another fun activity is “Sentence Completion.” Most people like it because it’s commonly accompanied by laughter and good mood. It’s necessary to prepare a list of sentences. Those sentences should have a beginning, but with no end. Every student should finish the sentence he/she gets. Oftentimes, students give funny answers. At times, they are quite serious, and we can learn something important about other students. Here are several sentence beginnings you may choose:

  • Before I came to college, I was interested in…
  • When I was a child, I wanted to become…
  • The best moment I remember most about high school is…
  • My favorite pet is…
  • The things I value most are…
  • Five years from now I hope to be…
  • My greatest personality trait is…
  • My favorite subject at high school was…
  • If I could change one thing in the world, it would be…
  • My greatest fear is…
  • After I graduate from college, I…

The Reception Line

You may likewise try another entertaining activity for college students. It is called “The Reception Line.” Gather all the mates eager to participate. Divide yourselves into two groups. If you form more, it won’t fit the rules of the game. Each person talks to the person in front of him/her until he/she must move. The person at the end of one line goes to the end of the other line. This method makes it possible to meet new people. Thus, students will learn more about each other. You can make shifts every next topic or set a limit. For example, the pair should discuss 5 topics and afterward move to change partners. Here are some interesting topics to discuss:

  • Where would you like to travel?
  • What motto do you try to follow?
  • What is your favorite movie?
  • What music do you like?
  • What is your favorite hobby?
  • Why did you choose this college?
  • What do you like about college life the most?

Take Sides

You can likewise suggest a game, which offers only two options. It’s called “Take Sides.” Create a list of questions with two answers. Students should obligatorily choose one of them. Afterward, you may discuss the answers. Let everyone explain his/her choices. Thus, you’ll learn more about each other, and it will bring you closer. Here are several suggestions:

  • Watermelon or banana?
  • Sweat or bitter?
  • Short trips every weekend or a journey around the world for three months?
  • Partying or hiking?
  • Listen or speak?
  • Rock or pop?
  • Morning or night?
  • Superman or Batman?
  • Robocop or Terminator?
  • Harry Potter or the Lord of the Rings?
  • Los Angeles or New York?
  • Liberal or conservative?
  • American football or ice hockey?

My Most Embarrassing Moment

You can likewise tell each other about the most embarrassing moments. It’s important to be honest and don’t imagine a story that never took place. All the participants should agree on this term. Commonly, it is a very entertaining activity. Students tell funny stories they’ve been through. It commonly makes them closer.

These activities for college students are very simple to follow. They are really entertaining. Mind that we have mentioned only 5 of them. However, you can try a hundred activities more. Use our examples to have fun and relax. They may inspire you and your friends to look for other entertaining activities.

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