The Breakaways is located on the Aboriginal Antakirinja Land which is located in far North of South Australia, 25 Kilometres North-North-West of the Opal Mining Township of Coober Pedy.


Aboriginal people have lived in this area for thousands of years and the Breakaway’s area has been held as a very important place for Aboriginal people. Before the white settlement the name of the area was “Umoona” which is named after the Umoona tree meaning long life which is found at the Breakaway’s and the Umoona Community in Coober Pedy.

After white man inhabited this area in search of opal Aboriginal people named this area Kupaku Piti meaning “white man’s hole”. Kupaku is a Muntunjarra word for White man and Piti is an Antakirinja word for hole. These are two traditional groups who own this area, the first group being Antakirinja and the other being Muntunjarra.

Aboriginal culture does not allow the full story of the Breakaways to be told as it is a teaching place for all young Wati’s(Men). However some of this information is permitted to be recited.

Two Dogs (pupa) – The non-aboriginal people call this salt and pepper, they also call it the castle but to Aboriginal people it is known as the two dogs sitting down, a yellow one and a white one. Another important area is the peaked hill to the south west of Two Dogs: this is the Man (wati) owner of the dogs.

Beyond the two dogs is the Emu (kalayu) with all the little chicks with the father Emu looking after them. It is a very important place and the Emu used to look after this whole area.


From Lookout Two the Willy wagtail and Cadney or Bearded Dragon Lizard is visible. The Bearded Dragon Lizard is the token for the Antakarinja people of this area.


The Breakaways is the main source of Red Ochre (Tudu) used in dressing up ceremony as well as other Ochre colours.

As quoted by: C1996 W H (Billy) Lennon Snr – Aboriginal Elder – Antakirinja Yunkunjatarra


The Antakirinja Land Council is currently in the process of placing Aboriginal Heritage Protection and Native Title Claims on these areas within and outside of the Breakaways Reserve.

Access Roads: The Stuart Highway is the major access route for visitors to the Breakaways Reserve and its complete sealing in 1998 has increased accessibility to the Reserve. The Highway now passes within 5 kilometres of the Reserve with visitors only required to travel over a formed dirt road for the remainder of the distance to the Main Lookout.

Access to the Breakaways Reserve apart from the Breakaways Access Road is via the Dog Fence Scenic Tourist Drive Road.

The Dog Fence Scenic Tourist Road was constructed in June 1993 by the District Council of Coober Pedy with the financial assistance from the South Australian Tourist Commission. Access to this road is via the Oodnadatta Road.

Both access roads are under the care and control and maintained by the District Council of Coober Pedy. There are restrictions placed by Mines and Energy S.A. on the Stuart Highway access to inform visitors of the dangers of entering the Precious Stones Fields.