The restoration and refurbishment of the mine as a tourist attraction began in 1995 opening in 1996. The mine is accessible to those in wheelchairs, prams and the elderly. A tour of the mine takes one hour to complete. Hard hats are supplied and must be worn in the mine.
Before it was a mine, it was a cave, and home to vast colonies of bats that left behind tonnes of droppings, or guano, rich in phosphates.
The mine dates back to 1914, with 6000 tons of phosphate mined during its four years of operation (1914 to 1918).
The mine allows visitors to experience the conditions the miners endured when the mine operated almost 100 years ago. The mine is complete with original timber sets and nails, old train tracks and pick marks on the walls.
Visitors to the mine are also able to see the fossils and bones which date back as far as 300,000 years.
This is one of the most significant fossil sites in the world.
Around 1830 fossil bones were discovered in the caves by George Ranken. Rankin returned later with Sir Thomas Mitchell and collected a huge variety of fossil bones from the caves.
These remains became the subject of an address by Mitchell to the Geological Society of London in 1831 and the discoveries attracted international attention during the 19th century. They were an important factor in the development of Charles Darwin's theory of evolution..
Since that time the caves have been a steady source of information about ancient geology and fauna.
Collapses and other geological phenomena have splintered and scattered skeletons and the phosphate mining from 1914 to 1918 destroyed some priceless palaeontological evidence.
The mining operation revealed the 'Bone Cave' (in the eastern loop of the mine) which shows, embedded in the walls, the bone fragments of prehistoric creatures who existed long before man.
The cave burrows into a virtual hill of bones - the largest deposit of Plio-Pleistocene mammal fossils in Australia .
The Bone Cave is one of the world's most significant fossil sites containing - the skeletal remains of marsupial lions, diprotodon (The diprotodon was herbivorous and its teeth were well adapted for grazing. It roamed the area during the Pleistocene period. (Some say similar to a very large wombat - there is a replica statue on-site - near the information centre)), giant kangaroos and huge seven-metre-long carnivorous goannas. The walls are embedded with thousands of bone fragments and fossils; lit by ultraviolet light, the ancient bones glow eerily in the darkness.