Top 5 Easter road trips

Goolwa

Goolwa wildlife

1. Goolwa - history, beach and nature
Whatever the time of year, Goolwa has heaps to offer and it’s only an hour and a half drive from Adelaide. There are two main routes and not much between them timewise.

The Southern Expressway is the most direct route - simply continue onto Victor Harbor Road taking the Goolwa Road turnoff just after Mount Compass.

The alternative, and arguably more picturesque route, is up the South Eastern Freeway exiting at either Stirling or Hahndorf and winding your way through the Adelaide Hills pastoral country via Echunga and Meadows.

Things to see and do

Spirit of the coorong

Spirit of the Coorong

  • Stroll down the charming main street
  • Old Goolwa Police Station now the Regional Arts Centre
  • Jekejere Park - native plants and explanation of their uses
  • Ballast Stone Winery
  • Old wharf area including Hector’s Café and The Steam Exchange Brewery
  • The Cockle Train
  • Goolwa beach for fish n chips or an ice-cream at the quirky Bombora café
  • Walk on the Barrages
  • Read the Kungan Ngarrindjeri Yunnan Agreement between the Alexandrina Council and Ngarrindjeri Nation
  • Cruise the Coorong or a Canoe the Coorong tour.

2. Kangaroo Island
It’s surprising how many South Australians have yet to visit the internationally famous shores of Kangaroo Island (KI) because it really is a beautiful, uniquely Australian place.

It’s possible to have a fantastic time in a day or two but you’ll need to catch an early ferry (1.5 hour drive to the SeaLink ferry terminal at Cape Jervis and a 45 minute crossing) and plan out what you want to see.

Things to see and do

John the Pelican Man

John the Pelican Man

  • Explore the Dudley Peninsula including South Australia’s first lighthouse at Cape Willoughby Conservation Park, and Dudley Wine’s award winning cliff top cellar door.
  • M.B. Stonor Art Glass Studio
  • The Oyster Farm Shop at American River
  • The stunning surf beach of Pennington Bay
  • KI Artworks Gallery, Baudin Beach.
  • The Emu Ridge Eucalyptus Distillery
  • Clifford’s Honey Farm
  • Island Pure Sheep Dairy
  • Australia’s number one gin at KI Spirits.
  • Kingscote, KI’s largest town
  • Reeves Point, the first official settlement in South Australia and close to Bay of Shoals Winery.
  • Emu Bay Lavender Farm
  • ‘John the Pelican Man’ - 5pm most at nights Kingscote Wharf
  • Guided tour at Seal Bay Conservation Park
  • Raptor Domain’s Birds of Prey display and reptile shows
  • The wildlife of Flinders Chase National Park
  • Tobogganing the sand dunes of Little Sahara, quad biking with Kangaroo Island Outdoor Action and scrambling through Kelly Hill Caves
  • The highlight of any KI trip is likely to be the natural wonders of Admiral’s Arch and Remarkable Rocks – sure to impress even the most seasoned traveller.

3. Barossa – with a Segway Sensation
If you want a drive with scenery, culture, gourmet fare and maybe even a bit of adventure then a day trip to the Barossa with a side of Segway riding at Seppeltsfield will deliver.

Head to the Barossa Valley via North East Road and Williamstown, so you can stop off at the Whispering Wall (around a one hour drive). From the Wall via Lyndoch to Seppeltsfield allow another 40 minutes including 10 minutes Lyndoch Bakery snack time.

The Mausoleum and Segway Sensation are well signposted once you find your way to another great pointer that you are on track - Seppeltsfield Road.

If you want to sleep over and your kids are younger (or even if they aren’t) try the Discovery Holiday Park, Barossa Valley in Tanunda, as their new water park opened recently and is sure to please.

Make sure you book your Segway Sensation SA tour in advance to get the time you want.

Things to see and do

Segway Sensation SA

Segway Sensation SA

  • Whispering Wall for a delightful acoustic surprise
  • Lyndoch Bakery
  • Seppeltsfield winery including the newly designed and very cool cellar door, the historic Mausoleum  and the JamFactory Shop
  • Segway Sensation SA tour through the vines
  • Wonderful dining options at Seppeltsfield from the much acclaimed fine dining at Fino to Benno’s Kiosk and the picnic grounds.
  • The 40’s Café in Angaston for their famous pizza and a glass of wine.

4. Strathalbyn via Mt Barker and Stirling
Strathalbyn and Mt Barker often slip under the destination radar but when it comes to scenery and activities there are plenty of options.

Head straight up the South Eastern Freeway from Adelaide to Mt Barker (36 minutes). From Mt Barker head south on Wellington Road and follow the B37 to Strathalbyn.

It’s a beautifully scenic 20 minute drive (23km). Drive back to Adelaide on the B37 then B33 (Strathalbyn Road) and mosey along through pastoral fields, rolling hills and pretty towns, with a coffee stop at Mylor’s Harvest Cafe.

Or finish up with afternoon tea, or even dinner, in the buzzy village of Stirling. It’s only 20 minutes down the hill from there to the Adelaide CBD.

Things to see and do

Soldiers

Soldiers' Memorial Gardens, Strathalbyn

  • Wander along the quaint Mt Barker main street – Gawler street
  • Take in the views from Mt Barker Summit (15 minutes out of town on Springs Road then Summit Road)
  • Laratinga Wetlands – Mt Barker
  • Strathalbyn old Railway Station building and Visitor Information Centre at 20 South Terrace
  • Browse for bric-a-brac or antiques in Strathalbyn town
  • Strathalbyn Market – every third Sunday of the month
  • Harvest Café – Strathalbyn Road in Mylor
  • Stirling Market – fourth Sunday of the month
  • The Stirling Hotel and cellars for yummy food and beverages.

5. Burra Heritage Passport
For a drive that’s positively bursting with history you can’t beat the Burra Heritage Passport self-drive tour.  This beautiful old copper mining town has bucket loads of history, from the old mine site to a multitude of buildings and services that supported the once thriving mining industry. 

Allow a couple of hours to get to Burra  - the quickest route is the Northern Expressway up to the Gawler bypass, then take the Horrocks Highway B82 exit on the left, signposted to Gawler, Clare and Burra.  Continue to around 5km north of Tarlee where you’ll turn right onto the A32 which takes you all the way to Burra via Riverton.

Swing by the visitor information centre in the middle of town to pick up your passport. You’ll receive a map, information booklet and an actual key that unlocks padlocks along the trail to provide special access.

There are concessions for students, seniors and National Trust members. All school age children are free – and they receive a treasure hunt sheet for a bit of extra fun.

Things to see and do

Morphett

Morphett's Enginehouse, Burra Mines

  • The Burra Mine site - there are walking trails with interpretive signs
  • Your passport provides free entry into the restored Morphett’s Enginehouse
  • For a particularly dramatic view across the lake, stroll down to Graves Enginehouse
  • Your key allows entry to the bunker-like Powder Magazine, the oldest intact mining building in Australia
  • Just up the road you’ll get free entry to the Bon Accord Mining Complex to view a meticulously researched model of the mine and the restored mineshaft
  • A bit further north use your key again at Redruth Gaol
  • The Unicorn Brewery back in Burra township. With your key you can see the network of tunnels beneath the original brewery.

Unicorn Brewery Tunnels
Unicorn Brewery tunnels, Burra

Visit RAA Travel to book your activities and accommodation.

1 comments
voyagestic
replied 652 days ago 
Very interesting post, thank you
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