Suggested Itineraries: Coast, Outback and Wildlife
Make the most of your stay in South Australia with one of these touring itineraries.
The “Flinders Loop” will give you a mix of wine, wildlife and outback. The Adelaide to Melbourne touring route will provide wine, waves and spectacular coast; the Fleurieu/Kangaroo Island drive will blend sea, vine and wildlife.
The Flinders Loop (4 Days/900 kilometres)
From Adelaide go through Clare Valley wine country; home of first-class Rieslings and gorgeous vales. Drive to Melrose, a beautiful country town and then into the arid Flinders Ranges. Explore Wilpena Pound and “time-travel” through Brachina Gorge. You’ll arrive at the Prairie Hotel a terrific outback pub in Parachilna, with a population of just five! The pub has been there for over 100 years serving cold beer. It’s known for its “Feral Platter” of kangaroo, camel and goat! From here you’ll start the Oodnadatta Track with a stop at Coward Springs; desert wetlands where you can relax in geothermal pools. Stop at the edge of mighty Lake Eyre, the world’s biggest salt lake or see it from a scenic flight from William Creek. Visit the William Creek Hotel, the world’s most isolated pub!
In Coober Pedy, stay in one of the underground hotels and spend a day on a tour of the town and nearby opal mines. This is your chance to fossick for the precious stone and maybe strike it rich…
Adelaide to Melbourne (5 Days/1000 kilometres)
One of the most famous road trips in Australia. You’ll enjoy the legendary wine region of McLaren Vale and the seaside towns of Victor Harbor and Goolwa (home of the Cockle Train steam railway). Head south you’ll come to the wetlands of the Coorong National Park; a huge strip of towering sand dunes, with salt water on one side and fresh water on the other, visited by a quarter of Australia’s wading birds. Next stop is the World Heritage Listed Naracoorte Caves; if you’re feeling adventurous, put on overalls and headlamp to explore in deep dark spaces. The Coonawarra wine region is home to vines and vales, with cellar doors that sell internationally renowned wines. At the town of Robe be sure to order some fresh lobster. From here, cross the Victorian border and begin the Great Ocean Road. Enjoy a spectacular coastal drive on the way to the Victorian capital, Melbourne.
Fleurieu and Kangaroo Island (5 Days/600 kilometres)
Leave Adelaide for McLaren Vale, the famous Shiraz wine region that has hills on one side and beaches on the other. This is great countryside to explore; small roads lead to boutique wine producers and some terrific restaurants. Keep going south to Cape Jervis for the 45-minute ferry ride to Penneshaw on Kangaroo Island.
It takes about two hours to drive around the island on the few main roads. If you stop at all the attractions along the way, the same drive could take weeks! Most of the island’s roads are small and unsealed (dirt), in fact there is more than 1600 kilometres (1000 miles) of them, many lead to something beautiful, interesting and wild. Be sure to enjoy all the main attractions; Seal Bay (walk among sea lions), Remarkable Rocks, Kingscote and Flinders Chase National Park. Do some exploring on these lonely country roads, you’ll be amazed what you might find.
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