While it may be most known for being Australia’s food and wine capital, South Australia is a land of dreamy desert-scapes, rugged coastlines, some of the oldest mountains on the planet, and islands that are abundant with wildlife. From cosmopolitan cities to lush, sprawling vineyards, these are some of South Australia’s most popular destinations.
Originally settled by the Germans in the 1840s, Barossa Valley still retains its German ambiance, and is also famous all over the world for being the oldest wine producing region in the country, as well as one of the finest wine producing regions overall. Winery tours are the most popular activity here, with over 150 wineries, as well as 80 cellar doors, to choose from. A large number of the wineries also have their own restaurants on site, where they make use of the freshest of local produce to cook up innovative and seasonal meals.
A three and a half hour drive from Adelaide, Port Augusta is often referred to as the crossroad of South Australia, as the roads from here travel all across the region. This area is steeped in history, from the Wadlata Outback Centre, which will take you back to the time when dinosaurs roamed the land, to the Homestead Park Pioneer Museum, which is over 130 years old. For those who want to learn more about the flora and fauna of South Australia’s outback, the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Gardens is the place to go, showcasing a range of drought-resistant plants.
The third largest island in Australia, Kangaroo Island is, as you would expect from the name, packed with kangaroos, as well as many other native animals, from seals to koalas to penguins. In addition to the wildlife, the island is also home to the Flinders Chase National Park, as well as the Kangaroo Island Farm Gate and Cellar Door Trail, which is a must-do walk for food enthusiasts, as it showcases the incredible fresh foods that are grown in this unspoiled landscape.
South Australia is home to endless walking trails, but the Heysen Trail is considered to be one of the best of them all. Stretching out for 1200 kilometers, those who want to really explore South Australia will be able to take in all of its natural diversity from the trail, while those who are not such avid walkers can easily hike just a small section instead. The trail passes by everything from the Kuitpo forest plantations to the gorges of the Flinders Desert to the soaring peaks of Mount Lofty, and even the Barossa Valley.
South Australia is a vast region, and there are many different ways in which you can explore it. Whether you spend your days eating and drinking your way around the Barossa Valley, or don your hiking boots and walk the Heysen Trail, South Australia is the perfect destination for those who want to spend some time off the beaten track and appreciate some of the country’s hidden gems.