Auburn, 48 kilometres south of Clare, was first settled in the 1840s. It served as a stopover for bullockies hauling copper from the Bald Hills Range fields near Burra to Port Wakefield on the Gulf of St Vincent.
The opening of the Rising Sun Hotel in 1849 gave some stability to Auburn whose steady growth can be tracked through the faithful preservation of a significant number of historic buildings.
Centerpieces of the town are a drinking fountain and bronze replica of the Auburn Hotel, once owned by the father of the one and only C.J.Dennis, creator of The Sentimental Bloke, Ginger Mick and a string of other unforgettable characters of Australian narrative verse. As a tribute to its most famous son, Auburn stages the C.J. Dennis Festival in September.
The Clare Valley, of course, represents serious wine country. Folk with time and energy on their side can explore the tasting rooms by hiking or cycling the Riesling Trail, which shadows the old railway line between Clare and Auburn.