Thanks to a mild climate and its tranquil, white sandy beaches, Arno Bay, the tiny Eyre Peninsula village that never realised its dream to become a strategic port and railhead, has found its destiny as a small fishing resort.
One of the prime fishing spots is the jetty onto which clippers once unloaded fertiliser to enrich the impoverished peninsula soils. The nearby boat ramp gives access to the rich off-shore fishing grounds. One of the favoured beach-fishing spots is Redbanks, 6 km to the north, where catches regularly include King George whiting, snapper and mulloway.
And if fishing is in your blood you will be fascinated by a tour of the Clean Sea Aquaculture complex which produces abalone spat and finfish fingerlings.
Folklore offers several explanations for the town’s name, and the most romantic traces back to Matthew Flinders on his circumnavigation of Australia. As his ship, Investigator, sailed up Spencer Gulf, the lookout is said to have cried out: ‘Land ahoy.’ As the story goes, Flinders responded with: ‘Ah! No bay there.’ The grand Arno Bay Hotel is the social centre of town.