Gawler is only 44km from Adelaide, but it has a distinct character eminently worthy of its status as ‘the first country town established in South Australia’.
That character is exemplified in such singular buildings as the Phoenix Foundry and Arch built by industrialist James Marton, and the Old Eagle Foundry, whose signature iron lace still decorates the guesthouse into which it has been converted.
Gawler's Church Hill heritage area remains much as it was in colonial days, while the nearby Willamston post office has been restored to its halcyon Cobb & Co coaching period.
A long line of publicans have been dispensing beer and good cheer from behind the bar of the Old Bushman Inn whose doors first opened in 1840 and which stands as a living link in the enduring bond between Aussie men and dinkum hotels.
Regular race meetings are held on the local track and the sinisterly named Dead Man’s Pass Reserve embraces some delightful walking trails and a picnic area.