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McLaren Vale & Kangaroo Island
Short Escape

Great DrivesThis agricultural area south of Adelaide takes in everything from the idyllic wine country of McLaren Vale to rugged coastal scenery and the inlets, lakes and islands of the lower Murray River.

Travel from Adelaide via picturesque Clarendon to McLaren Flat and McLaren Vale, at the heart of this delightful southern wine region. There are over forty-five wineries here, including the historic Hardys and Seaview establishments.

You’ll then pass through almond growing country before turning off the main road to Goolwa, the last port on the Murray before the river enters the Southern Ocean. Cruise upstream on the PS Mundoo paddle steamer, visit the fascinating Signal Point Murray River Interpretative Centre, go birdwatching on Hindmarsh Island, and take a ride on the famous Cockle Train to Victor Harbor.

From Goolwa there’s a scenic drive to Middleton and Port Elliot, good spots for whale watching (May to September) and surfing, and on to Victor Harbor, an old whaling port on Encounter Bay. The highlights here include the South Australian Whale Centre, Urimbirra Wildlife Park, and taking a Clydesdale-drawn tram ride to Granite Island and its fairy penguin colony. Continue to the tip of the peninsula and Cape Jervis, the departure point for the passenger/vehicle ferry to Penneshaw on Kangaroo Island (see below).

The return journey to Adelaide then takes you to Yankalilla and its arts, crafts and antiques shops and the inviting golden sands, surfing and snorkelling of Sellicks, Aldinga and Maslin Beaches.


A visit to Kangaroo Island is a must! With a rugged coastline, superb beaches, great fishing and bushwalking, and plenty of kangaroos, koalas, sea lions and other wildlife, this is indeed a natural wonderland.

Where to Stay

Time required: 3 days are recommended, but add 3-4 days if you visit Kangaroo Island

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