Our South Australian Extravaganza Part 2

Our South Australian Extravaganza Part 2

In Part 1 of Our SA Extravaganza we travelled from “Paradise” NSW to Williamstown SA via Jugiong, Junee, Hay, Mildura, Paringa, Renmark, Burra and Clare.

Leaving Williamstown we were moving to the 2nd phase of the extravaganza and a three nights stay at Brown Hill Creek. To do so we decided we’d each take a different route and meet in Hahndorf for morning coffee and cake, with caravans still attached. Although our route was supposed to be the quickest and shortest, we found ourselves driving on several dirt roads, which slowed us down considerably. Patrick and Heidi arrived in Hahndorf just before us.


We wandered along the main street for quite a while, just looking at all the offerings.

We ended up at Otto’s Bakery. It had plenty of room inside, out of the cold.

Brown Hill Creek

It was only 30 minutes from Hahndorf to our new 3 night base, Brown Hill Creek Caravan Park, 10 kms from the Adelaide CBD. After setup, and a rest we went back to Hahndorf to see Hans Heysen’s Gallery.

Path to Hans Heysen’s Cottage

I came to know Heysen’s water colour paintings in my 20’s and loved how he captured the Australian trees and bush. So it was great to visit his home and studio.

Hans Heysen’s studio

Heysen frequently travelled to the Flinders Ranges to paint, driving some 450 kms from his home in a Model A Ford, with a fold up camper trailer in tow.

The Heysen designed popup camper trailer, built in 1931, beside a Model A Ford similar to the one he owned

The following day Patrick and Heidi went in search of a replacement caravan fridge vent, while Maggie and I visited Glenelg.

Glenelg Town Hall
Looking back to the Town Hall and Stanford Grand Hotel from end of Glenelg pier
A Car Show at Glenelg, with more Ferraris than I’ve ever seen in my life

I met a young Ferrari fan who was delighted to explain to me the special features of all the new models.

Fiat Abarth 595 with 1.4 litre turbo engine

As lunch hour approached, Maggie and I decide to drive south along the coast towards Seaford. On the way we discovered Brighton (SA) and stopped for “a bite to eat” at the Brighton Food & Wine Cafe – good food, wine and service.

Across the road from the cafe is the “life savers” sculpture, a pier and the Arch of Remembrance.

Mt Lofty is not far from the Brown Hill Creek camp, offering views of Adelaide from a great height, plus another opportunity for coffee and cake, so this was the place to start our second full day in Adelaide. It was cold up there that day, even wearing several layers of clothing, so we had a quick look at Adelaide through the mist, then scurried indoors for our hot morning coffee (and cake of course).

The Adelaide CBD square could hardly be seen due to the mist (post processing the photo has made it a lot clearer)

What to do for lunch? … Well … we all wondered what further culinary delights Hahndorf could offer, so we made our way there (again), chauffeured by Patrick. Lunch was at Haus Restaurant, German fare with beer the majority choice.

Spending time in Hahndorf was satisfying, as it was one of the SA places I had a strong desire to visit, even if it has become, as some say, a little less authentically “a German village”.

Another destination I had strong desire to visit was McLaren Vale, mainly because of its reputation for producing great wines, some of which I can afford.

The following day Maggie and I were a bit slow breaking camp at Brown Hill Creek, so it was agreed Patrick and Heidi would go ahead and find a nice cafe in McLaren Vale for morning coffee and Cake. They arrived about 30 minutes before us. We arrived when they’d just finished their second coffee and cake.

From McLaren Vale to our next camp, Port Willunga Tourist Park, was only 15 minutes. We had booked in there for 6 nights.

Port Willunga

Give me a home among the gum (and some other) trees – Lyrics © Brown and Johnson

That afternoon Maggie and I walked 15 minutes to the ocean, to discover the multicoloured cliff faces and green hills bathed in sunlight.

Looking south towards Aldinga
Facing north towards Lions Head Point – Maslin Beach below

Day 2 at Port Willunga Maggie and I decided to visit two McLaren Vale wineries. Our first stop was at Serafino cellar door, just over one kilometre out of the McLaren Vale township. It was a rather “schmick” place, with well priced tasting options.

We enjoyed the various wines we tasted, but the big hit was a Tawny (port) that had been aged in barrels for 30 years. It tasted just like a Fortified Vintage Shiraz – beautiful. We purchased a bottle to share with our friends, Patrick and Heidi.

View of the Serafino grounds from their cellar door verandah

Geoff Merrill is a famous McLaren Vale wine maker and I was very keen to have a wine tasting at his winery. This we did and enjoyed the tasting, so purchased a bottle of Shiraz.

From Port Willunga we also visited Victor Harbour on the south coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula. Once again Patrick chauffeured us all there and back.

Bridge to Granite Island
Stock hours used to pull a tram over the bridge to Granite Island

Driving through the outskirts of Victor Harbour we saw a mansion in the distance, perched on top of a hill. It was a summer residence built for Alexander Hay and his wife circa 1880. They called it Mt Breckan. Following Hay’s death in 1898 a fire destroyed much of residence. It was rebuilt as an exclusive guest house. It as been used for many purposes since then, but now the land around the mansion has been sub-divided and is being developed as an exclusive housing estate.

Heading back to camp we stopped for lunch at the Victory Hotel, Sellicks Hill. A great place to eat, with friendly service and their own label wines.

On the fourth day of our stay at Port Willunga we rose early for the 1 hour drive to Cape Jervis and an 8.30am appointment with the Kangaroo Island Ferry. Both caravans and our Jeep were left at the caravan park, as Patrick once again offered to drive the four of us in his Prado for the next two days.

Kangaroo Island

The Kangaroo Island Ferry is a lot smaller than I’d expected, but it did accommodate a lot of vehicles in this space
Brown Beach
Patrick leading the charge to The Oyster Farm at American River

At the Oyster Farm Shop we had fresh oysters at around 11 am. This was the first time on our SA trip that we had something other than coffee and cake for morning refreshments.

Aurora Ozone Hotel, Kingscote

Lunch was at Aurora Ozone Hotel, Kingscote – great KI wine and food with friendly service.

After lunch I left the restaurant without my phone. I didn’t realise my mistake until later that afternoon approximately 100 kms from the hotel. Maggie phoned to make certain the staff had found it. They had and gladly put it in their safe for me to collect the next day.

Further north to the coast and a little west is Emu Bay.

Emu Bay Jetty

60 kms from Emu Bay on the north coast is Seal Bay on the south coast, where we visited the Sea Lion colony.

View of Seal Bay from just outside the visitors Centre – there is a fee for entering the area
The board walks and observation decks offer plenty of space for viewing and photography.
Sea Lion pup feeding, while mother sleeps
Lots of scars on this large sea lion

After an early rise that morning and a busy day site seeing, the drive from Seal Bay to our overnight accomodation seemed to be a long one (much longer than our electronic maps suggested).

Sunset at Western KI Caravan Park, Karata

Day 2 on Kangaroo Island began with a visit to Cape Du Couedic on the south western tip of the Island, within the Flinders Chase National Park.

Wave after wave was forced into the cliffs of these small islands

Once again the board walks and observations decks were first class in their spaciousness, sturdiness and the views they offered.

Precariously perched observation platform above the Admirals Arch, Maggie on the left taking photos

The power of the ocean was on full display, as swells turned to waves and crashed on the rocks.

Admirals Arch can just be seen to bottom right with rushing waves ascending the sloping rocks
Australian Fur Seals playing in the rock pool
Weirs Cove Ruins
Cape Du Couedic Lighthouse

View from Weirs lookout

Still within the Flinders Chase National Park and a short drive north east of Cape Du Couedic, are The Remarkable Rocks.

Over thousands of years sea spray, wind and rain have eroded the softer surrounding rock, exposing large sections of granite, which in turn have fractured to form smaller, interestingly shaped granite sculptures resting on a granite dome.

Our travel companion Patrick scouting for alternate angles from which to photograph these amazing rocks

There was just enough time to have lunch (but where), then pick up my phone from the Kingscote Aurora Ozone Hotel and be back at Penneshaw by 4pm to catch the Ferry back to the main land. We chose the Rock Pool Cafe at Stokes Bay Beach for a late, seafood lunch … beautiful.

Stokes Bay Beach on the mid-north coast of Kangaroo Island

Arrival back at Port Willunga Caravan Park was around 6pm that night. As we were moving in different directions the next morning we had a celebration of our trip together and went to bed.

After breaking camp the next day, Maggie and I headed for home, while Patrick and Heidi went to visit friends and relatives in Victoria.

Hope you enjoyed Our South Australian Extravaganza Part 2 and feel free to leave a comment below.

Stay Safe and hopefully you will join us on our next adventure.

  • Robert R
    Posted at 16:06h, 20 June Reply

    More amazing pics. Looks like you had a great time!

    • alistairstravel
      Posted at 18:17h, 20 June Reply

      Thanks Robert, it was a rather special time.

  • John Wooc
    Posted at 18:31h, 20 June Reply

    Look forward to sharing the Port

    • alistairstravel
      Posted at 18:43h, 20 June Reply

      That bottle has already gone. We enjoyed it too much. Will have to get another one to share with you.

  • Liz Dewar
    Posted at 19:47h, 20 June Reply

    These photos are amazing Al! What a great trip x

    • alistairstravel
      Posted at 20:34h, 20 June Reply

      Thanks Liz, it was very enjoyable and certainly expanded our horizons.

  • Cliff Blackburn
    Posted at 12:30h, 21 June Reply

    I’m jealous!

    • alistairstravel
      Posted at 12:51h, 22 June Reply

      Nice to hear from you again Cliff. We have been very fortunate to travel so much within Australia and see so many wonderful places

  • ruthwc
    Posted at 16:34h, 25 June Reply

    A wonderful trip, and wonderful photos!

    • Alistair Dewar Photography
      Posted at 19:45h, 27 June Reply

      Thanks Ruth, I believe you visited a lot of places we went to.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: