21 Mar 2024

Keys to the Coast: restore your soul on Yorke Peninsula

Sitting in traffic, fingers drumming on the wheel and you find your mind drifting… It’s time for a sea change, right? To hit the road out of gridlock and dose up on nature. To breathe in that sweet, salty air. Perhaps to even go wild for a change? Most of all… to restore your city-slicking soul! 

Sure. You’ve got the idea, but you have no gear… Don’t stress. We’ve got you sorted. With a year-round coastal playground sitting just a stone’s throw from Adelaide, just set your out-of-office and bring your bestie. It’s time to slow things down, the Yorke Peninsula way!

Choose Your Own Adventure

From bikes to beaches, sailing to surfing and fishing to foraging… There’s no need for rigging up roof pods or towing fancy trailers! Our locals have you well and truly covered. Here’s a few ways to make your holiday about as care-free as that Southern Ocean breeze…

See us from the Saddle.

Get your legs turning on an epic odyssey with the cool crew at Copper Trails Bike Hire. Not only do these guys specialise in hire gear – especially E-Bikes, if you’re keen to save your legs – they also do hosted tours between the Copper Coast’s most hidden gems and fabulous foodies!

Copper Trails Bike Hire
Copper Trails Bike Hire

From unearthing history at Moonta Mines to biking the beach and sampling treats in local towns, hitting the trail is all too easy with helmets, locks, carry baskets and water bottles included with every ride. From a two-hour trip to a half or full-day excursion, you’ll have everything you need to explore at your own pace – plus discount vouchers to cash in enroute (how does a free ice-cream sound)?

Keen to ditch your wheels at the other end? Just book a one-way hire from Moonta before settling at Wallaroo’s breweries and distilleries. Can’t get enough pedalling? Buy a new bike or E-Bike from the experts. Touring with your own treadly? Enjoy worry-free repairs and servicing for a hitch-free holiday. That’s just how this family business rolls.


Set Sail on the High Seas.

Is there anything more exhilarating than slicing through the ocean on an 80-foot Maxi Yacht? Former Sydney to Hobart line honours winner, Brindabella is conveniently moored in both Port Vincent and Edithburgh and available for anything from Adelaide city transfers to half and full day sails and even as a ‘mobile luxury AirBnb’ for extended voyages.

Family owned and skippered, this beauty is primed for both first-time sailors and experienced boaties, with gourmet food and beverages always on hand to toast some of the most stunning coastal scenery in Australia.

As you cut your way through crystal-clear waters, watch the Sun slip over the horizon with bubbles and freshly shucked oysters, or devour the view over a grazing platter with friends.

Hit the Waves With a Local

The Yorke Peninsula lays claim to some of the best surf beaches in the country, and whether you’re a total newbie or a seasoned wave rider, having a local show you around is key to being in the right place at the right time!


Neptunes Surf Coaching
Neptunes Surf Coaching

With an emphasis on keeping things safe and fun, Neptunes Surf Coaching and Hire will not only kit you out with surfboards, SUPs, kayaks, snorkels and wetsuits, but also unlock the secrets to some of the hidden gems around Corny Point. It’s here that dreamy dunes and windswept cliffs meet Southern Ocean swells, beautiful bays and calm coves, and their private and group tours and lessons will help make the most of an aquatic wonderland.

With seasoned coaches and expert local knowledge, this crew will get you to where the waves are breaking all-year-round, with their sunrise kayak and paddleboard tours a sublime way to spend a slow morning in paradise.

Bush Camp by the Beach

Channel your inner wild child and embrace the elements with a stay at one of the most stunningly remote slices of coastline in the region. The much-fabled Butlers Beach has been pulling beach-loving bush campers for generations, with it’s uncrowded, untouched and unbelievable shores being home to some of the most spectacular rock pools this side of heaven.

Blissfully quiet, yet within easy reach of the Marion Bay Tavern (think: hot dinner, cold beers and an onsite shop for life’s necessities), there’s plenty of space to park your campervan, pitch a tent or roll out a swag, with loads of protected sites fringed by dunes, bushland and impossibly perfect waters.

With hot showers and toilets and steady supply of rainwater, going back to basics will not only score you million-star nights and a blissful beach holiday, but also the exclusivity of snorkelling the iconic Hillocks Drive Rock Pools at your leisure. Oh, and how about those dreamy Ocean Pods too?

Hillocks Drive Ocean Pods
Hillocks Drive Ocean Pods


Catch and Cook Your Own

You can’t get any fresher than a succulent seafood feast, plucked by your very own hands! Joining passionate local fisherman, Kim Lau on a journey from ocean to plate, you’ll find the waters of Yorke Peninsula are literally teeming with life on his Catch N Cook World Tour.


Catch n Cook World Tour
Catch n Cook World Tour


Catering for anyone from total beginners to seasoned anglers and divers, tours focus on sustainable and responsible fishing with a unique culinary focus, ensuring you’ll not only snag our most mouth-watering delicacies, but a decedent dinner-date like no other.

As much about life’s simple pleasures as it is about ‘the catch of the day’, feel the unbridled joy of scooping crabs from the sands of Ardrossan beach or the deep-sea thrills of hooking a giant tuna for a sumptuous sushi feast. In fact, you’ll feed your soul as well as your stomach, taking only what’s needed and leaving memories that last a lifetime.

Tap Your Inner Creative

Sure, our coastline is one amazing canvas and it’s all too easy to be inspired by all that sun, surf and sand! But you’ll also find it pretty easy to reward your creative soul, and if your inner artist or culinary genius is just dying to be revealed, here’s how to create a lasting memory of your trip…

At Warooka’s Ballara Art and Lifestyle Retreat beginners, hobbyists and experienced snappers will all relish capturing our land and seascapes on a hosted photography tour, with a century-old homestead as your base. With a resident photographer as your guide, you’ll access some of our most stunning spots - when the light’s just right - from glistening white beaches to pink salt lakes, rich farmlands and rustic ruins, plus night skies to drop any astro-lover’s jaw.


Lakun Mara weaving workshops
Lakun Mara weaving workshops


Get hands-on in a weaving workshop with renowned Aboriginal artist Sonya Rankine and you’ll learn all about the rich culture and traditions of the Ngarrindjeri and Ngadjuri people. Using natural fibres and age-old practices to create your very own basket or mat, a Lakun Mara (“Weaving Hand”) class can even be booked to take place at your accommodation.

Look out for Sunny Hill Distillery’s regular Paint and Sip workshops with Pallette Paint Events, where a gourmet grazing table and in-house cocktails will fuel your inner Picasso. Whether it’s a fun night out with your main squeeze or a bevy of your besties, you’ll be supplied with all materials and a guided art class to create your very own masterpiece!

If you’re keen to add something unique to the family jewel box, watch out for silversmith Jasmine Swales’ regular jewellery making workshops in Marion Bay (or book her to come to you). With a passion for marine conservation and sustainability, pieces are created from reclaimed sea glass and sterling silver, with your imagination playing guide to an ethically sourced heirloom.


Swales Silver
Swales Silver


If you’re up for something totally different, forge new friendships - and blistering hot steel - with the Yorke Peninsula Blacksmiths and Lost Skills Association. As the gnarled old hands of these Minlaton maestros heat and hammer their metal creations, you’ll be right in the thick of the action, with Rope Making and Whip plaiting also on the agenda.

Replenish Your Palate

From coast to country, there’s no leaving your appetite at home around here. With some of the best plate to paddock experiences in the nation, it’s time to ditch your diet plan. Here’s where to get a mouthful of magic while you’re here…

For a true ‘crop to drop’ experience Sunny Hill Distillery is the perfect place to whet your whistle in between beaches. Set atop the rolling hills of Arthurton, this family-owned favourite overlooks the very wheat and barley fields that produce their award-winning whiskey and vodka. With a range stretching as far as those Spencer Gulf horizons, spirit lovers will also enjoy a tipple of their in-house gin, rum and brandy, with a private behind-the-scenes tour with the owner (a.k.a. farmer and distiller) a genuine feast for the senses. After smelling, touching and tasting botanicals, join your hosts on the deck to soak in those peachy panoramas with your favourite drop in hand.


Sunny Hill Distillery
Sunny Hill Distillery


Vino afficionados will enjoy a splash of the unconventional at Barley Stacks Wines, where they’ve truly ‘gone against the grain’ to establish the first commercial vineyard and winery on barley belt country. Ingenious farmer Lyall Schulz has spent years pouring his heart and soul into the rich soils around Maitland, turning this broadacre farm into a sustainable success story. Keeping the environmental footprint low for his range of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Viognier, wines here are the embodiment of the terroir, and perfectly paired with an in-house pizza or platter. Take a private tour or a tasting to enjoy the best of it!

In Stansbury, the turquoise waters of Gulf St Vincent are the perfect micro-climate for premium Australian oysters. Here, Pacific Estate Oysters tend their expert hands to three fully sustainable leases, with the opportunity to hop in their boat, throw on a set of waders and pluck these juicy morsels fresh from the farm. Joining their ‘Deckie for Day’ tour will not only get you waist deep in baskets and racks, but also the full lowdown on this marvellous mollusc’s lifecycle. After hauling your catch up onto the deck, you’ll score a masterclass on the art of shucking before slurping these plump pearlers straight from their shell.

Stay in Style

Let’s face it. There’s nothing like laying your head down in the heart of town, staying with a local legend or kicking back in comfort by the coast. Here’s a few spots to tick all those heavenly hotel boxes while you’re living it up in paradise…

Rest up at Wallaroo Marina Apartments and you’ll not only be a short stroll or ride from the town centre, but also the legendary jetty (anglers, take note!) and safe swimming areas, with epic views along the powder white sands of North Beach. With a full deck of waterfront suites and apartments, this place also hires kayaks, paddleboards and bikes, making your jaunts up and down the coast all too easy. Did we mention the Coopers Alehouse restaurant next door? Head down for dinner to score the top of the Yorke on tap!

At Ballara Art and Lifestyle Retreat you’ll find a rural retreat that blends classic country Australia and unbridled creativity, with artists, photographers and dreamers all drawn to it’s stone, wood, and all things good. This place oozes old world charm, with a nightly sunset to die for - as anyone who’s gazed across those golden paddocks will attest. With the ocean as your horizon and the township on your doorstep, you’ll find a Zen moment or two at the local Pilates studio, plus a killer caffeine hit at the local coffee van. Just don your sweats and pick your poison at the legendary Hoodie Café!

The highly Instagrammable Bayside Glamping & Co is the ultimate in coastal cool, pulling pretty things from all over the country to snap up a storm. Turning more heads than tides, their luxurious bell tents are stunning, stylish and sophisticated, with pastel skies and the shimmering sea as your backdrop to boho bliss. With their tranquil Tiny House also on site, this place is off-grid, off-centre and off-the-charts, with gentle call of nature on your doorstep.

Seafire Beach House, Foul Bay
Seafire Beach House, Foul Bay

You came on holiday to go ‘yonder’, right? Enter Yondah Beach House and its little sister Seafire, who’ll cater to all your decadent desires in pure five-star accommodated luxury. Here, every single whim is catered to across 300 acres of secluded seafront splendour, with wild, untamed cliffs and glistening white dunes providing all the drama for your romantic retreat. From the plated perfection of your private chef to melting moments with an in-house massage, the ocean views are other-worldly, and the memories will last a lifetime. 

The Yorke Peninsula is the traditional lands of the Narungga (Nharangga) people, who have lived on, and cared for, this country since the beginning of time. We work, live and travel on Nharannga Banggara [Country], and we take time away from those pursuits to acknowledge and pay our deep respects to the Nharangga Elders of the past and present. 

Today, it is essential that we continue to care for and protect our spectacular natural environment. Tread lightly and leave no trace. Learn more about responsible and respectful travel on Yorke Peninsula.