For everything about the FLEURIEU PENINSULA you are in the right place. From getting there, to places to visit, to the best accommodation this article summarises all your needs for the FLEURIEU PENINSULA.
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The Fleurieu Peninsula (pronounced FLOO-re-ooh) is a small triangular point of land, located just south of Adelaide. Don’t let that full you though as there are countless things to do on the Fleurieu Peninsula. Bordered by Gulf St Vincent to the west and Encounter Bay to the east, Fleurieu is famous for its fantastic wineries and beautiful beaches.
The traditional home of the Kaurna, Peramangk and Ngarrindjeri indigenous tribes, Fleurieu was settled by Europeans in 1839 and is today home to the thriving communities of Victor Harbor, Goolwa, Cape Jervis, and Normanville.
Due to the location, the Fleurieu Peninsula weather is quite similar to Adelaide’s, though it’s on average slightly cooler due to the frequent sea breezes. Any time of year is pleasant to visit, though during summer when the grape vines are flowering can be one of the prettiest.
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Getting To The Fleurieu Peninsula
To properly explore Fleurieu Peninsula, you’ll need your own car (need car hire, click here). It’s only about 45 minutes drive from central Adelaide to the northern edge of the area. Without a car, you can take a train to Seaford and then a bus to McLaren Vale, but to really explore the Peninsula it’s best to have your own wheels.
So if you’re interested in Fleurieu Peninsula things to do, read on and let’s take a look at this fascinating area!
Fleurieu Peninsula Attractions
Fleurieu Peninsula has something for everyone; whether it’s pristine swimming and surfing beaches, incredible wine, delicious food, or gorgeous nature. Even a brief glance at the map Fleurieu Peninsula shows how much coastline there is, and just how many wineries there are. So let’s check out some of the best things to do on the Fleurieu Peninsula.
Fleurieu Peninsula Wineries
By far the biggest Fleurieu Peninsula tourism draws are its world-class wineries. There’s three major wine areas on the Peninsula: McLaren Vale, Langhorne Creek, and Currency Creek. Together, these areas have almost a hundred wineries, many of which are open for tastings. McLaren Vale is by far the best known area, with a global reputation for excellent wine-making – particularly its Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, and Grenache. Some of the most famous Fleurieu Peninsula wineries include d’Arenburg, Hugh Hamilton, Mitolo, Coriole, and Hardy’s.
Swimming & Surfing Beaches
With such a long and expansive coastline, Fleurieu Peninsula beaches are top notch. Wide strips of white sand and sparkling blue water means there’s plenty of spots to dive in and explore nature’s bounty. One of the most popular beaches is Carrickalinga Beach, not far south of Sellicks Beach. At Carrickalinga, a beautiful volcanic outcrop separates the north and south arms of the beach. Surfers should head for Goolwa or Middleton Beaches, while Horseshoe Bay at Port Elliot is family friendly, with surf (sometimes large, so be weary) and frequent lifeguard patrols. Snorkelers will enjoy the onshore reef at Normanville, while the fishing and scuba diving at Second Valley Beach make it one of the best beaches Fleurieu Peninsula.
Hiking & Bushwalking
There’s plenty of great nature back on shore in Fleurieu Peninsula as well. The highlight here is definitely Deep Creek Conservation Park, with its cliffs, gorges, hilltops and remote bushland areas. With 15 walking trails, fantastic coastal views, loads of native animals, and hundreds of plant species to see, Deep Creek is one of the best places to bushwalk in the Fleurieu Peninsula. Be sure to take a picnic lunch and immerse yourself in the Australian bush. Or for something a little more sedate, consider checking out Onkaparinga River National Park, just near McLaren Vale.
Fleurieu Peninsula Road Trips
Situated so close to Adelaide, Fleurieu Peninsula has some great opportunities for road trips.
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1 or 2 Nights Fleurieu Peninsula Road Trip from Adelaide
For this road trip, we’re going to take either one or two nights touring around the Fleurieu Peninsula, largely depending on how much time you like to spend wine tasting and at the beach. Firstly, head south from Adelaide along the M2 motorway (known at the Southern Expressway), making your first stop at the Okaparinga River National Park. Get your blood pumping with a nice 90 minute walk, then head south into McLaren Vale for lunch. Spend the afternoon wine tasting, before heading south to Carrickalinga and Normanville for some relaxing beach time and a stunning sunset.
The following day, drive down to Cape Jervis at the tip of the Peninsula (and where the ferry to Kangaroo Island departs). Head westwards toward Victor Harbor, checking out whichever beaches take your fancy! Continue through to Goolwa, then turn north to the Currency Creek wineries. From here, turn back westwards and cut across country to Mount Compass, turning north for McLaren Vale again. Finish your trip with as many wine tastings as you can handle, before driving on to Adelaide.
Accommodation Fleurieu Peninsula
Looking for the best accommodation Fleurieu Peninsula? You’ve got some great options for Fleurieu Peninsula holiday rentals, caravan parks, hotels, and plenty more to choose from.
Fleurieu Peninsula Hotels & Motels
For beachfront accommodation Fleurieu Peninsula, it’s hard to beat the Anchorage Seafront Hotel in Victor Harbor. There’s also plenty of options for beach houses at Carrickalinga Beach, while if you’d prefer to stay in town, Motel Goolwa in Goolwa is affordable and good quality. If you’re after luxury accommodation Fleurieu Peninsula, maybe consider The Bluff Resort Apartments in Encounter Bay, or Trafalgar Premium Vintage Suites at Port Elliot. Or for a first-class stay among the vineyards, check out Hotel California Road Inkwell Wines in Tatachilla, near McLaren Vale. Or prefer a round of golf? Check out Links Lady Bay in Normanville, a personal favourite of mine.
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Fleurieu Peninsula Airbnb
Most Australian holiday destinations have great Airbnb options, and Fleurieu is no different. For a beachfront holiday check out Carrickalinga Beach Retreat, while if you’re a fan of glamping you’ll love Pear Tree Hollow Glamping Tent at Inman Valley. Those keen on a romantic getaway Fleurieu Peninsula should consider this Country Living Large Studio in McLaren Vale, but if you’re a large group or family looking for a holiday house Fleurieu Peninsula then Sunningdale House Central Port Elliot might be more your style.
Fleurieu Peninsula Caravan Parks
For a great caravan park Fleurieu Peninsula, check out Jetty Caravan Park on the western coast, just near Normanville. In Victor Harbor you can choose from Victor Harbor Holiday & Cabin Park, or NRMA Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park, both of which have powered and unpowered sites, cabins, and of course excellent ratings. Further east at Port Elliot you’ll find BIG4 Port Elliot Holiday Park which is another great choice. And in McLaren Vale, the McLaren Vale Lakeside Caravan Park is perennially popular.
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Fleurieu Peninsula Camping
For getting away from it all, camping Fleurieu Peninsula is a great option. Highlights include Cobbler Hill Campground and Trig Campground, both located in Deep Creek Conservation Area. Both are 2WD accessible but must be booked in advance. Further north, the brand new Pink Gum Campground at Onkaparinga River National Park is an excellent choice. As always, remember that remote campgrounds are generally unattended, so be sure to take your rubbish and leave the location as you found it.
Wineries & Restaurants Fleurieu Peninsula
Fleurieu Peninsula, and McLaren Vale in particular are home to some of the best wineries in Australia. Of particular note are d’Arenburg, with its huge and fascinating Rubik’s Cube building, simply know as the Cube. Also be sure to check out the quirky and unusual Down the Rabbit Hole winery, with its old-school double-decker bus tasting room, tree swing, and much more.
For Fleurieu Peninsula restaurants, it’s hard to beat the Mediterranean cuisine at Star of Greece in Port Willunga, with fantastic food and even better sunsets. As you’d expect, many wineries have excellent restaurants as well. Highlights here include The Gather at Coriole winery, and The Currant Shed at McLaren Flat.
As you can see, there’s no shortage of things to see and do on the Fleurieu Peninsula. With endless unspoiled beaches, fantastic wine and food, pristine nature, and clear air, it’s hard to beat for a short getaway from Adelaide, or as part of a longer trip.