12 national park trails near Adelaide that are accessible with wheelchairs

12 national park trails near Adelaide that are accessible with wheelchairs

Look­ing for wheel­chair-friend­ly trails in nation­al parks? Try these options in and around Adelaide.

There’s lots of beau­ti­ful walks in Adelaide’s nation­al parks, but if you rely on a wheel­chair to get around, then con­ve­nient park­ing, flat­ter sur­faces, and facil­i­ties like toi­lets are impor­tant things to consider.

We’ve tak­en the guess­work out of it for you with this list of wheel­chair-friend­ly acces­si­ble walks in nation­al parks around Ade­laide – and some of the handy facil­i­ties nearby:


1. Wood Duck Walk – Belair Nation­al Park

Belair Nation­al Park’s Wood Duck Walk starts at the carpark and pic­nic area at Play­ford Lake, where there’s one ded­i­cat­ed acces­si­ble park­ing space. An acces­si­ble toi­let is close by, across Sir Edwin Avenue. 

The major­i­ty of the trail is bitu­men, with a few short sec­tions of hard-packed gravel.

In places, the edge of the bitu­men path has bro­ken away and there are occa­sion­al rip­ples in the sur­face from tree roots underneath.

Some parts of the path may require assis­tance. The trail is best to be com­plet­ed in a clock­wise direction.

12 national park trails near Adelaide that are accessible with wheelchairs

2. Lori­keet Loop Walk – Belair Nation­al Park

Also in Belair Nation­al Park is the Lori­keet Loop Walk, anoth­er wheel­chair-acces­si­ble trail.

Park in the acces­si­ble carpark in the Gov­ern­ment Farm 2 carpark and fol­low the signs for Lori­keet Loop along the most­ly bitu­men trail.

It’s rec­om­mend­ed to start the walk from Old Gov­ern­ment House and trav­el in an anti-clock­wise direction.

Sec­tions of the trail are short and steep and oth­er sec­tions are rough, so assis­tance may be required.

The end part of the trail climbs through the adven­ture play­ground and back up to Old Gov­ern­ment house. This sec­tion is steep and will require assistance.

There’s also an acces­si­ble toi­let in the Gov­ern­ment Farm 2 area.

3. Sir Edwin Avenue and Brady Gul­ly Track – Belair Nation­al Park

The Sir Edwin Avenue and Brady Gul­ly Track in Belair Nation­al Park is anoth­er good option for wheel­chair accessibility.

To get there, head to the Play­ford Lake carpark and fol­low the bitu­men Sir Edwin Avenue as it grad­u­al­ly climbs to the north of Play­ford Lake. Some assis­tance may be required on the ascent.

As the road lev­els out, pass to the right of the bar­ri­er that goes across the road block­ing access to cars.

About 200 m up the road you will come to an infor­ma­tion board on the right-hand side. To the right of the infor­ma­tion board you will see a trail sign that indi­cates a shared trail. This is the trail to take to return to Play­ford Lake.

The trail has a hard base with loose grav­el on the sur­face. Sec­tions of it have loose grav­el and oth­er parts are sandy, so some assis­tance may be required. This trail is about 1.7 km.

4. Black Cliff Look­out – Hal­lett Cove Con­ser­va­tion Park

Hal­lett Cove Con­ser­va­tion Park’s bitu­men path from the Boat­shed Café towards Black Cliff Look­out is a great scenic trail that is suit­able for peo­ple in wheelchairs.

The trail steep­ens con­sid­er­ably (up to 12%) on the way up, so assis­tance will be required to get up to the lookout.

The trail beyond the look­out is not an acces­si­ble trail, how­ev­er you can stop and take in the view at the top.

There are two acces­si­ble carparks, and an acces­si­ble toi­let at the Boat­shed Café.

5. Botan­i­cal Trail – Mari­no Con­ser­va­tion Park

Head to Mari­no Con­ser­va­tion Park and enter the carpark at the end of Nim­boya Road in Marino.

While there is one acces­si­ble carpark avail­able, there are no toi­lets in this park.

The Botan­i­cal Trail is 1.4 km return and offers some of Adelaide’s best views of the coast and city skyline.

The trail is a mix of hard-packed sur­face and loose dirt, and it’s rec­om­mend­ed to do the trail on a dry day as parts of it will become very mud­dy when wet. 

Along the way, there’s an acces­si­ble pic­nic spot where you can stop for a scenic lunch.

12 national park trails near Adelaide that are accessible with wheelchairs

6. Wet­lands Loop Trail – Onka­paringa Riv­er Recre­ation Park

The Wet­lands Loop trail in Onka­paringa Riv­er Recre­ation Park is a flat trail with a mix­ture of board­walk and grav­el paths.

There is an acces­si­ble carpark and toi­let at Per­rys Bend, with a ded­i­cat­ed access path to the Wet­lands Loop Trail as well as a love­ly pic­nic area with a BBQ and pic­nic tables. It is rec­om­mend­ed to do this trail on a sun­ny day, as the grav­el paths may become mud­dy in winter.

7. Punch­bowl Look­out Trail – Onka­paringa Riv­er Nation­al Park

For spec­tac­u­lar views of Onka­paringa Gorge, check out the 2 km Punch­bowl Look­out Trail in Onka­paringa Riv­er Nation­al Park.

Descend the wide, hard-packed trail to the look­out where there are a num­ber of pic­nic bench­es. Return via the same trail but note that it climbs 50 m over the space of 1 km.

The eas­i­est spot to park is at Gates 8 and 9 on Pig­got Range Road, and you’ll find toi­lets at the near­by Sun­dews Look­out at Gate 11.


8. Mori­al­ta Falls Val­ley Walk – Mori­al­ta Con­ser­va­tion Park

The 1.6 km Mori­al­ta Falls Val­ley Walk at Mori­al­ta Con­ser­va­tion Park is a good, short walk on a wide, hard-packed grav­el trail that ris­es gen­tly and reach­es just below First Falls.

The last sec­tion goes below the falls via a boardwalk.

Sec­tions of the trail have short inclines and, as it’s a Class 2 trail, some peo­ple may require assistance.

There are two acces­si­ble carparks and one acces­si­ble toi­let at the trail head.

9. Fourth Creek Trail – Mori­al­ta Con­ser­va­tion Park

Also in Mori­al­ta Con­ser­va­tion Park is the Fourth Creek Trail, which is a 3 km round-trip.

There is a short incline near the start of the trail, just beyond the Mukan­thi Play­space and after the footbridge.

The first half of the trail is com­pact­ed grav­el and the sec­ond half is bitu­men, both about 1 m wide.

10. Steub Trail – Cle­land Nation­al Park

The 7 km return Steub Trail in Cle­land Nation­al Park is an excel­lent alter­na­tive to the ever-pop­u­lar Water­fall Gul­ly to Mount Lofty Sum­mit Hike, and you should allow about 3 to 5 hours for wheel­chair users.

You can start the trail from either the bot­tom, at Cle­land Wildlife Park, or the top, at Mount Lofty Summit.

Start­ing from the bottom

At the bot­tom end, the path starts at the entrance to Cle­land Wildlife Park – not far from the admin­is­tra­tion build­ing. There are two acces­si­ble carparks avail­able at Cle­land Wildlife Park, as well as an acces­si­ble toilet.

The track sur­face is a hard base with a recy­cled prod­uct called bitu­mate’ on the top, which makes for a nice, smooth ride.

The first 500 to 700 m is rel­a­tive­ly flat and easy, but after this the trail starts to climb. At this point, most peo­ple will require assis­tance to get up the inclines.

At points along the path, there are switch-backs with berms which have a pitch that’s dif­fi­cult to nav­i­gate in a wheel­chair, but doable with assistance.

Start­ing from the top

There are two options if you’re start­ing from the top:

  • Park in the Mount Lofty Sum­mit acces­si­ble parks locat­ed with the ser­vice carparks. The start of the path is made of slab rocks, so fol­low it around and down the hill.
  • Park in the carpark next to the entrance to the Hey­sen trail. This carpark is quite large and suit­able for peo­ple who use wheel­chairs, but there are no ded­i­cat­ed acces­si­ble carparks. Just across from this carpark space is the begin­ning of the Steub trail. The trail from here gen­er­al­ly has gen­tle inclines and switch-backs with gen­tle pitch­ing berms that are easy to nav­i­gate and a lot of fun to go down. Assis­tance is required to get back up the hill – even with the gen­tler slopes.

There is one acces­si­ble toi­let inside the Mount Lofty Sum­mit café and gift shop.

12 national park trails near Adelaide that are accessible with wheelchairs


11. Lake Dis­cov­ery Loop – Para Wirra Con­ser­va­tion Park

The Lake Dis­cov­ery Loop at Para Wirra Con­ser­va­tion Park is a 1 km trail.

It’s rec­om­mend­ed to start from the East Lake carpark and fol­low the well-sign­post­ed trail in a clock­wise direction.

The trail loops around the lake on a hard-packed grav­el trail with a few slight ris­es that may require some assistance.

You’ll find acces­si­ble toi­lets at Gawler View pic­nic area, Wirra Camp­ground pic­nic area and Para Wirra Cen­tral pic­nic area.

12 national park trails near Adelaide that are accessible with wheelchairs

12. Lit­tle Quar­ry Loop – Anstey Hill Recre­ation Park

The Lit­tle Quar­ry Loop starts at Anstey Hill Recre­ation Park’s main carpark in the for­mer quar­ry, and winds its way around in a 650 m con­crete loop.

You can find acces­si­ble park­ing spaces at Gate 1 near Ellis Cot­tage, and the toi­lets are right next door – one is accessible.

Inter­est­ed to know about oth­er nation­al parks with acces­si­ble fea­tures? Read our sto­ry aboutAde­laide parks with acces­si­ble fea­turesorregion­al parks with acces­si­ble fea­tures.

This sto­ry was orig­i­nal­ly post­ed in March 2021.

This con­tent was pro­duced in part­ner­ship with  Good Living