4 spectacular walks in Fleurieu Peninsula national parks

4 spectacular walks in Fleurieu Peninsula national parks

Love bush­walk­ing? Here are four walks in Fleurieu Penin­su­la nation­al parks that you can­not miss.

Almost an hour’s dri­ve away from Ade­laide, South Australia’s Fleurieu Penin­su­la boasts some of the most strik­ing land­scapes in the state.

Much of this pic­ture-per­fect scenery can be found with­in the nation­al parks that scat­ter the peninsula.

Bush­walk­ing in these nation­al parks is a fan­tas­tic way of mak­ing the most of your time on the Fleurieu Penin­su­la, allow­ing you to explore the pris­tine beach­es, excep­tion­al coastal views and unspoilt wildlife of this region.

Here are four of our favourite walks in the region’s nation­al parks:

1. Aaron Creek Cir­cuit Hike at Deep Creek Nation­al Park

3 hours return (5.5 km)

This chal­leng­ing but reward­ing trail is one of the hid­den gems of Deep Creek Nation­al Park.

Start­ing at the Aaron Creek pic­nic area and car park, near Goon­dooloo Cot­tage on Blow­hole Beach Road, this walk will take you straight out to the coast where can you see spec­tac­u­lar views of the South­ern Ocean waves crash­ing into the rocky cove below.

If you’re hik­ing in the win­ter, you might even catch a glimpse of a cas­cad­ing water­fall on your way. 

4 spectacular walks in Fleurieu Peninsula national parks

2. Punch­bowl Look­out Trail at Onka­paringa Riv­er Nation­al Park

1 hour return (2 km)

At the doorstep of the Fleurieu Penin­su­la in Adelaide’s south­ern sub­urbs is Onka­paringa Riv­er Nation­al Park.

Less than an hour’s dri­ve from Ade­laide, the park fea­tures dis­tinc­tive wet­lands and flood­plains cre­at­ed by the Onka­paringa Riv­er that spills onto the plains.

While this has cre­at­ed a stun­ning land­scape for the park, more impor­tant­ly this area con­serves impor­tant fish breed­ing habi­tat, hun­dreds of native plant and ani­mal species, and pro­vides habi­tat for endan­gered migra­to­ry birds.

The 2 km Punch­bowl Look­out Trail takes you on a leisure­ly stroll through grey box wood­land to the look­out above The Punch­bowl, for spec­tac­u­lar views into the Onka­paringa Gorge.

This trail is per­fect for peo­ple of all abil­i­ties and is suit­able for prams and lim­it­ed mobil­i­ty access. 

Onka­paringa Hiking 

3. Wet­lands Loop Trail at Onka­paringa Riv­er Recre­ation Park

Short loop is 1 hour return (3 km) and long loop is 1.5 hours return (4.5 km)

Next door to Onka­paringa Riv­er Nation­al Park is Onka­paringa Riv­er Recre­ation Park, pop­u­lar for its tran­quil wet­lands and floodplains.

The Wet­lands Loop trail is a great way of explor­ing this park and its won­der­ful views. You can choose if you want to take the short­er 3 km loop or the longer 4.5 km loop.

There is plen­ty to dis­cov­er on this trail, with a vari­ety of wildlife such as birds, frogs and fish as well as some uncom­mon plant species to spot along the way.

This flat trail is a mix­ture of board­walks and grav­el paths and is acces­si­ble for wheel­chairs and fam­i­lies with strollers. You can also take your fur­ry best friend with you as dogs on lead are wel­come on this trail.

4 spectacular walks in Fleurieu Peninsula national parks

4. Wait­pin­ga Cliffs to Kings Beach hike at New­land Head Con­ser­va­tion Park

8 to 12 hours return (23 km)

Locat­ed on the south­ern coast of the Fleurieu Penin­su­la and 91 km south of Ade­laide, New­land Head Con­ser­va­tion Park has rolling hills, rugged cliffs and unmatched views.

With these stun­ning land­scapes, it’s no won­der the park’s 23 km Wait­pin­ga Cliffs to Kings Beach hike is a spec­tac­u­lar high­light of the long-dis­tance Hey­sen Trail that it’s part of.

Not one for the faint heart­ed, this hike begins from the Wait­pin­ga Camp­ground and fol­lows the coast above the Wait­pin­ga Cliffs, with excep­tion­al coastal views and lots of pho­to opportunities.

The trail then gen­tly climbs Ridge­way Hill, where you can spot majes­tic white-bel­lied sea-eagles if you’re lucky.

To make the most of this trail, fol­low it beyond the New­land Head Con­ser­va­tion Park up to Kings Beach.

If you’re not good with heights, you should prob­a­bly con­sid­er a dif­fer­ent trail at this park as some sec­tions of this trail get a bit close to the edge of the cliff.

4 spectacular walks in Fleurieu Peninsula national parks

Know before you go

Before you head into any of these parks, be sure to check the Nation­al Parks and Wildlife Ser­vice South Aus­tralia web­site for any entry or camp­ing fees, alerts or park clo­sures and oth­er impor­tant infor­ma­tion for your visit.

Keen to explore more of the Fleurieu Penin­su­la? Check out our blogs onnation­al parks of the Fleurieu Penin­su­laandhow to spend a day in Encounter Marine Park.

This con­tent was pro­duced in part­ner­ship with  Good Living