Aldinga Conservation Park


Aldinga Conservation Park is home to a diverse range of rare plants and is recognised as a significant area for the conservation and protection of the region's flora and fauna. The park is of considerable spiritual and cultural significance to the Kaurna people who today maintain their connection with Country.

Proclaimed in January 2022, the park is situated on the land formerly occupied by Aldinga Scrub Conservation Park and the adjacent Aldinga Washpool.

The size of the park equates to about 340 hectares which includes the high biodiversity and valuable habitat.

Situated in the Willunga sub-basin, it features an impressive backdrop of sand dunes, sand blows (mobile dunes) and remnant coastal vegetation.

The Aldinga Washpool area is home to swamp plants of conservation significance, including a threatened coastal saltmarsh which is nationally listed as a vulnerable threatened ecological community.

Lacy coral lichen, nardoo, hairy sedge and several species of orchids are among the park's rare species of flora. Remember to look out for the short-beaked echidnas, lizards, bats and the diverse range of birds that live in the park.

Opening hours

Open daily.

Closures and safety

This park is closed on days of Catastrophic Fire Danger and may also be closed on days of Extreme Fire Danger.

You can determine the current fire danger rating by checking the Fire Ban District map on the CFS website.

Check the CFS website or call the CFS Bushfire Information Hotline 1800 362 361 for:

Listen to your local area radio station for the latest updates and information on fire safety.

Contact details

Visitor information, bookings and park management:

Victor Harbor National Parks and Wildlife Service Office
Phone: (+61 8) 8552 0300

Emergency contacts:

Medical, fire (including bushfire) and police emergency situations
Phone: Triple Zero (000)

Police Assistance
Phone: 131 444 for non-urgent police assistance

National Parks and Wildlife Service SA – After-hours duty officer
Phone: 0427 556 676

Injured wildlife:

Within the park
Please contact Victor Harbor National Parks and Wildlife Service Office on (08) 8552 0300 or the after-hours duty officer on 0427 556 676 (outside of business hours).

Outside of the park
Please contact a local wildlife rescue group

Marine mammals
If you find a sick or stranded marine mammal (including whales, seals, sea lions and dolphins), please contact Victor Harbor National Parks and Wildlife Service Office on (08) 8552 0300 or the after-hours duty officer on 0427 556 676 (outside of business hours)

When to visit

Visit in spring to enjoy a stunning range of wildflowers as the park bursts into colour.

Getting there

Aldinga Conservation Park is located 46 km south of Adelaide, on the coastline of the Gulf of St Vincent, between the townships of Aldinga Beach and Sellicks Beach.

From Adelaide, take Main South Road and turn right at Aldinga Beach Road. Bitumen and gravel roads provide conventional vehicle access to the park boundary.

Visitors cannot drive into the park. Walkers can enter via stiles or gates at the corner of Wattle Avenue and Acacia Terrace, Quandong Avenue, Fraser Street, Boomerang Avenue and Cox Road. A small car park is located on the corner of Fraser and Dover Streets.

Public transport

You can catch an Adelaide Metro bus to Lower Esplanade which is approximately 650 m to the park.

Assistance dogs

Assistance dogs are permitted in most public places and are therefore welcome in South Australia’s parks and reserves. Assistance dogs must be appropriately restrained on a lead and remain under your effective control at all times while in a park or reserve.

As per the dogs in parks and reserves policy, if the dog is not an accredited assistance dog, they must be trained to assist a person with a disability to alleviate that disability and meet standards of hygiene and behaviour appropriate for a dog in a public place. However, refusal may be given if the person with the disability is unable to produce evidence the dog is an assistance dog with the appropriate training.

Before taking your assistance dog into a park that does not normally allow dogs, it is highly recommended that you contact us so we can provide you with the latest information on any potential hazards within specific parks that may affect your dog. Please contact the park via the contact details provided under the contact tab or contact the visitor service centre via email or on Facebook.

Dogs not allowed

Dogs are not permitted in this park.

Discover which parks you can walk your dog in on our find a park tool or read 12 dog-friendly walks in Adelaide Parks by Good Living for inspiration.


There are no facilities in the park. Trails exist in the area formerly dedicated to Aldinga Scrub Conservation Park, however access is limited in the washpool section of the park. Please refer to the Aldinga Conservation Park map for further detail.

Please ensure you carry sufficient water, food and supplies for your entire visit. It is also a good idea to let a responsible person know of your intended movements and when you expect to return.

Useful information

  • Important: Collection of firewood within National Parks is prohibited. Dead wood plays a vital role in providing shelter for animals and adding nutrients to the soil.

Plants and animals


Aldinga Conservation Park contains a diverse range of plant communities from sedgelands and closed heaths to pink gum woodlands and mallee box. These plants, adapted to the sandy soils, help stabilise the sand dunes and help prevent sand blows.

Low woodlands and heath communities cover most of Aldinga Scrub. In the north-east and far eastern sections of the scrub, a low woodland of mallee box trees grows on brown sandy loam soils. Sedgelands grow in areas where the water table is close to the surface and the soil is semi-permanently waterlogged. Tall shrublands of drooping sheoak give way to low-growing coastal dune vegetation on the western side of the scrub.

Several rare species of plants are found in the park. They include lacy coral lichen, nardoo, hairy sedge and several species of orchids.


More than 166 different bird species can be seen and heard within Aldinga Conservation Park. Some are migratory and visit the area for only a few months each year. If you watch quietly you may spot mistletoe birds, rainbow bee-eaters, brown goshawks and golden whistlers.

The park’s vegetation provides a variety of host plants for 18 species of butterflies and 540 species of other insects. Brushtail possums, short-beaked echidnas, bats, geckoes and skinks live in the park. The park also provides a home for brown snakes and red-bellied black snakes.

Flora and fauna species lists

To download flora (plants) and fauna (animals) species lists for this park, use the 'Create Simple Species List' tab under 'Flora Tools' or 'Fauna Tools' in NatureMaps.

Traditional owners

Aldinga Conservation Park was part of the territory of the Kaurna people who used the area during the summer months. The area yielded a rich and bountiful supply of food and materials used for utensils. Shellfish, fish, marsupials, reptiles, birds and plant foods such as nardoo, muntries, yams and quandongs were abundant.

Prior to European settlement, the area of the park that was more recently known as the Aldinga Washpool was an important place for curing and drying possum skins by the Kaurna people. It is a significant site as part of the Tjilbruke Dreaming Trail and contains registered sites under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1988 (SA).

Aboriginal peoples have occupied, enjoyed and managed the lands and waters of this state for thousands of generations. For Aboriginal first nations, creation ancestors laid down the laws of the Country and bestowed a range of customary rights and obligations to the many Aboriginal Nations across our state.

There are many places across the state that have great spiritual significance to Aboriginal first nations. At some of these places Aboriginal cultural protocols, such as restricted access, are promoted and visitors are asked to respect the wishes of Traditional Owners.

In places where protocols are not promoted visitors are asked to show respect by not touching or removing anything, and make sure you take all your rubbish with you when you leave.

Aboriginal peoples continue to play an active role in caring for their Country, including in parks across South Australia.

European history

Aldinga Conservation Park is situated in an area known as the Willunga sub-basin. This was formed by red clays being washed down from the Willunga Hills over several thousand years. Sands from the ocean floor have been deposited over the clays and an older red marine sand deposit.

Mobile sand dunes known as ‘sand blows’ occur along the western boundary of the park. These mobile dunes are backed by semi-stabilised sand dune ridges which reach up to 35 metres high. Further inland, stabilised dunes up to ten metres high alternate with swales to form an undulating sand plain.

The first European settler in the area was Mr F Culley in 1857. Before World War I the scrub area was subdivided and several attempts were made to farm. Because of the sandy soils, farming did not prove viable.

In the 1960s the Willunga Council became concerned that subdivision of the area would cause erosion. Between 1965 and 1982, 300 hectares were purchased at Aldinga to be managed by the State Planning Authority as an Open Space Reserve. In 1985 the reserve was declared Aldinga Scrub Conservation Park.

In 2018, local community support led to the establishment of an Aldinga Washpool Working Group to see the Washpool and adjacent Aldinga Scrub Conservation Park protected in its entirety.

In January 2022, the Aldinga Washpool, one of Adelaide’s last remaining coastal freshwater and estuarine lagoon systems was added to Aldinga Scrub Conservation Park and proclaimed as the Aldinga Conservation Park.

See and do


Walking trails of varying lengths provide the opportunity to explore the park’s habitats and unique plant life. Take the time to stop, look and listen for animals and birdlife. You will hear a wide range of sounds and see a variety of plants. During spring the park is ablaze with wildflowers making any walk an enjoyable experience.

Grade 3 - Suitable for most ages and fitness levels

Coral lichen circuit (1 hour loop, 1.1 km)

This self-guided trail is perfect for exploring the local vegetation communities, including a rare colony of lacy coral lichen (Cladia ferdinandii). The trail includes a series of green markers which can be used in conjunction with the walking guide brochure produced by the Friends of Aldinga Scrub.

Wattle Loop (4.8 km)

This longer hike allows you to lose you track of time as you meander through the shady trails of Aldinga Scrub. Although relatively flat, the sandy trail makes for some soft trekking, so take plenty of drinking water. Visit in Spring to see a variety of Wattles and wildflowers burst into colour and watch the park come to life.

Boomerang Loop (2.9 km)

Tread lightly as you duck under remnant Pink Gums and loop through the delicate ecosystem that supports a diversity of unique plants and animals. The Boomerang trail is suitable for walkers with a moderate level of fitness. Allow extra time to stop, look and listen for the wide variety of birds that fill the tree tops with song along the way.

Willunga Basin Trail (3.5 km)

The Aldinga Scrub hosts a short section of the 130km Willunga Basin Trail, which winds its way around and across the Willunga Basin, taking walkers through a diverse landscape of bushland, forests, vineyards, almond groves, parks and beaches. For more information on this trail, please refer to



Fishing is permitted at accessible beaches within the park, make sure you are familiar with fishing restrictions before casting off.

Not permitted

Fishing is not permitted at creeks, dams and waterways within the park - this includes fishing for marro and yabbies via the use of nets.

Stay in the park

Camping is not permitted within this park.

  • Use Find a Park to discover which parks you can camp in.

Accommodation is available close to this park at Aldinga Beach and Sellicks Beach.

Mountain biking

There are no designated mountain biking trails in this park.


Want to help?

If you think you might be interested in volunteering opportunities within this park please contact our Volunteer Support Unit.

Want to join others and become a Park Friend?

If you are interested in volunteering in Aldinga Conservation Park, reach out to the Friends of Aldinga Scrub to learn about opportunities they offer. Otherwise, to find out more about Friends of Parks groups please visit Friends of Parks South Australia.

You could join others to help look after a park. You can take part in working bees, training and other events.



The international Trail Users Code of Conduct is to show respect and courtesy towards other trail users at all times.

Ensure that you:

  • when hiking, wear sturdy shoes, a hat and sunscreen
  • be aware of weather conditions and avoid walking during the hottest part of the day
  • make sure you have appropriate weather proof clothing
  • carry enough water to be self-sufficient
  • please be respectful of other users at all times
  • stay on the designated trails and connector tracks for your own safety, and prevent the spread of declared weeds to other areas in the park
  • ensure someone knows your approximate location and expected time of return
  • take appropriate maps.
  • Walk, hike or trek - what's the difference?


Can I have a fire or barbecue?

  • Wood fires, solid fuel, gas fires and liquid fuel fires are prohibited throughout the year.
  • Ensure you are familiar with the fire restrictions for this park.

Closures and safety

This park is closed on days of Catastrophic Fire Danger and may also be closed on days of Extreme Fire Danger.

You can determine the current fire danger rating by checking the Fire Ban District map on the CFS website.

Check the CFS website or call the CFS Bushfire Information Hotline 1800 362 361 for:

Listen to your local area radio station for the latest updates and information on fire safety.

Know before you go

The area of the former Aldinga Washpool is a stormwater catchment area, receiving storm water from the locality. At this stage, there are no designated walking trails in this area of the park. If entering this area of the park, please be aware of potential stormwater flooding particularly during wet weather conditions.


Park maps


Entry fees

Come and enjoy this park for free.

Park pass

This park is not included in the park pass system.

Camping and accommodation

There is no camping or accommodation available within this park.

Other fees and permits

There are no other fees or permits associated with this park.