9 Oct 2018
Our Eyre Peninsula road trip kicks off in Streaky Bay, heading down along the cliffs of Waterloo to Port Lincoln’s abundant southern tip, and up to Whyalla.
Hit the Road
Incredible views and pristine blues - welcome to the Eyre Peninsula. With remote stretches of white sand and rugged clifftops, world-class waves and laid-back locals, you’ll forget there’s anything more to life than cruising down this beautiful piece of South Australia.
We’re kicking off the ultimate Aussie adventure in Streaky Bay, guiding you down along the cliffs of Waterloo to Port Lincoln’s abundant southern tip, and up to Whyalla. Experience the unbelievable colours and raw beauty, historic natural formations and superb seafood. This gorgeous trail is a breath of fresh air for every traveller.
It was the streaky reflections of light on seaweed and water that saw this town renamed, in homage to the ocean.
Your first stop will have you exploring incredible natural formations and discovering colonies of sea lions, before kicking back at Discovery Parks - Streaky Bay Foreshore, with a belly full of fresh abalone.
Whistling Rocks & the Blowholes
Reminding you of nature’s raw power, the waves here push huge pockets of air upwards through holes in the cliff, creating an eerily loud whistling noise. When the tide is high, the blowholes erupt magnificently, shooting water into the sky. Both are totally unmissable.Whale season mid-May and early October each year.
Ocean Eco Experience
Getting up close and personal with pods of dolphins and sea lions so playful they call them the ‘puppies of the sea’. Founded on the love of aquaculture and conservation, this Baird Bay experience is a magical memory that will last forever.
These geological wonders were formed under the ground about 1500 million years ago, rising from the flat surrounding plains to become Australia’s original rock stars. Catch them at sunset for the ultimate photo opportunity.
In the last ice age these islands were attached to the mainland, severed by rising sea levels. Now they’re part of the Waldegrave Islands Conservation Park and provide sanctuary for wildlife like Cape Barren geese and fairy penguins.
4WDriving in Gunyah Beach Dunes
Take a worthy detour off the Highway, up into the white-mammoth dunes of Gunyah beach, in Coffin Bay National Park.
Strictly for high clearance 4WDriving, this mesmerising adventure is within a wild landscape, so warnings should be heeded.
Next up, a dusty town with a dark past, rugged coastline and some of Australia’s heaviest waves. Elliston, and its Waterloo Bay, are speckled with calm swimming beaches and waters abundant with fish, boasting one of the most breathtaking views on the Eyre Peninsula.
This one is worth a detour if you have the time (about seven hours drive from Discovery Parks - Streaky Bay Foreshore). Dry as a bone, she glows a mighty pink - the stunning Salt Lake in Lake Gairdner National Park is not to be missed. Surrounded by deep red earth, it really is a gem in the arid landscape.
Calmer waters make this the perfect place to teach the kids how to reel in some garfish or whiting. Mesmerising sand dunes and coastal camping opportunities make this stop a dream to visit.
Elliston Coastal Trails
Rug up and get your walking shoes on, because this is the best way to soak up 13.6km of incredible views from Cape Finnis to Little Bay Surf Break. Stop to learn about the history of Elliston and spot sculptures dotted along the clifftops.
The deep red earth, azure waters, blushing salt lakes and great whites of Port Lincoln will redefine how you imagine the wild. Bring your fishing rod along and throw a line out to the thriving ‘Seafood Capital of Australia’, or take a dip in the waters of a dreamily remote national park.
On your way up to Whyalla, take a short easterly detour to explore the gypsum dunes alive with mallee and the salty stillness of Lake Gilles. Listen to the crunch as you walk over the saline lake, get lost in its reflections, and watch for abundant birdlife.
Coffin Bay National Park
Perfect for soaring down sand dunes, or hiking through stunning landscapes alive with native flora. Wade in sheltered bays, brave pumping swell, fish, scuba dive and wind surf - all in a place so remote, you could do it all starkers.
Calypso Star Shark Cage Diving
Jump in the car before you spook yourself out of it. This charter is not for the faint-hearted, but it’s an adrenaline rush like no other. Safe in your submerged steel cage, get up close and personal with these beautiful (and slightly terrifying) creatures of the deep.
Your last stop on this epic Aussie journey was named after the Aboriginal Barngarla word meaning ‘place with deep water’. The coastal town will fascinate you with incredible marine life, maritime history and ancient natural phenomenon, all within 40 minutes of the Discovery Parks - Whyalla on the foreshore.
Point Lowly Lighthouse
Just a 30-minute drive from your home base at the Whyalla Foreshore, Point Lowly lighthouse protrudes from magnificent ocean surroundings. Explore the maritime history of an icon once devotedly manned for 90 years.
If you’ve never seen an Australian giant cuttlefish in the wild, this is one of the best places to dive and snorkel with them. The world’s largest cuttlefish migrate here to breed, growing up to 50cm long and hypnotising prey with an extraordinary range of iridescent colours. Giant cuttlefish season between the months of May and August.
National Trust Folk Museum
While passing through Cowell, enjoy the town’s charming country hospitality and peruse the fascinating relics at the National Trust Folk Museum. If you love local history, this is the perfect place to stop and stretch your legs.
This travel feature was published in G’DAY Magazine.