Cape Spencer Lighthouse. Pic:

Innes National Park is a protected stretch of blinding white beaches, rocky coves and duneside campgrounds fronting the improbably blue waters of the Spencer Gulf, right on the southwestern tip of South Oz’s Yorke Peninsula.

It’s just about as idyllic a destination as you could dream up for a family beachside holiday, and it’s barely 300km outta Adelaide. Pretty much perfectly positioned for a lazy long weekender or even a well-planned overnight strike.

The camping is tiptop, the crowds generally sparse and there’s absolutely no shortage of protected coves to take the kiddies for a dip in the ocean, to have a cast from the jetty or beach or even get out for a surf or boogie board in the shore break.

If hiking is your thing, you’ll want to pack your boots, as the walking trails through the park are many and varied and afford some of the best coastal views in the state.


4WDING: While the majority of the park is accessible via conventional 2WD vehicle, if you’re itching to drop those tyre pressures, head down to Pondalowie Bay Beach for some sand driving and a fun day in the sun.

FISHING: Stenhouse Bay jetty is an easy access spot that’s ideal for a family fishing sesh. Southern calamari squid are a prime target on prawn jigs, and the kids should have no trouble rounding up a haul of garfish and tommy ruff on handlines with a bobby cork rig.

HIKING: The 2km Stenhouse Bay Lookout track is a nice way to get the lay of the land and offers views of the old Inneston township. If you feel like stretching the legs, the Royston Head Track is a four-hour return loop, while the 11km Gym Beach Track is one for the masochists.


LOCATION: Innes National Park is located on the southwestern tip of the Yorke Peninsula. It’s approximately 300km from Adelaide via the Princes Highway and Yorke Highway.

CAMPING: There are seven basic campgrounds within the park to choose from, including Stenhouse Bay, Cable Bay, Pondalowie, Casaurina, Shell Beach, Brown Beach and Gym Beach campgrounds. Toilets are provided although other facilities are very few. Cost is $11 per night plus $10 entry fee to the park.

FUEL is available on the way in from Adelaide at Port Wakefield, Ardrossan, Minlaton and Warooka.

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