Visiting the Fleurieu Peninsula With Pets

Looking for a pet-friendly park for you and your adventuring four-legged friend?

Stepping foot onto the Fleurieu Peninsula is the start of an unforgettable journey — one that’s even better shared with your four-legged companions. A mixture of stunning beaches, scenic walking trails, renowned wine regions, and inviting camping spots, this region of South Australia warmly welcomes you and your pets.

So leash up, pack some doggy treats, and start exploring this one-of-a-kind spot where you and your pet can see and enjoy something new every walk.

Top pet-friendly parks on the Fleurieu Peninsula

Victor Harbor Dog Park

If you’re looking for a perfect day out with your furry friend, try one of the local pet-friendly parks on our doorstep. Victor Harbor Dog Park. Nestled in the junction of George Main Road and Oval Park Road, this local gem is open all day, every day. A great spot for you and your four-legged friend, this is a place where everyone is welcome, with or without a dog.

The fully fenced park offers endless space for your canine companion to run, jump, and play to their heart’s content. For your convenience, there’s also car parking adjacent to the park at the Recreation Centre.

Keeping in mind the comfort and safety of your pooch, the park is divided into separate large and small dog exercise areas. You can choose to let your dog loose in either section, depending on their size or how they get on with other dogs.

And when all the running about leaves them panting, you don’t have to worry. The park provides two water stations to keep your dog well-hydrated. So, pack a doggy bag, grab the lead, and get ready for a fun-filled day at Victor Harbor Dog Park, a place where paws meet nature.

Port Elliot Dog Park

Part of the surrounding areas of Victor Harbor, located just off Kurramin Court, the Port Elliot Dog Park is a cherished local spot that’s open to visitors 24/7, with the exception of two days in mid-October during the Port Elliot Show. Established in 2013, this delightful park continues to evolve, thanks to the ongoing support and dedication of local residents, community groups, and park visitors.

Like the Victor Harbor Dog Park, Port Elliot is also a wonderful place for like-minded people to gather, socialise, and have a bit of fun while their dogs enjoy a healthy dose of exercise. It features a fully enclosed park (with an onsite car park), walking paths, and two separate dog exercise areas.

You won’t have trouble finding somewhere to sit and watch your dog run as there’s a range of seating options around the park, with each piece kindly sponsored by members of the community.

Barkers Reserve

Bring your furry friend along for a day of fun at Barker Reserve, situated opposite the Civic Centre and adjacent to Bay Road and the Inman River Bridge. More than a coincidental name, with its expansive green spaces, this pet-friendly park is a canine’s dream, providing plenty of room for chasing frisbees and getting to know other dogs.

With plenty of facilities on-site, you can stay for hours. While your four-legged mate enjoys romping around, you can make use of the free electric BBQ facilities for a picnic. And if your pet enjoys a good stroll, keep them close on-lead and explore the pet-friendly walking and hiking trails together. 

Kent Reserve

Nestled between the Inman River and Kent Drive is Kent Reserve.  This charming spot welcomes dog owners and their loyal companions to enjoy the peacefulness of the foreshore. Also a great picnic area, it’s a great place to spend a few hours of outdoor fun with your pet.

Let your dog enjoy the open space, sniffing out interesting spots and soaking in the fresh seaside air. Meanwhile, you can prepare a tasty BBQ lunch, with facilities readily available on-site.

It’s a great place for families to balance recreation and relaxation – and if you’re feeling like a second outing, you’ll only be a stone’s throw from Encounter Bay.

Onkaparinga River Recreation Park

If you and your companion are avid lovers of nature, the Onkaparinga River Recreation Park is your perfect destination. Nestled where the river spills onto the plains, it’s a fascinating wetland wonderland where your dog will relish exploring on a lead.

This park is not just a beautiful setting for an adventure; it’s a vital conservation area too. It safeguards an important breeding habitat for fish and is home to hundreds of native plant and animal species, some of which are rare. As you explore, you might spot some of the park’s endangered migratory birds– another key reason leads are required.

Whether you want to enjoy a leisurely walk with your dog along the wetland boardwalks, cycle on shared-use trails, or perhaps even kayak the calm waters, Onkaparinga River Recreation Park offers it all. What better way to bond with your four-legged friend than in this peaceful slice of nature?

Bring your notebook or yellow sticky reminders for your next visit, because just next door, is the Onkaparinga River National Park. While dogs aren’t permitted in this part of the reserve, it’s a must-visit for nature lovers. With cliff-top views, deep gorges, and rock-climbing opportunities, this park is an adventurer’s dream. You might catch sight of the western grey kangaroo, the common brushtail possum, or even hear the raucous cries of the yellow-tailed black cockatoo.

Soldiers Memorial Reserve

Situated centrally along the Esplanade, the Soldiers Memorial Reserve is a serene retreat where both you and your canine friend can unwind and revel in the beauty of Victor Harbor. With its stunning location on the foreshore, this reserve offers the best of coastal life while being one of our pet-friendly parks too.

The reserve is well-equipped to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable visit for you and your dog. Drinking fountains are conveniently placed throughout the area, making it easy for both you and your four-legged friend to stay hydrated during your escapades.

For barbecue enthusiasts, the reserve offers well-maintained BBQ facilities where you can whip up a delicious meal as your furry companion enjoys a break in the shade.

Little ones aren’t forgotten either; with a playground on site featuring both shaded and sunlit equipment, there’s something for every energetic youngster. And when it’s time for a break from the fun and games, the picnic area is a perfect spot to spread out a blanket and enjoy some quality time together.

Inman Valley

Maybe not the spot you considered when you thought of pet-friendly parks, but the walking trails of the Inman Valley are generally pet-friendly, provided dogs are kept on a leash. This beautiful trail is home to an array of natural landmarks and diverse bird life, making it an enjoyable outing for both you and your pet. 

Just a short drive from Victor Harbor, this spot offers a mix of easy, on-leash trails for casual strolls with your pet, and challenging hikes for the more adventurous of our four-legged friends. 

With an 8-kilometre return trip, it’s a relatively easy trek that showcases a rich array of natural landmarks and an abundance of bird life. The Spring Mount Southern Walk is another laid-back trail perfect for a leisurely outing with your dog, taking approximately 45 minutes to complete.

Keeping Victor Harbor's Reserves and Beaches Dog-Friendly

Victor Harbor and the Fleurieu Peninsula are proud to offer plenty of dog-friendly areas and pet-friendly parks residents and visitors alike to enjoy. However, to ensure these spaces remain safe and enjoyable for everyone, there are a few rules enforced by local councils.

Leashed Dog Areas

In specific reserves and pet-friendly parks, dogs must always be held on a 2-metre leash. These include:

  • Warland Reserve
  • Soldiers Memorial Gardens
  • Soldiers Memorial Reserve
  • John Simmons Park
  • CM Thorpe Park
  • John W Crompton Jnr Reserve

Also, dogs must be held on a 2-metre leash on all streets, roads, and other public places. And for the safety and preservation of wildlife, dogs are not permitted in any public lake.

Dogs on Beaches

Victor Harbor is home to some of the best beaches on the Fleurieu Peninsula, and many are popular spots for dog walks. However, during daylight saving time, dogs must be on a leash between the hours of 10am and 8pm. During non-daylight saving periods, leash hours are from 10am to 6pm.

Welcoming you and your pets to the Fleurieu Peninsula

This beautiful little stretch of coast is a place where both people and pets can unwind and connect with the beauty of nature. Our parks and serene trails welcome you and your four-legged friends to create unforgettable memories. Remember, the area’s unique charm is best experienced when everyone respects the local guidelines, keeping it a vibrant and safe place for all.

If you’re ever uncertain about bringing your pet to a particular park or trail, reach out to the local council for tips and information that will help make your adventure absolutely… pawfect.

Every season unveils something new on the Fleurieu Peninsula, making it a destination for all times and seasons of the year. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, adventure seeker, or lover of fine wines and arts, the Fleurieu Peninsula offers experiences that cater to every interest– no matter when you visit.

With an abundance of activities, vibrant festivals and events, and a range of must-do experiences, Victor Harbor is a place that always has something exciting to offer. From watching migrating whales to soaking up the local art scene and enjoying relaxing beach days, immersive cultural experiences, and seasonal events, this South Australian coastline has something for everyone… at any time.

Summer (December to February)

The heat of summer touches everything across Victor Harbor and the coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula. It’s a season of soaking up the sun, swimming in the crystal clear turquoise waters, and enjoying the thrill of summer adventure.

Surfing At Dump Beach

Water adventures

Whether you’re a surfing enthusiast or a novice at paddleboarding, summer is filled with adventures in Victor Harbor

Jet skiing and kayaking further add to the list of exciting adventures you can embark on, and even abseiling off the Bluff. Our coastlines, teeming with some of the best beaches in South Australia, become your playground, offering perfect swimming conditions and a serene environment to relax.

Waitpinga Beach

Bask on the Beach

If adrenaline-pumping adventure isn’t quite your thing, you’ll still get to enjoy the golden sands. With the charm of summer, you’ll feel yourself pulled to throw down a towel, open a book, and spend a leisurely day at one of Victor Harbor’s popular beaches

The charm of summer here is that it invites you to simply throw down your towel, open your book, and spend the day leisurely. As the sun warms the pristine sands, time tends to lose its essence. Here, the simple pleasure of feeling the sun’s warmth on your skin, listening to the rhythmic crashing of the waves, and diving into a captivating book defines a perfect summer day.

Waitpinga Farm Quad Biking Tours Victor Harbor South Australia

Discover Adventures and Tours

There’s no shortage of tours and attractions to embark on in Victor Harbor when the sun shines bright. 

Boat cruises are popular for the hotter end of the year, whisking visitors off on voyages through the waters of the Fleurieu Peninsula. Whether it’s spotting playful dolphins, lounging seals, sea lions, or the enormous cliffs across the coastline, these adventures are filled with stories to tell. 

And if you’d rather stay on land, there’s plenty to see and do too like quad biking at Waitpinga Farm or camping at one of Victor Harbor’s campgrounds.

Autumn (March to May)

As the summer heat makes way for the gentle coolness of autumn, the Fleurieu Peninsula transforms into a picturesque canvas painted with warm hues. Perfect for sunsets, picnics, and romantic getaways.

Autumn around the coast of South Australia is an unforgettable experience, presenting the region’s natural beauty in a unique, warm glow. Whether you’re a nature lover, an avid walker, or a wine enthusiast, autumn is a great time to visit.

Nature Walks in Victor Harbor

Stroll Through Parks and Reserves

Autumn’s weather invites you to stroll through the numerous parks and reserves dotted across Victor Harbor. While there aren’t too many native deciduous trees in South Australia, our plant life still enjoys exciting changes like the thick colourful flowers of bottlebrush trees.

Nurturing Mother And Child Walking Through The Vineyard. Mclaren Vale Vineyards Grapevines And Wineries In South Australia Fleurieu Peninsula.

Delve into wineries and local produce

Autumn is the most popular time to explore the wine regions of the Fleurieu Peninsula. Though… there’s rarely a ever bad time to enjoy the wineries and local produce of the area.

As the days grow milder, vineyards in the nearby regions, such as McLaren Vale and Langhorne Creek, come alive with the hustle and bustle of the harvest season. Tour the vineyards, learn about the winemaking process, and taste the nuanced flavours of their offerings.

Heysen Trail Waitpinga

Explore Hiking Trails and Walking Paths

For those who crave a longer exploration, the Fleurieu Peninsula of some of the best hiking trails and walking trails in South Australia. Wander along the coastal trails, where the sea and sky meet in a symphony of colours. If you’re keen, you can set foot on multi-day hikes like The Wild Coast Way (Heysen Trail) that will take you through the heart of the Fleurieu Peninsula’s landscapes, where each bend in the trail reveals something new.

Winter (June to August)

Don’t let the winter chill stop you from planning a trip to the Fleurieu Peninsula as it’s one of the best times to visit. The area, with its wealth of experiences, continues to shine, offering you a winter wonderland brimming with natural beauty, adventure, and warmth.

Winter here is more than just a chilly season; it’s a celebration of nature, adventure, and cozy comforts, proving that the region’s charm is truly year-round.

Whale jumping from South Australia Victor Harbor

Whale watching

Winter months mark the peak of the whale season, making it an ideal time for whale watching. Park yourself at one of the best spots on the Fleurieu Peninsula to go whale watching and see these unbelievable creatures leap from the ocean and carve through the waves.

Top Camping Spots

Embrace Outdoor Adventures and Cozy Nights

Winter is also a perfect time to embrace outdoor activities. Hop on a bike and enjoy a ride along our scenic paths like Encounter Bikeway, or tackle a walk along the coast. With a cooler climate, you’ll find these physical activities a little more comfortable and maybe even more enjoyable.

If you’re after a more relaxing day, pack a picnic lunch and head out for a short 15-minute walk to Hindmarsh Falls. The sight of water cascading onto the rocks below is a mesmerising winter spectacle you don’t want to miss.

And when the night falls and the temperature drops, our cozy bed-and-breakfasts become a welcoming retreat. Or if you prefer a night under the stars, you can cozy up in front of a roaring fire at one of our top campsites on the Fleurieu Peninsula. With a glass of locally-made wine or whiskey in hand and a plate of mouth-watering charcuterie made from fresh local produce by your side… this is what winter evenings are made of.

Coral Street Art Space First Nations Retail

Explore the Thriving Art Scene

If the winter breeze picks up a little too much for you or the family, winter is a great time to step a street or two back from the coastline and soak in the local art scene. The art scene here is vibrant and diverse with Victor Harbor’s rich First Nations and European history, offering an array of experiences:

Coral Street Art Space: This hub welcomes local and interstate artists to showcase their work. With monthly exhibits, it celebrates the thriving local culture and the talent of Indigenous artists.

Victor Harbor Artisan Markets: Discover a treasure trove of locally-made items. From arts and crafts to homemade gifts, this market reflects the free-natured spirit of our coastal community.

Victor Harbor Regional Art Gallery: Housed in the Old Bakery building, the gallery displays a diverse range of work from local artists. Discover a world of paintings, glass sculptures, fabric creations, and carved wooden pieces.

Spring (September to November)

When spring graces The Fleurieu Peninsula, it breathes new life into the land. With the sun shining bright, a gentle coastal breeze and the ocean shimmering in the daylight, it’s one of the best times of year to see local nature and wildlife in Victor Harbor.

Children enjoying Victor Harbor walking trail


The comfortable spring climate makes it an ideal time to indulge in bushwalking. On cooler days, you can explore the shady bush trails, enjoying the warmth of the sun filtering through the canopy. Each trail unfolds a new perspective, with rustling leaves and bird calls adding to your journey.

Spring also invites you to hike through the lush green hills that adorn the Victor Harbor landscape. With every step, you’ll witness the beauty of the season—wildflowers popping up through the grass, their vibrant colours decorating the verdant terrain.

Artisan Market

Enjoy local markets and fresh produce

Victor Harbor is a vibrant coastal town, offering plenty of shopping opportunities for families, boutique browsers or treasure hunters at local shops and markets

The town’s busy streets offer plenty of variety, with small boutiques, bustling markets, and independent local producers selling farm-fresh food like cheeses, wine and craft items. Perfect to fill a wicker picnic basket and head to one of our many parks and reserves to enjoy amongst nature.

food on the fleurieu peninsula

Explore the bustling restaurant scene

After a day of adventure, there’s nothing better than sitting down at one of Victor Harbor’s many restaurants. The food scene is growing every year and spring is a great time to enjoy local produce cooked by the experts. 

From casual eateries to waterside restaurants and fine dining experiments, you’ll be able to find a table perfect for the family or a romantic dinner. And if you’re more interested in eating casually or taking your food with you, Victor Harbor is home to plenty of cafes and takeaways too.

Not sure when to visit?

The Fleurieu Peninsula is a destination sparkling with a unique charm in every season. Whether you’re here to soak up the summer sun and surf our beautiful beaches, explore wine regions during autumn, see whales migrating in winter, or enjoy lush hikes in spring, there’s something for everyone all year round.

Our vibrant community, stunning landscapes, and rich history and culture make Victor Harbor and the whole Peninsula a perfect holiday spot no matter when you choose to visit. Every season unveils new experiences and adventures and we’re here to help you uncover them.

Take a look at some local itineraries– jam-packed with fun for all ages. Or learn more about what the area has to offer by reaching out and contacting us. Our team is always ready to assist, ensuring your time here is memorable, fulfilling, and filled with the best that South Australia has to offer.

At Victor Harbor, we’re not just about seasons; we’re about moments. Find out what’s on and come and make yours.

Only an hour south of Adelaide on the Fleurieu Peninsula, Victor Harbor has cemented itself as a go-to fishing destination for many anglers in SA after a quick escape and productive options.  

One of the real plus points of the area is the family-friendly and low-fuss land-based fishing on the doorstep of Victor Harbor, which doesn’t require you to own a boat, or a huge financial outlay to enjoy. You can easily sneak a line in between shopping and sightseeing while in the area, or make a day of it, and still reasonably expect to catch your tea and have a fun time – it’s extremely convenient! 

From jetties, sheltered shorelines, and rivers, to high-energy beaches, you’re well catered for at Victor Harbor if you don’t have a boat. Let’s take a whirlwind look at where to start. 


A fishy focal point for visitors to Victor Harbor is the jetty structures of the area, which provide safe and easy access platforms for anglers of all experience levels. 

The Screwpile Jetty on Granite Island is probably the most productive Victor Harbor jetty and has produced some remarkable captures of mulloway, big sharks, kingfish, and snapper in the past. It’s probably most noted however for its consistent catches of squid when the water is clear, to go with trevally, mackerel, tommies, and salmon of mixed sizes. At night various shark species are also likely for mad-keen anglers, and it is a spot that can truly provide the odd surprise capture. The nearby rock ledges can also give up similar species, albeit they’re trickier to fish. 

The lengthy and newly updated causeway that you walk across to Granite Island to reach the Screwpile Jetty is also fishable for squid, snook, tommies, garfish, and other species. A good tip is to try using floats for squid and others here as the weedy bottom can be unforgiving if you fish too deep. The causeway is long enough to ensure you travel light when fishing on Granite Island, and it’s not uncommon to see local anglers using trollies to transport their gear to the island – take only the essentials if you can. 

The other option is the Bluff Jetty, which is reached by driving up the short unsealed road just past the local boat ramp, and Whalers Seaside Dining restaurant. The Bluff Jetty fishes much the same as Screwpile, although is considerably smaller in size. It’s a case of first in best dressed for the best position on this small but productive structure, that’s ideally tucked inside the point to offer great wind protection. Big squid and tommies are a specialty here, but again a spread of species is possible. 

The Bluff Jetty at Victor Harbor
The Bluff Jetty, Encounter Bay


Sheltered, family-friendly beach fishing can be found in the more sedate waters of the Victor Harbor foreshore. The foreshore beach extends from the boat ramp, right through to Chiton Rocks, offering both sheltered water to the medium intensity conditions closer to Chiton.  

The Victor Harbor foreshore provides shallow water fishing for garfish, salmon, mullet, the odd whiting, and flathead, plus a mixture of other species. Try using a little berley to bring the fish to your area and you should rustle up a feed here. 

As you head out of town towards Chiton Rocks, the extra wave action and water depth will encourage bigger fish closer to the beach. Gummy and elephant sharks, rays, mulloway, salmon, and many other fish are caught along here. It can be worth fishing at night if chasing bigger targets in the area, but daytime is productive for many of the smaller species. 


Kings Beach regularly appears in fishing reports from the area, and is located to the right of The Bluff and Petrel Cove just outside of Victor Harbor, and is accessed via a short dirt road that ends at an obvious car park, with a lookout that you can use to spot whales over the cooler months or simply absorb the stunningly rugged coastal vista before you. From here the walk to Kings Beach is around 10-minutes or so along the Heysen trail. 

While the beach can be productive, it’s usually the lagoon that’s the centre of angler attention given it provides calm water and consistent fish. The lagoon is actually a fish trap constructed by the Ramindjeri Aboriginals and is a classic example of an intertidal fish trap. By building up the outer edge with rocks, on a low to medium tide fish are largely bound inside the confines of the lagoon. It works too, with schools of mullet sometimes stuck inside making for easy pickings, with garfish, salmon trout, tommies, and various rock species typical catches as well. 

Mullet Off Kings Beach
Mullet at Kings Beach
Fishing Off Kings Beach
Kings Beach

Waitpinga and Parsons Beaches

Surf fishing is a crowd puller to the Victor Harbor area, with the most high profile beaches being Waitpinga and the nearby Parsons. Conveniently they’re only 15 minutes away or so from Victor Harbor, and both have reputations for great salmon fishing. 

Boardwalk access is possible to Waitpinga at several points, including both ends of the beach. Parsons and Waitpinga have a mutual carpark, where you can look over the respective beaches, and sometimes even spot salmon schools. Thankfully there are access points here if you do happen to spy some! 

Both beaches, but especially Waitpinga, are known for their dependable gutter formations, and in season (roughly April to September) you’ll catch salmon of all sizes more trips than not, with yellow-eye mullet also a regular (and tasty) catch. Sharks after dark, and the odd mulloway are possible also. Even if you’re not fishing these beaches are spectacular locations to visit and admire. 

Waitpinga Salmon
Waitpinga Salmon
Waitpinga Beach Fishing
Waitpinga Beach


A great contingency for the beaches and offshore fishing in the area, when it’s windy, is chasing black bream in Victor Harbor’s rivers and lakes.  

The Hindmarsh and Inman rivers, both of which are quite narrow, are easily found in town and have populations of bream of all sizes and yellow-eye mullet. The fish here can become quite wily given the tight water, and minimalistic rigging and stealthy bait and lure tactics are best.  

Encounter Lakes is a manmade lake system basically in the middle of Victor Harbor located at Encounter Bay as you head towards The Bluff, just past the local hospital. The lakes are lined with residential properties, reserves, and the odd public park and beach. For anglers, there are multiple access points to the water around the lake, with the two public parks having beaches that are used regularly by those launching kayaks.  

Black breams are a popular catch in the lakes and are caught around any artificial structure in the system and from the sandy flats, and it’s a sneaky little option to consider. All fish in the lake must be returned, however, and not kept. 

All in all, Victor Harbor is perfectly positioned to offer you a diverse shore fishing experience within easy striking distance of the city. When visiting call into Tonkins Sports and the BCF store for all your bait and tackle, with other select service station outlets also providing supplies – happy shore fishing! 

Encounter Lakes Bream
Encounter Lakes Bream
Encounter Lakes
Encounter Lakes, Victor Harbor

There are plenty of great places to go camping in Victor Harbor and across the Fleurieu Peninsula. But, before you roll up your swag and pack your car, get recommendations on top spots to visit, tips to get there, and places to explore.

Top Spots for Camping Along the Fleurieu Peninsula

Victor Harbor Holiday Park Waterpark And Waterslides

Victor Harbor Holiday & Cabin Park

When it comes to family-friendly camping, Victor Harbor Holiday & Cabin Park is a top contender. Nestled in a spacious and leafy setting, this camping ground offers plenty of room for you and your family to spread out and enjoy the great outdoors.

If you’re travelling with kids, the park has a range of facilities to keep them entertained. From waterslides to a swimming pool, and a large children’s playground, there’s never a dull moment. Meanwhile, parents can relax and unwind on the expansive lawns or at the camp kitchen, equipped with all the essentials to prepare meals.

Victor Harbor Holiday & Cabin Park also offers a range of accommodation options, including cabins, villas, chalets, and units. These are perfect for groups of friends or young people who want to experience the camping lifestyle with a few added luxuries. All accommodation options are fitted with comfortable beds, air-conditioning, and modern amenities, making your stay as comfortable as possible.

With its proximity to the heart of Victor Harbor, guests can easily access local attractions such as Granite Island, the horse-drawn tram, and the town’s many shopscafes, and takeaways. Plus, with the park situated just a short walk from some of the Fleurieu Peninsula’s best beaches, you can enjoy a refreshing swim or a leisurely stroll along the sand.

Irene Valli Waterpark Nrma Victor Harbor

NRMA Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park

If you’re looking for a peaceful and picturesque camping ground in Victor Harbor, then NRMA Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park is an excellent choice. Nestled right by the water, this park offers a stunning location with easy access to the beach.

For those who love fishing and boating, this holiday park is a perfect spot. With a boat ramp located just a stone’s throw away, you can easily launch your boat and head out onto the sparkling blue waters of Encounter Bay. Meanwhile, the park’s calm waters make it perfect for young children to swim and paddle safely.

NRMA Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park offers a range of accommodation options, from powered and unpowered campsites to self-contained cabins. The park’s sites are spacious, level, and shaded, providing a comfortable and relaxing stay. Guests can also enjoy the park’s facilities, including the camp kitchen, barbecue areas, and children’s playground.

And if you’re into glamping in Victor Harbor, this location also offers the newly added safari tents. Each of these offers easy access to the beach and views stretching to Encounter Bay.

With its prime location, NRMA Victor Harbor Beachfront Holiday Park is just a short stroll away from the town centre, where you can enjoy a range of dining options, like restaurants or cafes and takeaways, shopping, and local tours and attractions such as the South Australian Whale Centre, and the Urimbirra Wildlife Park.

Adare 8

Adare Camp & Caravan Park

This camping spot is typically focused on school groups, but Adare Camp & Caravan Park is a must-visit destination. Located in the nearby suburb of McCracken, Adare is steeped in history and offers a range of accommodation options for large groups, weddings, and families.

Adare’s most iconic feature is the historic Adare Castle, which provides a stunning backdrop for weddings and other special events. The park’s facilities are perfect for large groups, with plenty of space to set up camp and enjoy the great outdoors.

Adare is also a dog-friendly site, so your furry friends can join you on your camping adventure. With a range of facilities, including a camp kitchen, BBQ areas, and a children’s playground, you’ll have everything you need for a comfortable and enjoyable stay. Plus, with the park located within easy distance of many walking and bike trails, you can explore the beautiful scenery of the Fleurieu Peninsula at your leisure.

Waitpinga Beach Fishing

Newland Head Conservation Park

If you’re a nature lover, surfer, or swimmer, then Newland Head Conservation Park is a must-visit destination in Victor Harbor. Located between the stunning beaches of Waitpinga and one of the other best beaches along the Fleurieu Peninsula, Parsons Beach, this park offers a unique and secluded camping experience.

Newland Head Conservation Park is perfect for those who love the ocean. With its close proximity to the beach, visitors can enjoy a range of activities such as fishing, swimming, and surfing. However, it’s important to note that Waitpinga Beach is not manned by lifeguards, and can produce a strong swell, so it’s only recommended for strong swimmers and surfers.

For those who prefer to stay on dry land, the park offers plenty of opportunities to explore the natural beauty of the Fleurieu Peninsula. Visitors can explore some of the best walking trails and hikes the Fleurieu Peninsula has to offer along the stunning coastal cliffs, spot local wildlife, or simply relax and soak up the serene surroundings.

Newland Head Conservation Park offers a range of camping options, from basic bush camping to more developed campsites with amenities. With its secluded location and stunning views, it’s the perfect spot for those who want to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life and immerse themselves in nature.

Choosing the Best Camping Spots Along the Fleurieu Peninsula

Camping along the Fleurieu Peninsula is an adventure that’s not to be missed. 

So, pack up your tent, load up the caravan, or roll up your swag, and get ready to embark on an unforgettable camping adventure in one of Australia’s best places to camp. With its stunning coastal cliffs, sparkling blue waters, and abundant wildlife, there’s no shortage of natural beauty to explore.

For advice on choosing the best camping spot along the Fleurieu Peninsula for you or your family, pop by the Victor Harbor Information Centre for personal advice and recommendations. Or, feel free to contact us online for local tips and suggestions for travelling.

The Fleurieu Peninsula is a seaside playground. Hosting some of South Australia’s best beaches, it’s a must-visit for swimmers, surfers, sunbathers, and whale watchers.

Pack your beach bag and head to one of the best beaches along the Fleurieu Peninsula.

Top 10 Beaches along the Fleurieu Peninsula

Port Elliot's Horseshoe Bay

Port Elliot's Horseshoe Bay

Horseshoe Bay is a breathtaking cove promising serenity and family fun. This sheltered beach with its crystalline waters and golden sands is perfect for swimming, snorkelling, and rock pool exploring. With abundant marine life and a unique shoreline, this is a true gem waiting to be explored.

Nearby, visitors will have the opportunity to explore clifftop walking trails with panoramic views of the enchanting bay and nearby islands. During cooler months of the year, the clifftops are one of the best spots to whale watch in South Australia.

Middleton Beach

Middleton Beach

For those with a passion for surfing, Middleton Beach is the place to be. This long stretch of South Australian coastline offers perfect conditions for all skill levels. The pristine white sand invites sunbathers, while rock formations at either end of the beach provide a scenic backdrop for avid photographers. 

Visitors can join a local surf school, like Learn to Surf South Australia, or simply soak in the laid-back atmosphere of this charming seaside village.

Encounter Bay

Encounter Bay

Encounter Bay is central to a wide range of adventures across the Fleurieu Peninsula. This vast expanse of turquoise water is a haven for water sports enthusiasts, hosting exciting activities like abseiling, kayaking, sailing, windsurfing, and scuba diving.

The rugged coastline is interspersed with small sandy coves, perfect for a secluded picnic or a romantic getaway. If you’re visiting, be sure to check out the historic whaling station and Bluff lookout, both offering sweeping views of the bay.

Nearby, visitors can forget about walking and try their hand at riding the Encounter Bikeway, an on-road and shared trail that links  Victor Harbor and the riverport town of Goolwa, via the coastal towns of Port Elliot and Middleton.

Goolwa Beach

Goolwa Beach

At Goolwa Beach, miles of unspoiled shoreline and rolling sand dunes create an otherworldly landscape. 

Somehow balancing itself as a perfect spot for a leisurely walk or a 4WD adventure, Goolwa Beach offers activities for thrill-seekers and nature lovers alike. Visitors can try their hand at sandboarding on the colossal dunes, or be captivated by the abundant birdlife and seasonal whale watching opportunities.

Normanville Beach

Normanville Beach

Normanville Beach is a slice of paradise ideal for families and relaxation seekers. Its calm, shallow waters make it perfect for young swimmers, while the extensive stretches of soft sand invite long beachcombing sessions. 

Nearby, visitors can try the local cafes and eateries, or indulge in a horseback ride along the shoreline for a truly memorable experience.

Blowhole Beach:

Blowhole Beach

Nestled within the Deep Creek Conservation Park, Blowhole Beach is an idyllic haven for those seeking seclusion and natural beauty. 

Accessed via a scenic drive and a short hike, this hidden gem rewards visitors with its turquoise waters, rocky outcrops, and thriving marine life. Perfect for snorkelling, fishing, and wildlife spotting, this beach is an unspoiled sanctuary worth the journey.

Waitpinga Beach

Waitpinga Beach

Waitpinga Beach is a rugged, windswept paradise for surfers and anglers alike. 

Known for its wild waves and abundant fish species, this untamed stretch of coastline is ideal for those seeking an adrenaline rush. 

The towering cliffs and dramatic coastal scenery make for an awe-inspiring backdrop, while the neighbouring Waitpinga Conservation Park offers ample opportunity for bushwalking and birdwatching.

Nearby, visitors can explore Parsons Beach, another secluded favourite. Parsons Beach is known by locals as a fishing and surfing favourite and another must-visit.

Sellicks Beach

Sellicks Beach

The drive down to the shoreline of Sellicks Beach offers a unique, exhilarating experience as you descend the steep hill, revealing panoramic views of the expansive coastline. 

Sellics Beach is known for its firm sand, making it possible for cars to easily navigate. During warmer months, the beach is a popular spot for visitors parking cars along the sand, and enjoying picnics.

The beach’s southern end has an off-leash dog area, making it a popular spot for a family outing with furry friends.

Port Noarlunga South

Port Noarlunga South

Port Noarlunga South is a vibrant beach, with popular aquatic activities and a remarkable reef. 

The protected waters of Port Noarlunga Aquatic Reserve make it a popular spot for snorkelling and scuba diving. There are plenty of colourful fish and coral formations hidden beneath the surface to be explored.

Visitors can enjoy a leisurely walk along the esplanade, take a dip in the calm waters, or relax on the golden sand.

Second Valley

Second Valley

Second Valley is a secluded cove nestled between rugged cliffs and dense foliage. It’s a perfect spot to escape the hustle and bustle and just… relax. 

But if you’ve got a sense of adventure, Second Valley can offer that too. Visitors can wander along the historic jetty, discover rockpools, or embark on a coastal walk up the cliffside to discover stunning views from the clifftops.

Visiting Victor Harbor

Whether you’re a thrill-seeker looking for a wild adventure, or a nature lover looking for a laidback experience, the Fleurieu Peninsula boasts some of South Australia’s best beaches, each with its own unique characteristics and attractions.

For more information on each of these beaches, or recommendations along the Fleurieu Peninsula, please feel free to contact us to learn more. 

If you’re interested in travelling and exploring the Fleurieu Peninsula, Victor Harbor is a great central point, offering options for local events, places to eat and drink, and more. Explore accommodation in Victor Harbor now, or contact us for more advice.

Whale watching has become one of the most popular activities for visitors to South Australia, and for good reason. With diverse marine life, stunning landscapes, and incredible encounters with nature and wildlife, it’s no wonder that people from all over the world travel across the world to this little pocket of Australia to witness these majestic creatures in their natural habitat.

For the best chances of spotting whales during your visit, it’s recommended to book a whale-watching tour with an experienced guide who knows the best spots for whale sightings or talk to the friendly team at the South Australian Whale Centre

If you’d like to learn more about whale watching in South Australia with some local tips, feel free to reach out and contact us.

What whales will you get to see from South Australia?

The most common sightings of whale watching in South Australia are Humpback Whales and Southern Right Whales. Further offshore with guides, visitors might be lucky enough to spot toothed whales such as sperm whales, pilot whales, and even orcas. 

The largest animal in the world, the blue whale, can also be spotted feeding offshore from Kangaroo Island and the Bonney Coast.

Best times for whale watching in South Australia

The best times for whale watching in South Australia vary depending on the species and annual migration you hope to see, but in general, the whale-watching season runs from May to October.

The annual migration of whales to South Australia occurs during the cooler months of the year, when they mate, give birth, and nurse their young. For the best chances of sighting whales, visit South Australia between June and September.

May to October is the most popular time to go whale watching in South Australia. During these colder months, the southern right whales and humpback whales are the most commonly spotted species.

Just a slightly smaller window, during May to October, you can still see southern right whales and humpbacks, but a higher chance of seeing blue whales.

Best spots in South Australia to go whale-watching

South Australia is home to some of the best whale-watching locations in the world, and each offers opportunities beyond seeing the world’s biggest mammals. These spots offer unique experiences, from the rugged coastline of the Eyre Peninsula to the family-friendly activities at Victor Harbor

Regardless of where you choose to go, be sure to keep an eye out for these incredible creatures and remember to respect their space by keeping a safe distance.

Victor Harbor and the Fleurieu Peninsula

Located just an hour’s drive from Adelaide, Victor Harbor is one of the most popular whale-watching locations in South Australia. Being a breeding ground for Southern Right Whales, and a stop-in for passing Humpback Whales, there’s good reason.

You can see them passing from the coastline at scenic locations such as:

  • The cliffs at The Bluff
  • Nakurami Kondoli, the whale lookout at Encounter Bay
  • Basham Beach at Middleton
  • Frenchman’s Lookout at Port Elliot

Simply pack a picnic rug filled with food and local produce from Victor Harbor, find a spot, and maybe even a pair of binoculars. And if you don’t fancy your luck from the shoreline, you can contact us for some recommendations on local whale watching tours. If you’re lucky, you might even get to spot seals, sea lions, and dolphins as well.

Kangaroo Island

Kangaroo Island is a must-visit destination for wildlife enthusiasts, and whale watching is one of the most popular activities on the island. The area is home to a diverse range of whale species, including Southern Right Whales, Humpback Whales, and Blue Whales. Whale watching tours depart from Kingscote and Penneshaw.

Eyre Peninsula

The Eyre Peninsula is a remote and rugged location that is well-known for its whale watching opportunities. The area is home to a wide range of whale species, including Southern Right Whales, Humpback Whales, and Blue Whales. Visitors can take a whale watching tour from Port Lincoln or Coffin Bay.

How to tell the difference between whales in South Australia


When it comes to coloration, Southern Right Whales are typically dark grey or black, with white patches called callosities on their heads, which serve as a unique pattern for each individual.

Humpback Whales, conversely, display a more varied color palette, ranging from dark grey to black on their dorsal side, with white or mottled white on their ventral side. Their flippers also exhibit unique patterns, aiding in individual identification.

Tail displays

Tail displays and fluke patterns are other telltale signs of a whale’s species is its tail displays and fluke patterns. Southern Right Whales have a broad and smooth tail fluke with a relatively straight trailing edge. They are less likely to lift their flukes out of the water when diving, making it slightly more challenging to observe their tail patterns.

Humpback Whales, in contrast, boast large, distinctive flukes with a serrated trailing edge. As they dive, they often lift their flukes high above the water, providing a familiar sight. Keen observers can use this opportunity to identify the individual based on the unique patterns found on the underside of their flukes.

Dorsal fin and head shape

Another aspect to consider when differentiating between Southern Right Whales and Humpback Whales is the appearance of their dorsal fins and head shape. Southern Right Whales have a distinct lack of a dorsal fin, which sets them apart from other whale species. Their heads are also more rounded and wider, giving them a somewhat bulbous appearance.

Humpback Whales, in comparison, have a small, triangular dorsal fin that sits on a hump, a feature that has inspired their name. Their heads are narrower than those of Southern Right Whales, and they have elongated pectoral fins that can reach up to a third of their body length, contributing to their more streamlined appearance.


Whales also have distinct behaviours that can help you identify them. For example, Southern Right Whales are known to be more social and often swim in close groups, while Humpback Whales are more solitary and tend to travel alone or in small groups.

Tips for whale watching in South Australia

The Big Duck Boat Tour whale watching

When choosing a whale watching tour operator, make sure they are licensed, experienced, and follow responsible whale watching guidelines. Supporting operators that prioritise the welfare of the whales, such as those who maintain a safe distance and limit the number of boats around the whales can help us enjoy sharing the world with these creatures for years to come.

If you’re watching whales from a boat, always follow the captain’s instructions and stay seated while the boat is moving. Don’t make any sudden movements or loud noises that could startle the whales.

Big Duck Boat Tours in Victor Harbor might be one of your best choices for whale watching in the area, with opportunities to head offshore from Granite Island to see seals, dolphins, seabirds, and whales. You can visit their website to learn more or contact us.

When watching whales from the shore, always be aware of your surroundings and keep a safe distance from the water. Never approach whales or other marine wildlife, and always follow any signage or instructions from local authorities.

If you’re having trouble spotting whales, try fixing your eyes on the horizon, using your peripheral vision to notice breaches as they happen.

For more help exploring Victor Harbor and the South Australian coastline

Aside from whale watching, there are plenty of other activities to enjoy in South Australia. While you’re on the coastline, you can enjoy nature and wildlife by exploring some nearby walking trails, or go wine tasting in the picturesque wine regions of South Australia, filling your picnic basket with local produce to take with you.

No matter what your interests are, you’re sure to find something to enjoy in this beautiful little part of the world.

Contact our friendly team for more information and recommendations for Victor Harbor whale watching.

Walking trails and Fleurieu Peninsula hikes

Are you looking for a memorable outdoor adventure? Look no further than the stunning walking trails and hikes that fill the Fleurieu Peninsula. 

Embark on an unforgettable journey through some of South Australia’s most pristine beaches, exceptional coastal views and unspoilt wildlife. With warm temperatures, beautiful sunsets and lush green landscapes, it’s the perfect place to explore nature and get away from it all. 

Whether you’re looking for a leisurely stroll along the causeway to Granite Island or an exhilarating hike up a mountain, you can find it at the Fleurieu Peninsula. And what could be better than ending your trek by circling back to our beautiful beaches and enjoying a picnic filled with choices collected from wineries and local produce

Recommended walking trails and hikes along the Fleurieu Peninsula

Hindmarsh River Trail

Hind Marsh Fall walking trail

The Hindmarsh River Trail is a stunning escapade into Australia’s most pristine nature. Explore the endless flood plains, paperbark woodlands and sand dunes while delighting in a wealth of bird and frog sightings. Suitable for all fitness levels, this easy stroll will absorb you into the serenity of natural Australian beauty.

Start your journey by meandering around the lagoon and its fascinating mixture of both salty seawater and more brackish fresh river water, teeming with native aquatic life. Don’t forget to take note and follow the guidelines of all the trail markers that are in place, as they help protect our environment and ecosystem for future generations.

Heysen Trail

With 1,200 kilometres of diverse beauty, this trail is the perfect escape for hiking and backpacking enthusiasts seeking an adventure through deep gorges and lush vineyards from Cape Jervis to Parachilna Gorge. Whether you’re after a multi-day trek or a more casual day trip, the Heritage Trail, or Heysen Spur Trail is sure to provide every explorer with a journey through both Australian nature and history. 

Start your trek at Cape Jervis on the picturesque Fleurieu Peninsula – here, you’ll find beautiful coastlines and stunning bushland as far as the eye can see. Afterwards, you’ll be journeying through pine forests, rich farmland and quaint towns as you make your way up north. 

With an unequalled combination of breathtaking views and centuries-old stories brought to life, a trek along the Heysen Trail will give even the most experienced hikers something they’ve never experienced before.

Kaiki Trail Granite Island

Granite Island Kaiki Trail

The Kaiki Trail, or the Granite Island Loop, is a beautiful 3.5-kilometre walking trail near Victor Harbor (via the causeway). Open year-round, this loop trail is easily accessible and great for everyone, from beginner-level hikers to more experienced adventurers looking to enjoy a little bit of coastal solace in nature. 

You can bring the whole family; the Granite Island Loop makes for a perfect serene escape that’s easy enough for everyone. It may take up to an average of 45 minutes to complete, but if you’re interested in whale watching, you can stay and enjoy watching their migration between May to October.

This walk can be taken as a quick loop or as an extended excursion for those who need more time to explore and let their mind wander peacefully. There’s no better way to enjoy some much-needed rest amongst family than by air-breathing through the Kaiki Trail. With stunning views of the ocean at the top of the island, it’s sure to have you feeling refreshed after a brief escape from your daily hustle and bustle.

Rosetta Trail

The Rosetta Trail is 800 meters of winding path near Victor Harbor that overlooks some truly breathtaking scenery. Ambitious travellers can also extend the walk by starting either in central Victor Harbor or Kent Reserve, or they can continue beyond Waitpinga Cliffs if they’re up for a bit of a challenge. 

Throughout the trail, expect to see slices of unspoiled nature with diverse wildlife populating its expanse. Pastel-coloured fields watered by sunlight meet towering mountain peaks and rolling hills blanketed in lush vegetation. At night, pink-hued sunsets cast their calming hues over this magical landscape, while the warm glow of campfires invites you beneath the starry sky. For those looking for romantic getaways in South Australia, the Rosetta Trail is hard to beat.

Town Centre Heritage Trail

Heritage Trail Fleurieu Peninsula

Explore Victor Harbor’s heritage like never before with the fascinating Town Centre Heritage Trail. This 3km self-guided journey takes you on an incredible adventure to uncover the stories of 38 historically significant buildings in the town centre—all while taking in glorious views as you make your way around. 

We wouldn’t blame you if you stopped by to check out places to eat and drink in Victor Harbor as well.

Perfect for history buffs, walking enthusiasts, and anyone looking to learn more about the place many South Australians call home, this trail lets you explore Victor Harbor’s awe-inspiring local history and appreciate how these buildings have shaped who we are today.

Since 2010, Victor Harbor has been using blue plaques to demonstrate the importance of its State and Local Heritage Listed Buildings. There are over 50 of these special signs marking significant locations, proudly reflecting upon our rich and diverse built heritage for locals and visitors alike. During your exploration of the Town Centre Heritage Trail, keep an eye out for these playful symbols, popping up throughout your journey!

How to find the best walking trails in South Australia

Are you looking for an enriching and memorable experience? Visit Victor Harbor – South Australia’s premier destination for inspiration and exploration. 

You can spend hours discovering breathtaking landscapes, with nature and wildlife that can’t be found anywhere else in the world. Feel your heart race as you explore caves or follow ancient pathways meandering through lush greenery. 

Our team are experts when it comes to travelling and experiencing South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula, so don’t worry if you need help along the way – we have it covered!  With our straightforward advice and reliable recommendations, rest assured that your holiday turns into one of life’s most precious moments – an adventure bursting with opportunities!

Contact us online to find out more about exciting walking trails in South Australia’s Victor Harbor and the Fleurieu Peninsula, or plan your trip filled with walking trails using our travel inspiration.


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