ADELAIDE TO HAMILTON

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and unwind on this scenic 6-hour journey through regional South Australia and into western Victoria. Pastoral landscapes and historic towns await as you follow in the footsteps of early explorers. From limestone caves and family parks to award-winning wineries and volcanic plains, this drive is full of diverse delights. Stop and experience country hospitality at its best on your way to Hamilton – a bustling regional hub and gateway to further adventures in the spectacular Grampians National Park.

PLAN A BREAK, EVERY TWO HOURS ON YOUR DRIVE

Murray Bridge

Travel time: 1 Hour

Distance from Adelaide: 76 kms

Departing Adelaide on the M1 South Eastern Freeway, you’ll arrive at the riverside town of Murray Bridge – the Gateway to the Riverland region. Visit the iconic Murray Bridge Bunyip (Mulyawonk) if you dare! The kids will love this one. The Bunyip lurks in a watery cave on the banks of the mighty Murray River, at Sturt Reserve. This mythical creature, a South Australian icon and local treasure, rises from the depths of its watery cave in an entertaining spectacle that evokes screams of delight from children watching.
For indoor activities, check out the town’s local museum to learn about the area’s history. As you continue your journey, remember to stay alert, obey speed limits, and take regular breaks to arrive at your destination safely.
Refuel at one of Murray Bridge’s cozy cafes before heading off.

 

Keith

Travel time: 1 Hour 40 Minutes

Distance from Murray Bridge: 154 kms

 

Arriving in Keith, the Don Moseley Park is an iconic must stop for all families. The ridiculously cool monorail train is the main drawcard to the park, and could well be the last of South Australia REAL fun old school play equipment and is fun for young (and old!).

With clean toilets, BBQ facilities and a stone’s throw from the main street, this park is a great pause location on your drive. As you continue your journey through the pastoral countryside, be mindful of the winding roads and keep your eyes on the road ahead as often large farm equipment is moving. 

Naracoorte

Travel time: 1 Hour 10 Minutes

Distance from Keith: 109 kms

Famous for its spectacular underground landscape and Indigenous heritage, Naracoorte is a must-visit destination. Spend an hour exploring the unique Naracoorte Caves, where you can see rare cave-dwelling wildlife and learn about the area’s fascinating geology. Nearby, the Bill Richie Memorial Conservation Park is home to over 250 Indigenous rock art sites – be sure to book ahead to secure your spot.

After your cave adventure, refuel with a hearty pie from the local bakery or treat yourself to a delicious coffee and pastry from the highly-rated Blacksmiths Cafe in the heart of town. With its cozy atmosphere and locally-sourced ingredients, Blacksmiths Cafe is a great spot to recharge before hitting the road again.

 

Penola

Travel time: 32 Minutes

Distance from Naracoorte: 50 kms

This charming region is surrounded by forests and pastoral farms and is situated in one of Australia’s premier cool climate wine regions. The drive from Naracoorte takes you through Coonawarra, famous for its Cabernet Sauvignon which thrives on the Terra Rossa soil running along the Riddoch Highway. Take the opportunity to sample local drops over lunch at one of the vineyards dotted throughout the region.

Penola is the birthplace of Catholicism in Australia. When she was 18, Mary MacKillop arrived in Penola where she started a school for disadvantaged children. Learn about Mary’s inspiring story at the Mary MacKillop Interpretive Centre. Nearby sits Father Woods Tree, where Father Julian Tenison Woods first conducted church services under an old gum tree.

 

Casterton

Travel time: 45 Minutes

Distance from Penola: 63 kms

Continuing through green rolling hills dotted with grazing sheep and cattle farms, you’ll arrive in Casterton (… mins), a historic gold rush era town known for its charming streetscapes and local stores. Casterton is also known as the birthplace of Australia’s iconic kelpie dog breed. Be sure to allow time to visit the Casterton Kelpie Centre to learn about the versatile working dogs and see demonstrations of their herding skills.

Explore boutique shops, art galleries or simply wander through the well-preserved buildings and landmarks as you unpack the rich history. Refuel with a picnic by the shady Jubilee Lake. Option to have lunch at one of the local cafes and bakeries in town before getting back on the road.

 

 

Coleraine

Travel time: 20 Minutes

Distance from Casterton: 30 kms

Approaching Southern Grampians, make a pitstop in Coleraine. The rolling hills and natural grasslands of Coleraine were dubbed ‘Australia Felix’, meaning Fortunate Land, by European explorer, Major Thomas Mitchell. And rightly so. This charming town will take you on a nostalgic journey of delightful discoveries, just don’t forget your camera.

Your final stretch between Coleraine and Hamilton is an easy drive that will have you discovering two boastful waterfalls, Wannon and Nigretta Falls. These seasonal falls can be seen in their full glory from well positioned viewing platforms. Breath-taking? Yes they are.

 

Hamilton

Travel time: 25 Minutes

Distance from Coleraine: 33 kms

Your journey ends in the town of Hamilton, a short drive from Coleraine. As the gateway to the Southern Grampians region, Hamilton offers visitors a warm welcome along with diverse experiences. Browse the boutique shops and galleries in the tree-lined streets, taking in the charming historic buildings. Be sure to pick up a self-guided walking maps from the Information Centre. Stay to explore further the next day, whether capturing the vibrant street art, experiencing the busy sheep sales, or venturing into the spectacular Grampians National Park. Hamilton is the perfect base for rest and relaxation before your next discovery.
Explore more HERE.

 

Fishing at Lake Hamilton

PAUSE & STOP AT OUR VISITOR CENTRE

Speak to our local experts when you call into the Hamilton Visitor Information Centre.  Discover more about our towns and hear from a local.  With clean toilets, convenient parking, EV charging stations and best of all free maps, make sure this is your first stop.  Open 7 days, 9am to 5pm. 
Find us at 86 Hamilton Place, Hamilton.

Dunkeld Studio Accommodation

BOOK LOCAL

It’s easy and convenient to book directly with our local accommodation operators. 
Booking direct is another way to shop local and support small. 

Pierrepoint Wines

READ OUR BLOGS

There’s something about Greater Hamilton awaiting your discovery.
The space, the freshest of air, the people, the delightful surprises.

Pause. Stop. Tips to stay safe and arrive alive, for your next road trip.

We've compiled some easy steps when planning and preparing for your next road trip.

      • Plan your journey ahead of time.
      • Aim to get enough quality sleep before driving – regardless of whether the trip is a long or short.
      • Avoid driving at times when you would usually be sleeping.
      • Don't travel for more than 8 - 10 hours a day.
      • Plan to pause from the road at least every two hours.
      • Consider swapping drivers where possible.
      • Don't drink alcohol before your trip -even a small amount can significantly contribute to driver fatigue.
      • Take a 15 minute powernap if you feel drowsy.
      • Pause and stop for a visit at the Dunkeld Visitor Information Centre or the Hamilton Visitor Information Centre and enjoy free children's activities including colouring in, postcards and tailored itinerary with points of interest.

Find out more information about driver fatigue and drowsy driving here

 

TALK TO A LOCAL

Call our friendly team at the Hamilton and Grampians Visitor Information Centre for more info on our towns, villages, and the huge range of regional events.

#VisitGreaterHamilton

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