Follow the Coastal Way road trip through Yorke Peninsula, along more than 700 km of coastline.
Kick back in a holiday shack where the beach is literally on your doorstep. Feel the sand between your toes and the salty breeze in your hair. Don’t wonder about the one that got away – it’s waiting at the end of your line on one of Yorke Peninsula’s famous fishing spots. Road trip around the Yorke Peninsula's sandy playground and discover pristine beaches, secluded hideaways, quirky towns and sprawling national parks on the Coastal Way road trip. Download the Coastal Way road trip map and follow our guide to the best things to see and do along the Coastal Way road trip.
1. Port Vincent
Overlooking the calm waters of St Vincent Gulf on the east side of the Yorke Peninsula, locals flock to the seaside village of Port Vincent for its family-safe sheltered beach and laid-back coastal lifestyle. Soak up the sun on the sandy shores of the town’s protected beach and plunge into the tranquil turquoise waters from the famous wharf jump before refueling with fish and chips from the popular beachside kiosk. Make the most of Port Vincent’s calm waters and hire a kayak or stand up paddleboard from Port Vincent Outdoors to explore the coastline or cast a line of the jetty and haul in garfish, squid, snook, flathead and King George whiting. When dinner calls, settle down at a table by the sea at the Ventnor Hotel for a quality pub meal. By night, check-in to the beachfront Port Vincent Foreshore Caravan Park or Seaside Cabins, or settle down at one of the town’s many beachside abodes.
If you’re feeling hungry on the road, stop off at Stansbury; the stronghold for an impressive bounty of fresh oysters hauled straight from the Yorke Peninsula waters. Pluck oysters fresh from the ocean yourself and be a deckie for the day on a working oyster boat with Pacific Estate Oysters. Journey out to oyster leases, learn the tricks of the trade then shuck and chow down on the freshest oysters you’ll find. If oysters aren’t your thing, then seaside bliss awaits on Stansbury’s picturesque Oyster Bay with calm waters making it the ideal spot for a dip. You’ll likely get to meet the locals too; dolphins are often spotted frolicking in the sheltered waters in the morning and evening. From October to May, the monthly Stansbury Markets take over the foreshore with stalls selling everything from fresh oysters, to wine, arts and crafts, pastries, and fishing supplies.
3. Marion Bay
Sitting on the doorstep of Innes National Park, Marion Bay is an idyllic coastal town popular for swimming, fishing and surfing. With a sheltered swimming beach on one side and a surf beach on the other, it’s the perfect spot for your salt water fix. The town is also a popular fishing destination with plenty of spots to cast a line and try your luck beach, jetty, rock and surf fishing. After a day spent beachside, quieten your rumbling stomach at the Marion Bay Tavern where you’ll find all the local seafood staples, paired with a fine wine bar and wood fired pizza menu before retreating to your very own deluxe beachfront cabin in a Hillocks Ocean Pod, seaside serenity at My Sister and The Sea or pitching your tent by the ocean at Marion Bay Caravan Park.
4. Innes National Park
Escape to a remote coastal wilderness on the tip of the Yorke Peninsula and soak in the sun without another soul in sight. It’s easy to find your very own slice of eutopia in Innes National Park; just pull up the car, set up camp for the weekend and while away the days swimming, fishing, surfing, boating and bush walking through this remote slice of Australiana where pristine beaches meet bushland teeming with wildlife. The Yorke Peninsula is brimming with beautiful beaches and this neck of the woods packs more than its fair share. Be sure to check out Dolphin Beach, Shell Beach and Pondalowie Bay. Cape Spencer Lighthouse, the historic township of Inneston, the Maldives-material blue waters of Inneston Lake and the Ethel shipwreck are also well-worth a look.
5. Daly Head National Surfing Reserve
The surf’s always up on the Yorke Peninsula and the breaks off the coast of Daily Head National Park have become the stuff of surfing legend. On the southwest coast of the peninsula a stone’s throw from the small seaside village of Corny Point, the conditions of Daly Head’s pristine waters are renowned as some of the best for surfing in Australia and the world. One of only 19 National Surfing Reserves across Australia, keen surfers from around the country and abroad flock to these waters to carve up the impressive waves. Conveniently, there’s a bush camp right on the coast so you can pitch a tent and spend a few days soaking in the surf, sand and sun. Here's our guide to South Australia's best surf spots.
6. Baker Bros Gallery, Warooka
Baker Bros Gallery is the perfect pit stop on the road trip to grab a coffee and browse the local produce offerings, from freshly grown garlic and citrus fruits to homemade fruit and vegetable preserves. Tucked in a historic building in Warooka, the gateway to the tip of the Yorke Peninsula, the gallery showcases an eclectic array of local artist's work including ceramics, glassware, driftwood sculptures, photography, paintings, handmade furniture and lamps. After you’ve shopped up a storm, continue exploring. Just outside of Warooka, insta-famoous pink lakes dot the landscape while minute’s away lay some of the peninsula’s best beaches.
Sitting centre-stage to the Yorke Peninsula and surrounded by golden fields of barley, Minlaton is home to Watsacowie Brewing Company. Pouring brews created with local barley, take a day off from driving and sip your way through their impressive selection of craft beers with a tasting paddle and platter from the cellar door. Beyond the beer, the agricultural town also has a rich aviation history to discover. In 1919 Captain Harry Butler flew his Bristol monoplane to make the first mail-service flight over water in the Southern Hemisphere. He flew 108km from Adelaide to his home town, Minlaton, in 27 minutes. The Red Devil Bristol – the last of its kind – is on display as you come into town. You’ll also find cafes and a handful of shops scattered down the town’s main street, as well as a golf course.
8. Port Hughes
Reel in a whopper from Port Hughes, one of the best spots to cast a line on the Yorke Peninsula. Anglers flock to these waters with blue swimmer crabs, garfish, tommies and squid regular fare from the iconic long jetty. If you want to sup on seafood without having to catch it yourself, then head for The Deck Bar & Cafe. With glorious views over the dunes and the ocean, it's the perfect place to eat, drink and relax. Behind the café lies the Copperclub Golf Course so you can tee-up after lunch and enjoy a spot of golf on a PGA standard course designed by Australian golf legend Greg Norman. Port Hughes is also home to one of the most picturesque beaches on the peninsula and boasts an abundance of accommodation options including the popular beachfront Port Hughes Tourist Park.
The shallow waters around Moonta Bay are a favourite for city-living families looking to get away from it all. This idyllic summer escape is the perfect spot to unplug, unwind and spend long summer days swimming, surfing, fishing, fossicking along the shoreline and watching the sunset over the ocean. Just a scenic two-hour drive from Adelaide, the waters around here are also teeming with delicious blue swimmer crabs at the right time of year (locals tell us that’s every month with an ‘r’ in its name). Moonta’s rich history has earned the town national heritage status and you can uncover its famous past on one of the Moonta Mines Walking Trails or inside the Moonta Mines Museum. Make sure you stop by at one of the bakeries to sample one of Moonta’s famous Cornish pasties – a delicious remnant from the historic town’s mining past.
One of the most popular coastal escapes on the Yorke Peninsula, Wallaroo is a seaside paradise plonked in prime position on the west coast of the peninsula, just a two-hour drive from Adelaide. The holiday hotspot is a favourite family destination and boasts sandy beaches perfect for swimming, a rich maritime history, chic cafes and a plethora of beachside accommodation options. Fishing fanatics flock to Wallaroo to cast a line off the famous jetty; expect good hauls of snapper, King George whiting, squid and flathead. Check into Wallaroo Marina Apartments and head straight for a dip at Office Beach or drive right onto the sand at North Beach and dive into the surf before refueling with a cold one and fresh seafood at the Coopers Alehouse Restaurant.