South Australia is home to some of the most scenic landscapes in the country, so it's no surprise that the state is criss-crossed with unmissable hiking and walking trails.
From the secluded coves of the Yorke Peninsula to the ancient mountains and valleys of the Flinders Ranges, there’s no shortage of trails that offer breathtaking views and a chance to get up close and personal with the local flora and fauna.
Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or a social stroller, lace up your walking shoes and hit the road with our guide to the very best walking trails in South Australia.
1. River Torrens Linear Trail, Adelaide
Distance: 35 km
The River Torrens Linear Trail runs along the banks of the River Torrens, through the Adelaide CBD and onto Henley Beach, where you can grab a coffee at one of the beachside cafes or cool off with a dip in the ocean. Popular with locals and tourists alike, spend a Sunday afternoon meandering along this family-friendly trail and discover Adelaide Oval and Festival Plaza along the way.
2. MURRAY RIVER WALK, RIVERLAND
Distance: 40 km
Difficulty: Easy to Hard
Consider yourself a nature lover? Take on the four-day Murray River Walk and experience the best of hiking in Australia. Whether you choose to do it with a guide or without, this celebrated walking trail along the majestic Murray River features red gum forests, limestone cliffs, sandy beaches and tranquil wetlands—with unforgettable river views at almost every turn.
3. HEYSEN TRAIL, FLEURIEU PENINSULA TO FLINDERS RANGES
Distance: 1,200 km
The Heysen Trail is Australia’s longest marked walking trail, attracting keen hikers from all over the world. Stretching 1200 km from Cape Jervis on the Fleurieu Peninsula to Parachilna Gorge in the Flinders Ranges, this trail winds through coastal bushland, rugged mountain ranges and Barossa Valley vineyards. Writer’s tip: weathered trekkers can take a crack at the whole trail, but if you’re looking for a short day hike we recommend completing a section of the Adelaide Hills trail, like the Cleland to Montacute Heights trail.
4. Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail, Kangaroo Island
Distance: 61 km
There is no better way to experience Kangaroo Island than by exploring its remote coastline on a five-day trek along the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail. Due to bushfire damage the trail is currently only open to licensed tour operators, but from December 2023 it will reopen to the public. Discover the unique botany of the island and explore the famous Admiral’s Arch and Remarkable Rocks, while taking in stunning views of the ocean below.
5. Southern Ocean Walk, Fleurieu Peninsula
Distance: 49 km
The fully-hosted Southern Ocean Walk is a four-day hike along the rugged coastline of the Fleurieu Peninsula. With the Southern Ocean as your constant companion, you'll traverse untouched beaches, striking waterfalls and dense forests, before returning to your accommodation each night in the heart of Deep Creek Conservation Park.
6. Riesling Trail, Clare Valley
Distance: 35 km
Walking with a side of wine? You’ve come to the right place – the Riesling Trail in the picturesque Clare Valley wine region connects the quaint villages of Auburn and Barinia, with plenty wineries and cellar doors along the way. Originally a railway line dating back to the 1860s, this walking trail is flat and family-friendly – don’t miss the Skilly Valley lookout for panoramic views of the Clare Valley below.
7. DEEP CREEK CIRCUIT, FLEURIEU PENINSULA
Distance: 12 km
If you’re up for a challenge, the single-day Deep Creek Circuit offers stunning views of the Deep Creek Conservation Park and the Southern Ocean. Discover waterfalls, secret beaches, rolling hills and native wildlife such as Western Grey Kangaroos, Short Beaked Echidnas, and around 100 different bird species in the surrounding bushland.
8. THE ARKABA WALK, FLINDERS RANGES AND OUTBACK
Distance: 45 km
Experience the timeless beauty of the ancient Flinders Ranges with the Arkaba Walk. Named one of 12 Great Walks of Australia, this trek will take you on three or four-day guided tour over 60,000 acres of privately owned outback, where you'll have the chance to sleep under the stars and in the comfort of the Arkaba Homestead. Set against the backdrop of the Elder Ranges and Wilpena Pound, experience outback hospitality with expert guides that will guide through the bush.
9. WALK THE YORKE TRAIL, YORKE PENINSULA
Distance: 500 km
The Walk the Yorke Trail spans the entirety of the Yorke Peninsula from Port Wakefield to Moonta Bay. One of the most highly renowned walking trails in South Australia, the hike offers access to some of the country’s most stunning coastal landscapes. Whether you’re interested in a short stroll, a day walk or a more challenging multi-day hike, you’ll be rewarded with pristine beaches, secluded coves, rugged cliffs and windswept sand dunes.a
10. HALLETT COVE BOARDWALK, ADELAIDE
Distance: 7.2 km
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Also known as the Marion Coastal Walking Trail, the Hallett Cove Boardwalk is a popular clifftop boardwalk between Marino Rocks and Hallett Cove, approximately 20 minutes from the city centre. With unbeatable views of the coastline, take a detour to see the geographical wonder known as "Sugar Loaf," - a rock formation that resembles a giant lump of hard refined sugar.
Before you go
Before any hike, make sure you are fully prepared by checking walk difficulty levels, current trail and weather conditions and book campsites ahead of time with the Department for Environment.
Explore South Australia’s waterfalls
Like your walks paired with a picturesque waterfall? Check out our guide to the best 10 waterfall walks in South Australia, from leisurely strolls to hard-core hikes.