Innes National Park was the National Parks SA/Nature Play SA Park of the month for January 2019 and because it’s one of my favourite places to visit we’ve come up with a few Innes Itinerary ideas in case you’re planning a school holiday visit
So, where is Innes you ask? Innes National Park is located on the Yorke Peninsula, around 3.5 hours from Adelaide. You’ll more than likely head North out of Adelaide to Port Wakefield, turn left and drive past Ardrossan, Minlaton, Warooka and then into Marion Bay, the last town before you hit Innes.
Who would love it? There is something for everyone at Innes but keen surfers, campers and fisher(wo)men this is your national park paradise! Unfortunately mountain bikers are furry friends are not permitted.
What would my kids love the most?
If blue water, white sand and not many people is your idea of beach heaven, Innes has them!
Spend hours exploring the crystal clear rock pools at Shell Beach, swim in the bluest of blue waters at Dolphin Beach, drive your car onto the beach at
Pondalowie or watch the surfers from the deck at Chinaman’s Hat.
Innes is a surfers delight with waves for kids and beginners at places like Pondalowie Bay right up to world class lefts at “Chi’s”
Ahoy! Go Shipwreck Hunting
Over 40 shipwrecks lay off the coast of Innes National Park and you can follow the maritime trail along the coast line to read the stories that go with some of the more famous ones including The Ethel, that came to grief in 1904. When sand conditions are right you can see The Ethel wreck, as well as the partially buried boiler of the Ferret on the same beach.
You can also read about the Pareora at Cape Spencer lighthouse while checking out the sunset! (see below) Check in at the Innes Visitor centre for more info on the Shipwreck Trail.
Go Bush Camping
Innes offers two large campgrounds at Stenhouse Bay and at Pondalowie that are suitable for caravans, trailers and tents as well as five smaller grounds within the park for proper bush style tent camping. Wake up to the sound of the waves, catch your own fish for dinner, and do some incredible star gazing right from your tent. Sites are limited and you need to book them online here
A spectacular sunset at Cape Spencer Lighthouse
Head to Cape Spencer lighthouse about half an hour before sunset (you can check what time that is here) and do not forget your camera! Even if it’s cloudy the views across the cliffs and out over Investigator Strait are spectacular.
Play spotto for Emus!
Step back in time and explore the Inneston village and the ruins of an abandoned gypsum town along the Inneston Historic walk. It was a fully run town with 500 residents at its peak but by 1970 Inneston had become a ghost town as mining operations ceased. A very interesting walk through history.
When to go
This is a great park to visit all year round. Summer is warm and dry, great for camping and perfect for the beach. Autumn is cooler and best suited to bushwalking and sightseeing. In spring, you’ll be rewarded with a park in magnificent colour as the wildflowers bloom.
Winter transforms the park into a fresh green landscape, with wild seas and large surf.
For more info about Innes National Park take a look at our Park of the Month post – www.kidsinadelaide.com.au/nature-play-sa-park-month
Or visit the Parks SA website www.parks.sa.gov.au