Looking for a perfect weekend away? Uncover all sorts of natural secrets in South Australia’s Gawler Ranges – from ancient rock formations and rugged landscapes, to salt lakes and unique outback wildlife.
Stargaze under outback skies
Stare up at the sky and you’ll be treated to viewings of the Milky Way, Saturn, Jupiter and the moon – among the millions of stars, of course. While it’s possible to view outer space with your own eyes and smartphone camera, a clear glimpse out into space is almost guaranteed by heading to Kangaluna Camp. As part of the Gawler Ranges Wilderness Safaris, you can treat yourself to some glamping beneath the stars, complete with an eight-inch computer-controlled telescope to peer into. Plus, if you’re wanting to have an expert guiding you through South Australia’s impressive Eyre Peninsula and surrounding outback, Gawler Ranges Wilderness Safaris also operates immersive tours. Win-win!
Climb the Organ Pipes
Formed by volcanic eruptions 1.5 billion years ago, the Gawler Ranges’ Organ Pipes are arguably the national park’s most famous attraction. Come here to experience the ancient landscape in all its glory. Thanks to the volcanic eruptions, the Organ Pipes are made up of long, pipe-like rhyolite rocks, known for being the most silica-rich of all volcanic rocks. Awash with terracotta outback soil and dotted with native greenery, the Organ Pipes are magnificent, to say the least. Admire this feat of Mother Nature close up with a climb to the top, or simply enjoy a stroll around the bottom of the summit. Either way, you’re in for a visual treat, so make sure you bring the camera along!
Hike to your heart’s content
Sometimes the landscape is best viewed on foot. While the car can certainly take you to a variety of places, in the Gawler Ranges you sometimes just have to lace up the hiking boots and see the view from above. Just about every camp site in the national park has a walking track that extends out to the Organ Pipes, and some trails take you on a loop of the land. Whether you’re wanting to break a sweat and test your endurance on a gruelling 10-kilometre hike, or simply just wanting to gently stroll for leisure, autumn is arguably the best time of year to enjoy South Australia’s Gawler Ranges.
The Autumn 2023 edition of Caravanning Australia is out now!
Image courtesy of iStock