South Australia Help with Itinerary

Old Jan 18th, 2017, 08:30 AM
  #1  
BKD
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 197
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
South Australia Help with Itinerary

I posted about a week ago about where to go in Australia. Since it included a visit with our daughter working a wine harvest in SA, some suggested even as a first timer to Australia to stay in SA. We arrive on a Saturday in late March and are going to spend the weekend with our daughter in Adelaide Hills for two nights. We want to return to Adelaide to see her the following weekend. Basically we then have 5 days to go other places.

Looked at Kangaroo Island and fell in love with Southern Ocean Lodge (you only live once), but they are booked. Have been searching around for other places to stay there, but have been somewhat uninspired. Recommendations? Or not KI at all?

So then we thought about going up to Uluru at Longitude 131 (again, you only live once). Alas, they are booked, too, and the Ayers Rock Resort looks like it is a huge touristy thing that we're really not into. Maybe our impression is wrong?

Barossa Valley looks great but it's so close to Adelaide we can do a day trip and we've been to wine country in California a number of times so I doubt it will be a unique Australia experience.

Any thoughts, recommendations, criticisms (really) are welcome. We are willing to get on a plane so long as it's not longer than about 2 hours. We have even considered Tasmania. In the end, we are looking for a uniquely Australian experience in a first class accommodation.

Thanks!
BKD is offline  
Old Jan 18th, 2017, 10:36 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 18,120
Received 83 Likes on 5 Posts
In my rather extensive wine tasting experience, wine regions/tasting in Australia (and NZ) is vastly different from wine regions/tasting in California/OR/Washington.

It's a much more personal encounter in OZ - you can often met directly with the wine maker, or at the very least, have a one-on-one casual, no pressure, often complimentary, wine tasting - many wineries also have excellent restaurants that showcase Australian's wonderful produce.

And US wine regions don't usually have emus, kangaroos and koalas.

But baring that, are you sure I can't talk you into Coober Pedy (a very unique outback experience) or Flinder's Ranges?

Granted, Coober Pedy isn't awash with posh hotels, but it's very unique.

http://www.cooberpedy.net/

Flinders Ranges is also unique and less driving = you might take a look at this place - I've stayed at this property, but we didn't go for the splash out eco-villas:

http://www.rawnsleypark.com.au/accommodation/eco-villa-

Or Robe?
http://www.robe.com.au/

Or, perhaps fly to Perth and spend your five days there? Only about a 2.5 hour flight (Jetstar has reasonable fares).

http://www.australia.com/en-us/places/perth.html

TAS is a possibility too, lots and lots to do there. I suspect you'd get there and wish you had another two weeks though.

What city do you fly through to get to Adelaide?
Melnq8 is offline  
Old Jan 18th, 2017, 01:28 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,561
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
>

The Ayers Rock Resort is basically the village of Yulara. There is absolutely NO BLOODY REASON to deal with the "huge touristy thing" whatever that may be. The fact is that the resort contains a variety of hotels and restaurants, a small supermarket, various shops with necessaries and if that's all you want to use it for, that's fine. You can also book outside the resort's website, often for far better rates.

The resort and the Rock can have nothing to do with each other as far as you're concerned - you can do whatever you want viz. the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park on your own. In fact, we did exactly that - rented a car, bought a pass for the park. Walked around the Rock, sunset at Kata Tjuta. Took one camel ride for the hobbits' benefit - one talked to her mount the whole time, the other chased the galahs at the tour shop parking lot. The park rangers give guided walks around part of the base of Uluru and may do the same for certain trails in KT (we didn't have time to check). If you rent your own car, you can trek to Kings Canyon or some other part of the NT before going back to Adelaide.

As for Aussie wine trips - unlike Barossa, you didn't have sulfur-crested cockatoos flocking around your lodgings in Napa nor the plethora of jacarandas. And I'm guessing that in Napa you also couldn't go to a nearby park and hike near the local wild kangaroo population. Similarly, unlike McLaren Vale area, I'm guessing you didn't have 'roos hopping across the road in front of your car in any part of the US wine country like we did.

There's ultimately nothing particularly rote to a non-Australian about going outside large Aussie cities.
BigRuss is offline  
Old Jan 18th, 2017, 06:20 PM
  #4  
BKD
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 197
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Big Russ, thanks for not holding back on the obviously deserved criticism! I appreciate your candor, really. You're probably right about the kind of animals one finds in Napa (two legged but they don't hop) versus what you might find in Barossa. We are going to find time to go to Barossa or McLaren Vale (or both!).

I'm intrigued with going to the Rock or Rawnsley Park. I came across a website for Gawlers Ranges called Kangaluna Camps. Anyone been?

Melnq8, never thought about Perth. You seem to really, really love Coober Pedy. Seems like a very quirky place that would be appealing.

Arghh. Very conflicted. Please keep suggestions coming! Thanks.
BKD is offline  
Old Jan 18th, 2017, 08:11 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 796
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Where is your daughter in the ADL Hills? It would maybe depend where else I would suggest here. I have been to Rawnsley Park a few times,stayed in the Eco villas and taken overseas guests there. You could also stay at The Prairie Hotel on the way. Everyone has always loved The Flinders area. The space,light and stars are magical.

I realise it is longer then 2 hrs,(3 1/2)but you could fly to Darwin. The weather would be getting better then.The wet season on the way out.See Kakadu,Berry Springs,Litchfield and other places.
huddoshols is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 07:00 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 18,120
Received 83 Likes on 5 Posts
I've been to the town of Gawler in SA, but I don't think I've been to Gawler Ranges.

Just a note - we liked Barossa much more than McLaren Vale, which is basically a suburb of Adealide and therefore quite busy and commerical - by that I mean it lacks the quiet laid back country feel of the Barossa, or at least it did for me.
Melnq8 is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 07:35 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 18,120
Received 83 Likes on 5 Posts
BKD - have you seen this website? I used it to plan both of our trips to SA.
Melnq8 is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 07:35 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 18,120
Received 83 Likes on 5 Posts
Oops:

http://southaustralia.com/en
Melnq8 is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 12:36 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,321
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
5 days is enough time to head over to Tassie but I wouldn't do any less and you'll wish you had more.

I do think KI is worth going to if you can accept lesser accommodations.
Patty is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 12:57 PM
  #10  
BKD
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 197
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Patty, the more I think about it the more I'd rather stay in SA. We'll just have to make another trip one day. KI does sound great. Where would you stay?

Huddo, daughter is in Langhorne Creek, which I understand is about an hour from Adelaide. The plan is for her to meet up with us closer to Adelaide so we picked Stirling and then actually in Adelaide for the second weekend. I was looking at Rawnsley Park and they have a 3 day package where you break up the drive in Clare and stay at the Clare Country Club and then 2 nights in the eco-villa. Thoughts??

Melnq8, yes that's a great website and I think I've been on just about every page. Do you think the Rock is worth going to? Big Russ obviously thinks so. Seems fairly easy to get to.

All of the options sound great and therein lies the problem....that I'm a Gemini so decision making does not come easy isn't helping....
BKD is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 01:04 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,321
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We stayed at Hanson Bay and loved the location but it's pretty basic self catering accommodations. Looks like they've added a couple of newer cabins since our stay.
Patty is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 02:40 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 18,120
Received 83 Likes on 5 Posts
Nice wine in Clare (but still like the Barossa better).

Can't comment about the Rock, never been. Couldn't garner up the interest during our seven years in Perth, just didn't see the attraction - expensive, hot, lots of flies - not our thing. We had some very big rocks in WA too

Same with KI - just didn't get the attraction, so much else to see in SA without paying a premium.

But that's just me. I tend to swim upstream.
Melnq8 is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 03:38 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,321
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Melnq8,
I'm curious what you mean by "paying a premium" as we didn't find KI to be all that different than elsewhere in Australia.
Patty is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 04:19 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 18,120
Received 83 Likes on 5 Posts
When you consider the cost to get there and back, via car and ferry, well, it adds up. AUS is expensive enough without going out of one's way to look for more expensive options, IMO.

And for what? SA and Australia in general is jam packed with wildlife, great food, fabulous beaches (although the best beaches are in WA IMO). I just don't get the attraction.
Melnq8 is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 05:23 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,321
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We went mainly for the wildlife and the ability to see several species on our wish list (not in a zoo) in a fairly compact area though I admit to not having been elsewhere in SA (other than Adelaide) to compare. We've spent more time in Tassie than anywhere else and that's still our favorite area but I think KI works well when you have a limited amount of time. Cost wise I also don't find traveling in Australia to be more expensive than in the US except for maybe food.
Patty is offline  
Old Jan 19th, 2017, 10:22 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 796
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
BKD I like the recent plan. Langhorne Creek is one of Australia's oldest wine areas. It's 30 min from where I live, in Stirling! Yes, where you meet your daughter. Many families have made wine for years and years there. Great reds. Lots of gum trees, local rivers and the ocean nearby. A beautiful area.

Clare and Rawnsley Park is a good combination. Some wonderful wineries, restaurants and heritage areas in Clare. If you do the Eco Villas, which I recommend, I would buy some supplies in Clare to take. There are limited food areas in Flinders. I preferred to use the BBQ on the deck and enjoy the stunning scenery. And you will have your Langhorne Creek or Clare wine as well. We are very spoilt in S. Aust.

Try to do a drive to Blinman and Parachilna. Two iconic Flinders towns. Stop in at the Prairie hotel for a drink. This area is used in many movies and S.Aust tourism adds. The drive through the gorge is amazing. Watch out for running emus and kangaroos. They will come out of nowhere.
huddoshols is offline  
Old Jan 20th, 2017, 08:04 PM
  #17  
BKD
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 197
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Huddoshols, can't believe you live in Stirling! We're staying at Sticky Rice villas. Where should we go while in Adelaide Hills?

I'm leaning toward Rawnsley Park. Wife is undecided. Based on your recommendation, Clare, Rawnsley Park, and then come back through Barossa Valley. Then spend a few nights in Adelaide to meet up with our daughter.

I don't think we can go wrong.
BKD is offline  
Old Jan 23rd, 2017, 07:44 AM
  #18  
BKD
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 197
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Wife has weighed in. Adelaide/Adelaide Hills for 3 nights to visit daughter. Then off to Tasmania for three nights and to Sydney for 3 nights. Will fly daughter to Sydney and be with her there. Thoughts?
BKD is offline  
Old Jan 23rd, 2017, 07:48 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,174
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Too much travelling over a short period.

What will you see in Tasmania for 3 days. You can't fly direct from Adelaide, but via Melbourne, so it'll take the best part of a day to get there.

The Clare / Flinders option was more sensible.
margo_oz is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2017, 05:24 AM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 18,120
Received 83 Likes on 5 Posts
Ditto what margo says.
Melnq8 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information