Adelaide Hills Visitor Guide : Adelaide Hills Visitor Guide
adelaidehills.org.au 38 ENCOUNTERS Wildlife There are some great wildlife experiences that can all be accessed from your base in the Adelaide Hills. South Australia is a wildlife wonderland. You can get close to amazing animals, cuddle a koala, potter about with potoroos or watch a wallaby – all within an hour or so of Adelaide. The stringybark canopies are home to several signature species. Large flocks of Yellow-tailed Black cockatoos are a sensational sight – look for them roosting on the boughs of dead trees or making a noisy fly-past. There’s no mistaking the racket of kookaburras, which flourish in the forests, and if the creeks are flowing, keep an eye out for the Sacred Kingfisher for splashes of turquoise. The lower-storey brush is home to lively communities of smaller birds. You’ll usually see honeyeaters, finches and the well-named Superb Fairy wren – always seen in pairs, although it’s the male that dazzles with his blue cap. For something a little different, try the award- winning eco-certified winery and cellar door Sinclair’s Gully. It boasts an amazing array of nature-based activities, including wildflower walks, wine, wallabies, bonfire nights and the Junior Rangers Adventure Trail that will keep the kids happy. Animal action There are some excellent native wildlife parks in the Adelaide Hills. Both Cleland Wildlife Park and Warrawong Sanctuary make use of their stunning natural surrounds, with plenty of walking trails and opportunities to roam with wildlife. And, yes, it’s entirely possible to see koalas in the Adelaide Hills. They’re around all year, although spring and summer offer the best sightings – the trick is to look up and scan for unusual dark blobs wedged in a tree fork. Try the stringybark forests around Mount Lofty (including the Summit) and if you have no luck, neighbouring Cleland Wildlife Park has some very happy furry residents and they’re even content to be cuddled. Look out for sections of plastic mesh on the South Eastern Freeway’s concrete median barrier – they’re to help koalas climb the cliff face when they (unwisely) decide to cross the road. Cleland Wildlife Park Cleland is home to 130 native Australian species, including rare Yellow-footed Rock wallabies. Wander freely among kangaroos, wallabies, emus and water birds and see dingoes, Tasmanian devils, wombats, koalas and reptiles. This park is internationally famous for its koala close-ups, where you can meet and hold these loved residents. There are good walking trails through the park and organised night walks reveal a world of nocturnal native animals. Cleland Wildlife Park Gorge Wildlife Park It’s not your average wildlife park but a place where people and animals come together. Follow paths through the 14 acres of land, looking out for favourite Australian animals, such as koalas, kangaroos and wombats. There are also many exotic animals, including monkeys, alligators, meerkats, otters and more. You’ll also see a vast range of birds, from Fairy wrens to ostriches. There are koala- holding sessions every day. Saunders Gorge Sanctuary Located 18 kilometres from Mount Pleasant, Saunders Gorge Sanctuary is the largest privately-owned conservation project in the Adelaide Hills. Features include the Australian heritage-listed Saunders Gorge, a large array of native fauna, a wonderful diversity of native flora, spring-filled rock water holes, spectacular gorges and steep rugged hills. Stay in the self-contained accommodation, explore the rugged beauty of this spectacular property on the self-drive 4WD trail and enjoy scenic walks and hiking trails. Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary Warrawong is a delightful, tree and fern-filled space with serene platypus ponds. This natural paradise gives a powerful glimpse of Australia 200 years ago, and today is a sanctuary for native plants and rare and endangered animals. Take a guided nocturnal walk or a self-guided day time adventure along the waterways and into the rainforest. You may see bettongs, potoroos, bandicoots, wallabies, kangaroos, bilbies, quolls and platypus.
2013 Adelaide Hills Visitor Guide