By John Pedler
Published: Tuesday, November 21, 2023
Family holidays can be expensive, but there are ways to save a few dollars and still have plenty of fun.
Check out these seven free activities.
1. Where the bunyip roams
Adelaide Park Lands, John E Brown Park
Set among tall timber beside the Torrens River, the 260m-long Bunyip Trail follows a series of nine storyboards that tell the tale of the Bunyip of Berkeley’s Creek.
Adapted from the book written by Jenny Wagner and illustrated by Ron Brooks, this engaging yarn includes a series of activities for kids and QR codes linking to more of the story.
2. Playground fun
Just 30km north of the Adelaide CBD, St Kilda Adventure Playground is an extensive seaside play space. Jam-packed with swings and slides, a castle, flying fox, basketball court, pirate boat, and more, it’ll easily wear out the kids.
Barbecues, shelters and lawned areas complete the picture for a fun day out with the family.
3. White kangaroos
Sitting beside the Dukes Highway, the Bordertown Wildlife Park is home to a mob of white kangaroos, which were first bred in the park in the 1980s. Other residents include emus, regular kangaroos, and an ostentation of showy peacocks.
You can’t access the wildlife park, but the animals are easy to see during a drive or stroll around the perimeter fence. It’s a great place for a break when you’re on your way to Melbourne.
4. Into the blue
Not to be confused with its larger iconic namesake, Little Blue Lake (main picture, ©Lucy Adamopoulos) is just south of Mount Gambier. Filling an almost circular limestone sinkhole, the lake’s chilly waters are a great way to cool down on a hot day.
Stairs and a pontoon allow access to the water, which has an average depth of 36m.
5. Yabby bonanza
You may have to buy (or borrow) yabby nets, but once you’re equipped, it’s time to catch a feed. These tasty crustaceans hang out in slow moving water like backwaters and billabongs.
Mid-spring to early autumn is considered the best time. Check the PIRSA website for yabby catching regulations.
6. On ya bike
Considered the Riesling Trail’s little sibling, the shorter Rattler Trail follows the same abandoned rail line. Stretching 19.5km from Riverton to Auburn, it’s a delightful cycle.
There’s a shelter at the old Rhynie rail station, and plenty of signs providing information on the region’s history.
7. Living the mangrove life
Arno Bay, Eyre Peninsula
A mix of elevated platform and pathway, the Arno Bay Estuary Boardwalk meanders through the mangroves and samphire flats beside Salt Creek. See how many fish you can spot in the stream’s crystal-clear waters, and keep an eye out for the many species of local birds.
A second boardwalk follows the creek from the car park down to the beach, passing viewing platforms and shelters.