Hike Adelaide's southern beaches and hills: discover the Willunga Basin Trail

Summary of what we provide and why you should contact us

Important Information: Trail Status Updates

Section 5: there are no or few signs at present between the northern end of Maslin Beach and the southern end of Moana Beach. Please follow path at the edge of the beach, the rocks near the edge and the beach over this 1.2 km stretch which can be quite challenging. Do not go up onto the cliff which is a conservation area and culturally sensitive. Look out for the marked hooded plover sites. Please refer to Section 5 description. The total distance between Maslins Beach (Frank Hilton Reserve) and Moana at Pedlers Creek estuary is 3.6km.

SECTION 5: Maslin Beach to McLaren Vale

12.8 km Moderate Hike, Grade 3

FROM: Car park at southern end of Gulf Parade, Maslin Beach, SA 5170

TO: McLaren Vale & Fleurieu Coast Information Centre, McLaren Vale, SA 5171

Start the walk from the section end post at the southern end of Gulf Pde.  Walk up the road and turn left to a cliff path with a great outlook. Follow this path through to the next car park at Frank Hilton Reserve where a sealed path crosses a bridge and leads down to the beach. 

From here, it is a beautiful 3.6km walk along the coast. Check for tides as this walk should not be attempted at very high tides. A wide sandy beach leads to a rock wall. Crossing this you will soon be rounding Ochre Point. The beach is rocky, and there are beautiful cliffs and much of geological interest. Keep close to the landward side of the beach where the going is made easier by a small path below the cliffs. Sometimes you will have to clamber over rocks. Do not be tempted to go inland or up one of the many gullies; this is fragile conservation land with great heritage value. Cross a small beach, more rocks and another stretch of the little path below the cliffs and you will eventually come to Moana Sands beach, another wide sandy beach. In due course you come to the estuary of Pedler Creek. Cars are allowed on the last 800m of this beach.

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Just past the Pedler Creek estuary, turn into a beach access walkway and come out below a 3-storey residential building. Turn right, away from the facilities of Moana Sands, and enter a path with Pedler Creek on the right and houses and Moana Sands Caravan Park on the left. This path brings you to Nashwauk Cres. Turn right and follow the shared use path on the south side, crossing to the north side just before the intersection with Commercial Rd. Cross this busy road and walk up Dalkeith Rd on the north side for 200m to a bridge where you cross to enter the Dalkeith wetland. 

This managed wetland is a lovely peaceful area adjacent to Pedler Creek, with lots of birdlife. The trail makes its way alongside and between ponds and continues on a path through the Pedler or Kityparri Reserve. Look out for a post directing you off the path to the left and up a grassy slope. At the top turn right along an old fire track with the houses of Seaford Rise beside you on your left. Follow this track for 500m until you reach an old gate. Slip through here, turn slightly left up a slope. Follow the path northwards alongside the property fences until you intersect with a shared use path.

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Turn right on this path, the Coast to Vines Trail, built on the old railway line and soon you go under Main South Rd. You follow this trail all the way to McLaren Vale (4.5km) walking through a valley formed by Pedler Creek. Keep to the left and look out for fast cyclists; there are 4 places where signs indicate you can loop off the shared path onto quiet paths for walkers on softer ground. 

Finally, go under Victor Harbor Rd (the other arterial road which crosses the Basin) and follow the shared use path around to the Visitor Information Centre, where there are many facilities as well as local information. The path follows beside Pedler Creek which you have been near since Moana. The Section end post is on a large Council totem close to the intersection of the Coast to Vines Trail (also known here as the Shiraz Trail), with Main Rd, McLaren Vale. 

Notes
Car Parking
  • large car park and access to the beach at southern end of Gulf Parade, Maslin Beach
  • large car park at the McLaren Vale & Fleurieu Coast Information Centre, McLaren Vale 
Beach walking
  • 3.6 km beach walking is part of the route between Frank Hilton Reserve, Maslin Beach and Moana
  • check for high tides when walking on beach
Dogs
  • dogs on lead 10am-8 pm during daylight savings between Ochre Pt and Moana
  • look out for Hooded Plovers: dogs on lead within 100m of any sign on the beach and prohibited within 100 m of any nesting site which is fenced or has bunting
  • dogs on lead on Coast to Vines (aka Shiraz Trail), a shared use trail

Useful Resources

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Local Weather

When planning a walk please check local weather conditions to ensure a safe and comfortable experience

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Fire Danger Ratings

The Trail is closed when the Fire Danger rating is Extreme or Catastrophic. These are Total Fire Ban Days; most likely to occur between the first of November and April. The Trail is in District 2 Mt. Lofty Ranges

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Tides Information

When planning to walk along the beach (Section, 3,4 & 5) it is important to check predicted height and timing of the local tides to ensure access to the beach

Trail Sections

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SECTION 1

Willunga to Louds Hill Rd

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SECTION 2

Louds Hill Rd to Sellicks Esplanade

SECTION 3

Sellicks Esplanade to Hart Rd Wetlands

SECTION 4

Hart Rd Wetlands to Gulf Pde, Maslin Beach

SECTION 5

Gulf Pde, Maslin Beach to McLaren Vale Visitor Centre

SECTION 6

McLaren Vale Visitor Centre to Gate 20 Onkaparinga River National Park

SECTION 7

Gate 20 Onkaparinga River National Park to Kangarilla

SECTION 8

Kangarilla to Wickham Hill & Toops Hill Roads

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SECTION 9

Wickham Hill & Toops Hill Roads to Edwards & Hamilton URRs

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SECTION 10

Edwards & Hamilton URRs to Willunga

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SECTION 11

Gate 20 Onkaparinga River National Park to Edwards & Hamilton URRs

SECTION 3

Sellicks Esplanade to Hart Rd Wetlands

Willunga Basin Trail map

Become A Volunteer

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Volunteers have built the Trail by participating in regular work sessions to clear vegetation, plant trees, install signs, benching the track surface. Find out more about the building and the history of the trail

If the idea of getting out on the trail, with a lively bunch of friends to maintain the Trail and develop new loops and connections, appeals to you, then join WBT Inc

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Plan a Visit in Willunga Basin

The Willunga Basin is an easy 40-minute drive from Adelaide along the Southern Expressway. Hire cars are available in locations throughout Adelaide, including the Adelaide Airport (International, Domestic & Regional)Adelaide Airport.

Regular rail services from Adelaide to Seaford Railway station and the Trail is just 2.1 km  away in SECTION 5. Regular bus services between the southern Adelaide metropolitan area (Noarlunga and Seaford) and the local towns, or from Seaford Railway station Adelaide Metro.

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