Goolwa is a town on the Fleurieu Peninsula near the mouth of the Murray River (Australia's largest). The town faces both the ocean and the river.

Get in edit

The Southern Encounter Heritage train runs from Mount Barker in the Adelaide Hills to Goolwa and on to Victor Harbor two Sundays a month.

Premier Stateliner run a connecting coach service to Adelaide and Victor Harbor.

If you're driving, Goolwa is 18 km east of Victor Harbor along Port Elliot Road (B37).

Get around edit

See edit

  • 1 Goolwa Motor Museum, 45 Gardiner St, +61 8 8555 3338. A small motor museum that houses cars from the time when they were locally made in South Australia.

Explore the Murray River edit

Goolwa Barrage

The Murray is an integral part of life in Goolwa. The Murray/Darling River system is Australia's longest, with headwaters in the Snowy Mountains and in south-western Queensland. Goolwa is where the river system finally makes its way through its final lake system into the ocean.

Near the centre of Goolwa, you will find the wharf precinct. The tourist information, the old railway station, and the a historic interpretive walk line the river here. There is a map showing the extent of the lake system at the Murray mouth. There is also a cafe here on the water, and you can see the new Hindmarsh Island Bridge, and the old punt sitting idle underneath it.

The Murray at Goolwa and in Lake Alexandrina is fresh water. The salt water is held back by a series of 5 barrages built across the river and lakes. You can walk out half way across the Goolwa Barrages. You have to enter from the south, there is no access to the barrage (and you can't even really even see it) from Hindmarsh Island. There is a picnic area, interpretive signage, and electric barbecues at the site.

You can see the actual Murray Mouth from Hindmarsh Island in the Coorong National Park. Keeping the mouth open is an environmental activity undertaken by the constant dredging at the mouth. The exercise is undertaken to keep seawater flowing into the lower Murray, and stop the ecosystem from stagnating.

Do edit

  • Houseboating from Goolwa, all the way back up the Murray.

Buy edit

Eat edit

The dining room at the Australasian hotel is open Saturdays.

Drink edit

  • The Steam Exchange Brewery, Goolwa Wharf Precinct (Via Porter Street or Cutting Road), +61 8 8555 3406. Wednesday to Sunday 10AM–5PM. The Steam Exchange Brewery is the home of the Encounter Bay Brewing Company. There are always four house beers on tap, plus a few seasonals. The beers range from the flagship “Steam Ale” variety, through to India Pale Ales, strong dark English Ales, and Stout. All the house beers are available in bottles from the Brewery. There is indoor & outdoor seating - providing spectacular views looking across the river.

Sleep edit

Connect edit

Go next edit

  • Victor Harbor is a short drive, or a cycle, or a trip on the Cockle Train.
This city travel guide to Goolwa is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.