The Eyre Peninsula is home to unique and native wildlife, flora and fauna and chock a block full of incredible road trips and amazing hidden beaches and rock-pools.
The westernmost of the 3 Peninsulas that make up South Australia’s southern coastline, the Eyre Peninsula is one of the most unique road trip experiences you can possibly have anywhere in South Australia, with specific landmarks along the way each with their own specialty.
It is the only known place in the world where Australian Giant Cuttlefish congregate en-masse to breed, and home to a pristine underwater world where Great White Sharks live and breed around the Neptune Islands.
Aside from fascinating rock pools and being the seafood capital of Australia, Laura and I saw more dolphins per day on our Eyre Peninsula road trip than anywhere else in South Australia – to the exclusion of our Dolphin swim with K.I Marine Adventures.
Your Ultimate Guide to Exploring the Eyre Peninsula
We visited the Eyre Peninsula during the summer months of February when the weather is still warm and beach day is everyday.
We hired a van from Cruisin Motorhomes for the month in a self contained van, where our home was one on wheels – everything from a toilet, shower, fully stocked kitchenette and our tiny espresso cafeteria!
Due to the size of the Eyre Peninsula you will be driving decently long distances in between destinations so bring a good book or audiobook for the journey!
READ MORE: Here’s our South Australia Travel Guide to plan your ultimate adventure
We’ve listed the best things to do on the Eyre Peninsula in order of when we visited them, so you get a sense logistically of when we visited them.
Get ready to explore the most fascinating parts of the Eyre Peninsula like Whalers Way, Lincoln national park, the Australian Giant Cuttlefish migration & Greenly Beach.
How to get to the Eyre Peninsula
If you don’t have a car and are flying in from different parts of the country there are 3 major airports on the Eyre, the first is in Whyalla – tucked away in the north of the Spencer Gulf.
The second is in the largest city of the Eyre Peninsula called Port Lincoln, and the third is in Ceduna – the beginning of the Nullarbor Plain heading into Western Australia.
Only two of those airline carriers are flying domestically within South Australia, Qantas and Rex, so your choices shouldn’t be too hard.
Flying from the capital city of Adelaide will be your best bet, for less than $200 one way, plus your baggage allowance.
If you did what we did and drove the whole way you can hire a car from our friends at see all campervan deals in Australia” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener nofollow” class=”rank-math-link”>Spaceship Rentals and get yourself a great deal.
The only road you need to know when driving down the Eyre Peninsula is the B100 – the Lincoln Highway. Easy to remember, easy to learn and one straight road down to Port Lincoln.
Best time to visit the Eyre Peninsula
The summer months between December and March are usually the warmest and driest months.
Due to some unsuualy weather conditions (la nina) we had varied weather patterns taht resulted in a lot of overcast and rain throughout our stay but this is not a reliable indicator for when to visit, so stick to these months and the weather gods will reward you (mostly!)
Eyre Peninsula Accomodation
Needless to say if you plan on driving long distances you’ll need somewhere to sleep for the night to help break up the drive.
Whilst we havent personally stayed at these places (we lived in our van) all of these places come highly recommened from people we met along the way.
Tumby Bay accomodation
Everything from x2 bedroom apartments, 4 bedroom apartments and a studio apartment, located right on the water at Tumby Bay, Modras Apartments are a great pit-stop for a few nights to help break up the journey.
Grand Tasman Hotel
If youre looking for somewhere close to the foreshore and right in the heart of Port Lincoln, the Grand tasan Hotel is a great choice.
With complimentary breakfast each morning and spectacualr views of Boston Bay, feast on Port Lincoln’s seafood menu wiht the whole family.
Your Ultimate Guide to Exploring the Eyre Peninsula in 2021
Whyalla is a very special place in South Australia, for more than one reason.
It is a major tourist hub for travellers coming through the main town of Port Augusta and the largest shopping precinct on the northern side of the Eyre Peninsula.
In recent years the council of Whyalla have the foreshore and created a unique circular 315m long jetty that has become a hot spot for tourists, attracting local pod of dolphins, rays and other marine creatures.
It is said to be a one of a kind jetty in the entire southern hemisphere.
These fascinating creatures migrate here en-masse for the largest known breeding congregation anywhere in the world.
We used Cowell as a pit stop along the way down to Port Lincoln and stoped in to have a local brew at the Franklin harbour Hotel.
Cowells position on the Eyre Peninsula means it has some of the oldest and largest deposits of nephrite jade anywhere in the world, and its buildings date back to constructions around the 1800’s.
The Franklin harbour, a 48 square kilometre natural harbour with calm, fish-filled waters has developed a reputation for being one of the best fishing destinations in South Australia.
Cowell is the entrance to the well known Lucky Bay and Port Gibbon.
Visit the Franklin Harbour visitor information outlet for more information
8 Main st. Cowell
ph: (08) 8629 2019
3) Port Lincoln
The capital city of the Eyre Peninsula, Port Linoln is the largest regional city on the Eyre Peninsula and is the home of the ‘Seafood capital of the world’.
Known worldwide to be one of 3 sites for Great White Shark cage diving off the Neptune islands, Port Lincoln definitely grows on you the longer you spend time here.
Laura and I used Port Lincoln as a home base on our Eyre Peninsula road trip between Whalers Way and Coffin bay further west, as well as heading back east towards Whyalla.
Boston Bay overlooks the main drag of Port Lincoln and its the largest protected natural harbour anywhere in the world; three times the size of Sydney Harbour!
If jumping in the water with Great White Sharks is too adventurous for you, why not try and swim with the puppies of the ocean in a unique and ethically driven wildlife encounter with Australian Sea Lions.
Once you’ve surfaced from your dive with the Great Whites, head on over to our favourite micro-brewery on the Eyre Peninsula: Beer Garden Brewing, the only established independent brewery on the Eyre Peninsula and well respected on the Eyre Peninsula.
Our favourite beer was the Original Sin, very reasonably priced with beer tasting platters available fo $12 p.p for 5 pots as well as delicious wood fired pizzas, a dog friendly environment with an awesome beer garden and patio area.
Tip: An elderly lady called Linda and her african friend Alpha meet every friday night at 5pm for food and drinks. We happened to be here at this time and had the most amazing time hearing their stories!
Head over to the Port Lincoln Visitor Information centre for more information
3 Adelaide Place, Port lincoln
4) Lincoln National Park
A short 20-30 minute drive south down Proper Bay road will take you to the entrance of Lincoln National Park.
An official national park on the south east corner of the Eyre Peninsula, surrounded by the waters of the Great Australian Bight and the southern ocean, it is geographically referred to as the Jussieu Peninsula.
Like all national parks, if you plan on staying the night you will need to pay per nights stay either online at the parks.sa website or by going into the visitor info centre yourself in Port Lincoln.
Hike up Stamford Hill for incredible views over Boston Bay or visit the Sleaford-Wanna dunes in your 4WD
The average price per night is anywhere from $12-15AUD, or you can do what we did and purchase a 2 month parks pass which will cover your entrance fee for the park.
You can purchase your South Australia parks pass via the link here.
Worth mentioning too that most of the park is only accessible via a 4WD car, however we stayed at Fishermans Point on the North with an almost empty campground. Beyond here we couldn’t access the rest of the park in our van.
5) Whalers Way
Our favourite Eyre Peninsula attraction and one of the best places to visit in South Australia was this privately run land called Whalers Way.
Whalers Way is 32km from Port Lincoln and an explorers paradise.
A wonderland of blowholes, crevasses, giant cliff faces, caves and rock-pools, Whalers Way get’s its name from the geographical shape of the land; a whales tail.
Read More: Use our handcrafted Whalers Way Guide to plan your next trip
No visit to South Australia is complete without first putting whalers way on your Eyre Peninsula itinerary.
Whalers way is accessed only via a locked gate at 94 Right Whale road, Sleaford.
You will need to either go into the Port Lincoln visitor information centre to pick up a key for $40 (including one night stay + park entrance) or pay online and get a keylock code for access.
Only 6.3 km wide and 4km long, the Eyre Peninsula’s Whalers Way has 14 points of interest worth checking out, with mostly dirt road access to all of those points off the waters edge.
Once again, all roads here are unsealed and phone and internet access is sketchy at best, so make sure you have your map on hand and read the siroad signs for directions. (if you break down, there is no public towing service available an it will cost you to ge your car towed out)
Book your Aussie Spaceship camper using the link below
6) Swimming Hole
Our first stop along Whalers Way was at the Swimming Hole, off Whalers Way Road.
Drving to the cliff edge over a sharp, rocky pathway and you will find a en enclosed, steel ladder that takes you down closer to the waters edge where you will find the swimming hole rock pools to the left and to the right.
Be very careful on a windy day and make sure you wear warm clothes and always tell people where you are going before you set off.
When the sun shines right on the rock pools however, the views are incredible and so hidden you would never know about this place if you didnt sum up the courage to visit,
7) Fur Seals at Cape Wiles
Hopefully Whalers Way forms part of your Eyre Peninsula road trip intinerary, because no road trip is complete without going to check out this Australian Fur Seal Colony from a small lookout at Cape Wiles.
Unfortunately there is no access down to the bottom, but the views are none the less sepctacular from the top – so make sure you have brough a good telephoto lens to zoom in on these guys.
If you still really want to have a unique wildlife encounter with Australian Fur Seals, heading back into town and enjoy a half-day Sea Lion snorkelling tour in Port Lincoln.
8) Baleen Rock Pools and Blowhole
Our favourite spots and one of the best things to do on the Eyre Peninsula was right here in Whalers Way, all the way west on whalers way road at Cape Carnot.
Both the Blowhole and the Baleen Rockpools are right next to each other and accessible at the end of the dirt road to the left of the carpark.
The Baleen rock pools are only visible via a short walk down to the cliffs edge where you will encounter a sign stating “ 4 people have died here”. Do not try and walk down to the rockpools as it is VERY dangerous and one sweeping wave could mean its all over for you.
The best spot to view the blowhole is at sunset from the top of the carpark at high tide when the swell is at its best.
9) Whalemans grotto and the caves
The end of your eyre peninsula road trip through whalers way ends at this point at the caves and old whalemans grotto.
From the carpark you will need to traverse down some sharp, steep rocks down to the grotto, where a couple of rockpools reveal themselves very close to the waters edge.
To the right of this are enormous caves carved into the side of the cliff that reveal the rest of the Eyre Peninsula coastline and the Cathedral rocks wind farm.
The waves down at the caves are relatively flat and calm so you shouldnt worry too much about freak waves here, but always be vigilant when your down by the waters edge.
10) Fishery Bay
A nice little stop on you way through to Whalers Way and an unreal eyre peninsula attraction is Fishery Bay.
When you get the fork in the road at the entrance to whalers way, turn left down the road instead and follow the signs all the way to Fishery.
A stunning stretch of white sandy beach where cars can drive along makes for the perfect beach pit-stop before you hit whalers way.
11) Coffin Bay
Getting to Coffin Bay is done by going back into Port Lincoln town and heading north west along the Flinders Highway, a short 30 minute drive across the Eyre Peninsula to discover a well known eyre peninsula attraction, the Coffin Bay oyster farm.
If you have the time on your Eyre Peninsula road trip when in Coffin Bay you should definitely check out the Coffin Bay Oyster farm tours.
This world-renowned oyster farm is a popular holiday destination with calm, pristine waters where you can swim, go kayaking and waterskiing.
12) Coffin Bay National Park
The Eyre Peninsulas in South Australia is so mysteriously hidden from the public that all the best things to do here are via word of mouth; Coffin bay National Park is on that list.
Located 40 minutes from Port Lincoln town, this is another one of those parks where a 4WD is really handy!
The only campground and beach accessible to non 4WD cars is Almonta Beach and staying at yangie Bay campground.
Make sure you book ahead here because it is the only campground 2WD accessible and fills up quickly.
13) Greenly Beach
We are not lying when we say Greenly beach stole our hearts as our most favourite beach on the entire Eyre Peninsula.
We made the long journey from Coffin bay to Greenly beach further up the West coast of the Eyre Peninsula to this fascinating stretch of sand, overlooked by a carpark full of campervans and roadies.
We had the pleasure of witnessing multiple passings of dolphins daily, discovered hidden rockpools on the furthest side of the beach and watched the sun rise and set each and every day.
14) Almonta Beach
A 25 minute drive from Coffin Bay along Point Avoid road to Almonta beach carpark and you have found yourself a slice of heaven at Almonta beach.
There are multiple angles you can tackle this beautiful 8km stretch of white sand, from the main beach in front of you down the stairs or take a walk around the right hand corner of the beach and find a collection of small rock pools and calmer waters looking out towards Golden Island.
From the beach we were lucky enough to spot a small pod of bottlenose dolphins cruising by the shore, playing and having a great old time.
15) Golden Island lookout
You can see golden island from down at the beach but even more impressive views from the top of the cliff at the circular Golden Island track.
Public toilets can be found at the top of the main carpark just before the staircase leading down.
What were your favourite places along the Eyre Peninsula?
The Eyre Peninsula is definitely the biggest of all 3 Peninsulas so driving in between destinations here is going to be what consumes most of your time.
That being said you should for sure allow at least 2 weeks here alone to really get the most out of your experience on the Eyre.
On your way back from the Eyre Peninsula, why not stop off at the 1st of the 3 Peninsulas and try doing the best things on the Fleurieu Peninsula.