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Goolwa, SA

Historic Goolwa stands at the mouth of the Murray River on Lake Alexandrina and derives its name from an aboriginal word meaning elbow.


Every type of water sport is available in Goolwa, and if you don’t own a boat you can always hire one. Hindmarsh Island and the Coorong provide kilometres of unspoiled wetlands and at the end of the day you can enjoy award winning local wines. It’s an ideal destination, just over an hours drive from Adelaide through breathtaking countryside.

The nearby Murray Mouth is renowned for its mulloway fishing, while surf fishing from Goolwa Beach is usually rewarding for the angler. The lakes are a haven for boating enthusiasts. With both fresh and salt water, Goolwa is a Mecca for the keen fisherman and the Murray Mouth is not only a great place to fish but also a remarkable feature of the landscape.

The first part of Goolwa was surveyed in 1840. With the introduction of paddle steamers to the river in 1853, Goolwa became the first major shipping port in the state, with produce from the interior being barged down the Murray system for loading onto overseas vessels.

The subsequent silting-up of the Murray Mouth led to the port becoming inaccessible to the larger ships. As a result, the first railway line in South Australia was opened between Goolwa and Port Elliot in 1854, the latter then becoming the overseas port. Early in the 1880s the Morgan railway took away most of the trade by directing it through Adelaide, and by 1890 shipping was virtually finished at Goolwa. Today Goolwa is a popular, fast-growing tourist resort offering quiet, relaxing all-year-round recreation with its historic buildings greatly enriching the town’s interest.


Where to stay?

Popular Activities

  • Sightseeing
  • Fishing
  • Fishing - Beach

About Goolwa

  • Locality: Urban locality
  • Goolwa Postcode: 5214
  • State: South Australia
  • Region: Fleurieu Peninsula
  • Latitude: -35.50256
  • Longitude: 138.78459
  • Elevation: 10m
  • Population: 2350
  • Median Income: $23868
  • Area (Sq/km): 17.345
  • Timezone: Australia/Adelaide

Tours In Goolwa

Discover some of the tours options around Goolwa

Explore The Outback

Australia has a vast remote interior, much of it largely untouched. By night, the outback is deathly quiet, with the only light provided by the stars and the moon - a perfect oportunity for stargazing. Explore the isolated heart of the country, meet and connect with Aboriginal people and experience one of the oldest living cultures in the world. Go ‘walk-about’ and immerse yourself with Australia’s endless outback horizons.

Outback Experiences

Luxe Accommodation

Enjoy a distinctly Australian luxury experience, such as the unforgettable reefs, islands, beaches and coast; rugged mountain ranges, rainforests and vast national parks; and the many vibrant food and wine regions. Take a once in a lifetime adventure and discover the sheer indulgence of experiencing the wonders of Australia in style and stay in total luxury.

Australia has wide variety of accommodation options to suit most budgets and travelling preferences. Choose from luxury lodges, boutique hotels, serviced apartments, motels, bed and breakfasts, caravan parks as well as youth and backpacker hostels.


Glasshouse Mountains

The Glasshouse Mountains in the hinterland of Queensland’s Sunshine Coast are actually the cores of 20 million year old volcanoes. The sides of the volcanoes have eroded away leaving only the hardened rock spiremountain cores we see today. Learn more about this awe-inspiring landscape.

Glasshouse Mountains