Cape Jervis is the departure point for the ferry service to Kangaroo Island, which lies off the mainland of South Australia, southwest of Adelaide. Over a third of the island is protected in nature reserves, home to native wildlife like sea lions, koalas and diverse bird species.
In the west, Flinders Chase National Park is known for penguin colonies and striking coastal rock formations, like the sculpted Remarkable Rocks and the stalactite-covered Admirals Arch. There is a variety of one or two day tours around the island or you can take your own car over, or hire one on the island, and do a self drive trip at your own pace.
Cape Jervis has a few Fishing Charter operators that offer fishing trips to catch the local Snapper, King George Whiting, Tuna (in season) to name a few. Gary Lloyd from Fleurieu Fishing Charters has a couple of charter boats to cater for this popular sport, contact Gary on 0408 833 145 to organise your own fishing trip.
Starfish Hill Wind Farm is a wind power station spread over two hills near Cape Jervis, South Australia. It has 23 wind turbines, eight on Starfish Hill itself and 15 on Salt Creek Hill, with a combined generating capacity of 34.5 MW of electricity.
Deep Creek Conservation Park is the largest portion of remaining natural vegetation on the Fleurieu Peninsula and is home to an array of native wildlife such as western grey kangaroos, short beaked echidnas and 100 species of birds that can be heard and seen while walking in the park. Whales can be seen cruising the coast during their annual migration which takes place from June to October.
Tallisker Mine Walk – this walk, in Talisker Conservation Park, guides you through a nineteenth century mining and ore processing operation. Learn about the ingenuity of the Cornish miners and their families as you walk through naturally regenerating bushland teeming with wildflowers and wildlife.
The Heysen Trail, 1200km long extends from Cape Jervis, on the Fleurieu Peninsula, to Parachilna Gorge, in the Flinders Ranges, traversing coastal areas, native bushland, rugged gorges, pine forests, vineyards, rich farmland and historic towns. It caters for both the serious backpacker hiking the entire trail and also for walkers doing day walks along the shorter sections.
The picnic area by the general store at Delamere has been colourfully decorated by local artists, residents and students from Yankalilla Area School and Rapid Bay Area School. The artists worked on developing artistic panels that are now permanently on display as part of the Leafy Sea Dragon Festival (now Festival Fleurieu) which is well worth a stop to enjoy the artwork.
Enjoy a short walk with the family to Ingalalla Falls, located on Hay Flat Road. The trail starts at the picnic area, following the creek upstream for 250 metres to reach the rock pools and waterfall. There are several picnic areas along the way.
See the unique Leafy Sea Dragons at Rapid Bay, Rapid Bay Jetty is the seadragon capital of the world and is one of Adelaide’s most popular dive sites due to its resident population of exquisite ornately camouflaged leafy or Glauert’s Seadragons (Phycodurus eques).
Visit the local golf courses at Wirinna Cove and Lady Bay
Pony Rides are available at High Country Trails at Lady Bay – ring 08 8558 2507 or 0408 795 373
Sample some locals wines at Allusion Winery at 127 Smith Hill Rd, Yankalilla SA 5203, Allusion Wines is a family owned and managed boutique winery set in the heart of South Australia’s beautiful fleurieu peninsula.
Take a walk around the Yankalilla Historical Museum located at 169 Main Road, Yankalilla to see some of the interesting relics from the district.
Take a visit to the Smiling Samoyed Brewery, Hansen Street Myponga 08 8558 6166 and taste their locally brewed beers and enjoy somethings from their food menu.
For something a bit more adventurous head over to Waitpinga Farm, 1161 Waitpinga Road, Waitpinga, the home of Quad Bike Adventures and select the adventure you have been wanting to go on.
If you are wanting to do something on the water give Rapid Bay Kayaking Tours a ring, 08 8295 8812 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and book a kayaking tour at the beautiful Rapid Bay area.
Or if you want to go under the water the local ship wreck of the HMAS Hobart is located just off Lady Bay in the Encounter Bay Marine Park it’s a very popular diving spot, full of marine life. Please note that a dive permit is required to dive there.
The beautiful city of Victor Harbor is a short 55km away, there you will find the famous horse drawn tram to Granite Island, Oceanic Victor where you can swim with the Tuna fish, just a few of the many activities that can be enjoyed there.
If you enjoy visiting wineries McLaren Vale is not far away, it has over 80 wineries to choose from and is most famous for its shiraz. It also has a great variety of places to shop, eat and enjoy a coffee.
Cape Jervis and Environs
Cape Jervis is home to some of the best sea and country views to be found in South Australia, with views that overlook Backstairs Passage and Kangaroo Island. Cape Jervis was named by Matthew Flinders after John Jervis, – Lord of the British Admiralty.
The local industries are dairy farming, cropping, tourism, commercial & charter fishing. Cape Jervis is predominantly known as the jumping off point for daily ferry services to Kangaroo Island, however, there are a few things to see and explore whilst you are in the area.
Here are a few ideas….
The Cape Jervis Lookout – Stunning views across backstairs passage towards Kangaroo Island with free binoculars mounted at the lookout.
Lands End & Boat Harbour is the tip of the mainland looking towards Kangaroo Island. Starting from the boat harbour and ferry terminals and heading south east, around to fisheries beach. At the boat harbour is a public jetty which is a popular spot for fishing or watching the activities in the harbour; – keep an eye out for dolphins and seals. Take a walk along the coast exploring the geography of the area whilst enjoying the views. The beach area is very similar to Fisheries beach in style and accessible on foot only.
The Cape Jervis Lighthouse and a marker for the location of the old lighthouse are just below the lookout at the boat harbour. The current, and very modern, lighthouse dates from 1972. This is a century after the first lighthouse on the cape which was first lit on the 10th August 1871.
The current light has a range of 18 nautical miles and is located on the headland known as Lands End. It is located 22 metres above sea level. The foundation of the original 1871 lighthouse is still visible in front of the current building. The current design is an inverted pyramid.
The old lighthouse, the new lighthouse and base of the old lighthouse. Up-close of the new lighthouse.
Morgans Beach is an 800m long west facing white sand beach, nestled below 50m high bluffs, up which a sand dune has almost succeeded in reaching the top.
It is easily accessible to the public and provides the safest swimming in the area, as it is relatively free of rocks and reefs.
All the other beaches, while receiving relatively low waves, are dominated by rocks.
Ideal in any weather, bar a strong northerly 4WD access is available. Just beware of our wildlife, especially the Sandpiper who nests on the ground in the area.
Take the Gravel road out of Cape Jervis to the bluff overlooking the southern end of the beach.
Rock reefs are at the southern third of the beach, with a sandy seabed off the centre and northern end. Waves average about 0.5m – so no good for surfing.
Fisheries Beach is also, a great fishing spot, (not so great for swimming). It is a curving south facing beach consisting of a strip of sand and cobbles to the west but dominated by rocks and reefs, from the front and in the east. Look for the ruins of the old whaler’s station, Whaling and settlement were here from the early 1830’s. Ore crushing and dressing operated here during the early 1860’s.
The 1200km Heysen Trail starts here. From the Cape Jervis trailhead, this section follows sandy coastal tracks and exposed coastal hillsides.
It provides spectacular views over Backstairs Passage to Kangaroo Island. Walkers are often rewarded with sightings of seals and dolphins.
At Blowhole Beach the trail enters Deep Creek Conservation Park to begin the long climb through native bushland to Cobbler Hill.
You don’t have to do the whole lot. But there are sections that are easy to access, and the views are amazing.
Fishing Charters – Various companies operate from Cape Jervis, Snapper, Whiting, Salmon, Yellowtail kingfish, Sharks, Trevally, Squid, Snook and more? There is always an opportunity to wet a line, or maybe just a day out. Speak to us to help you contact a local operator.