Explore South Australia’s remote Eyre Peninsula and discover spectacular raw beauty, iconic wildlife encounters, ancient Indigenous culture and hidden secrets only accessible with an expert local guide.
Taste oysters shucked straight from the ocean, savour bush foods, learn of dreamtime stories and connect on a deeper level to the local Indigenous community. Come eye to eye with wild koalas as you embrace an extraordinary side of Australia you could only dream of. Known as the Australia’s Seafood Frontier, an array of fresh prawns, mussels, squid and crab will tempt you. Your taste buds will lead the way. Discover rolling sand dunes, sapphire waters and white sandy beaches dotted with emus. For those seeking a thrill, swim with sealions or cage dive with sharks. Sip on sundowners listening to traditional Australian bush poetry as you watch the sunset over this wild rugged land. Welcome to South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula.
Welcome to the seafood capital of Australia, Port Lincoln! This morning you will depart from your hotel at 10.30am before setting off to explore the fascinating town of Port Lincoln, resting on the shores of stunning Boston Bay in the Southern Eyre Peninsula.
Your first stop is one of the best viewing areas in South Australia – Winter’s Hill. From this vantage point, you can see the city of Port Lincoln, Boston Island, Boston Bay and all the way out to the stunning Port Lincoln National Park. Absorb the 360 degree view towards Coffin Bay and the lower west coast of the Eyre Peninsula. This is a superb photo opportunity, as you gain your bearings of where you will be exploring over the coming days.
From here, explore the wharf and impressive silos. See where the countries best seafood is processed before a true ocean to plate experience, at the Fresh Fish Place. Here, we take you behind the scenes of the fish processing factory. You will learn about the aquaculture industries, the diversity in local fishing and observe how the fisherman’s catch is received, packed and stored. You will see many varied species, learn how oysters are opened, prawns are peels and how to clean squid and witness the famous King George Whiting being filleted at high speeds.
After watching the incredible processes which take place, it is time for a tasting. Enjoy the renowned Coffin Bay Oyster and tasting the in-house smoked fish along with pickled Mussels, Scallops, Squid and Coffin Bay Octopus. Enjoy lunch here before exploring Port Lincoln’s marina with its impressive fishing boats and understand further, the connection to the ocean.
This afternoon, return to your hotel to freshen up, before a five minute stroll to Del Giorno’s for a tasting menu. Savour a mixture of local fresh seafood and land products that of course are all locally produced. Start off with a tasting of Hiramusa yellowtail kingfish sashimi, Southern bluefin tuna sashimi and Coffin Bay oysters – natural – Tokyo – pickled ginger, soy sauce, mirin & wasabi. Entrée is followed with Devilled scallops – wrapped in bacon, with steamed rice and chilli cream sauce, salt and pepper calamari and Kinkawooka mussels – cooked in tomato, onion & garlic sauce. If you are still wanting more, then the main course is next – King George Whiting – cooked in Coopers pale ale beer batter, prime samm lamb steaks and Spanish king prawns – Spencer Gulf wild catch king prawns cooked in tomato & black bean sauce. (L,D)
Overnight Port Lincoln Hotel or similar
An early start this morning, depart for beautiful Coffin Bay. This area is of outstanding beauty, sapphire waters, world famous oysters and is home to a variety of important species of flora and fauna. There are no other comparable systems of bays and inlets in such compact form anywhere on the coast, which is why this area is classified as a maritime wilderness area. This morning’s experience is something that will embed itself firmly into your memory for years to come. Local Nauo Aboriginal Jody Miller, a Wirangu tribe member, is an outstanding individual looking to preserve his traditional stories, values and cultures by sharing the knowledge of his traditions from the soul. Be completely absorbed as you learn about his fascinating Indigenous culture through hands-on activities such as collecting and foraging for bush-tucker, understanding the amazing diversity of the bush medicine to be found, listening to his captivating story-telling and ancient history as you interact to truly form an understanding of the local culture, community and history of this area, well before white man came along. You may even have the opportunity to experience some traditional methods of bush cooking and of course, tasting is a must.
As seafood is a major part of this region, we tempt you with a lunch of fresh seafood platters at Coffin Bay 1802 Oyster Bar & Restaurant (or similar) overlooking the pristine waters and oyster leases that have made the town, and it’s world famous oysters. This afternoon, we excite you with a cruise where you will be joining a local oyster farmer and cruising out to ‘The Brothers’ islands to observe the seabirds, seals and dolphins that call this area home. Whilst cruising, learn about the humble oyster, the process of farming these oysters, shuck your own oysters and of course, oyster tasting – the freshest oysters you have ever tasted. Your expert oyster farmer loves explaining how and what they are doing to keep their industry sustainable for years to come and how they are lessening the impact on the environment. The larger island of ‘The Brothers’ in the Mount Dutton Bay Conservation Park, is of paleontological significance because of the presence of sub-fossil bones of six species, including an extinct kangaroo and a giant flightless bird. Elegant bottle-nosed Dolphins are common within the turquoise Coffin Bay waterways, and common dolphins are frequently seen in offshore waters. Please note the cruise is weather dependent.
This evening, return to your hotel to freshen up, before a five minute stroll to El Giorno’s for a tasting menu. Savour a mixture of local fresh seafood and land products that of course are all locally produced. Start off with a tasting of Hiramusa yellowtail kingfish sashimi, Southern bluefin tuna sashimi and Coffin Bay oysters – natural – Tokyo – pickled ginger, soy sauce, mirin & wasabi. Entrée is followed with Devilled scallops – wrapped in bacon, with steamed rice and chilli cream sauce, salt and pepper calamari and Kinkawooka mussels – cooked in tomato, onion & garlic sauce. If you are still wanting more, then the main course is next – King George Whiting – cooked in Coopers pale ale beer batter, prime samm lamb steaks and Spanish king prawns – Spencer Gulf wild catch king prawns cooked in tomato & black bean sauce. (B,L,D)
Overnight Port Lincoln Hotel or similar
Today is all about wildlife, nature and adventure featuring the amazing coast of the lower Eyre Peninsula. Set off at 9am on an adventure to Lincoln National Park. Experience the diversity of the national park, from the naturally rugged and wild Sleaford Bay and the Southern Ocean to the tranquillity of the Spalding Cove area and other beautiful beaches. Of the 29,000ha National Park, beachcomb along Surfleet Cove and take a 45-minute hike to see spectacular views of Boston Bay, Port Lincoln and the Port Lincoln National Park at the Stamford Hill Lookout. This national park is literally teaming with kangaroos, emus and native, coastal & inland bird species.
Weave your way in your 4WD through the impressive towering sand dunes, a stark contrast to the jagged coastal cliffs you have just left behind. Keep your eyes peeled for emus slinking through the dunes as well as other desert dwellers.
Continue on to the beautiful Mikkira Station, one of Australia’s very best habitats where Koalas can be found in the wild and at incredibly close proximity. Visit the restored original homestead and go for a stroll under the beautiful old Eucalypt trees and come face to face with the cuddly icon of Australia, as they laze in the Manna gums. Due to the gums being stunted, your view to the koala is at eye level and you will need more than two hands to keep count, maybe even four! Wild but placid kangaroos casually hop around in this beautiful historical setting, where in 1842 Scotsman Adam Borthwick and his family made their home as one of the very first settlers of the region. Emus roam around amongst mobs of sheep and there is astounding birdlife here, some of which are rare and native to this area. Bush birds include: Port Lincoln (Australian Ringneck) Parrots, Black-Faced Cuckoo-shrikes, Pallid Cuckoos, Golden Whistlers and an occasional Scarlet Robin.
As the sun settles for the evening, we will relax with a platter of local produce, wine and listen to the sounds of nature as you enjoy listening to Australian Bush Poetry – Listen and be totally entertained with a true Aussie and his repertoire of Australian Bush Poetry. Sit back in amongst the koalas and wildlife, with a local drop and reminisce about our distant past and history. (B,L)
Overnight at Port Lincoln Hotel or similar
Today is yours at leisure until 11am when you will be transferred to the airport for your onward flight. We can also organise (in advance) the below experiences for you if you would like to spend additional time exploring the Eyre Peninsula. (B)
Option 1 – Scenic Flight over the lower Eyre Peninsula (min numbers required to operate)
What a great way to finish off your experience to Port Lincoln, Coffin Bay and the lower Eyre Peninsula. Transfer to the take-off site, where you will meet your pilot and board the Cessna 207, which flies at low altitude. Take off over Boston Island to the north of Port Lincoln and get a rare glimpse from the sky of Port Lincoln City and sights, islands and Boston Harbour, which is 5 times the size of Sydney Harbour. From here, you cruise over the coast of the Lincoln National Park on the lookout for sea and land wildlife. Fly over massive sand-dunes, stunning coastline, majestic cliffs of Whalers Way and the southernmost point of Eyre Peninsula. As you travel on to Coffin Bay, on the right are untouched landscapes, which are only accessible by walking trails, on your left is the great expanse of the Great Australian Bight. Take in the sights of Coffin Bay and get a true idea of the inlets, bays and conservation areas of this small, unique region. Your final journey is through the heartland of our farming community back to Port Lincoln. Return transfer back to Port Lincoln.
Option 2 – Port Lincoln: Swimming with Australian Sealions
Witnessing the rare and endangered Australian Sea Lions in their natural underwater habitat, is one of the most life enhancing experiences. The inquisitive, gentle nature of these stunning sea creatures is unparalleled in the underwater world. Seal Cove, Hopkins Island is where the gorgeous puppies of the sea welcome your arrival, as they bound toward the boat with their unmistakable glee and excitement; performing somersaults and graceful swirls just waiting for you to join in! The gentlest of underwater mammals, sea lions love to play! After watching leaps and twists out of the water and showing off backflips, you will definitely experience the joy they get from swimming with you and you with them. You also cruise around the shores of the Port Lincoln National Park and the cliffs of the Memory Cove wilderness sanctuary. This is untouched coast and is best seen by boat often sighting Bottlenose Dolphins, White Bellied Sea Eagles, Fur Seals and stunning scenery, with outstanding commentary supplied by your skipper. Included in this 4.5-hour excursion, is all swimming equipment with a 7mm wetsuit, mask & snorkel, tea, coffee, muffins, fresh fruit and toasty sandwiches. This experience is a great start to your day. You will arrive back into the Marina at 12.30pm, where your transfer back to the Port Lincoln Hotel awaits. Departures: Not available through the winter months of June, July & August.
Option 3 – Great White Shark Cage Diving (extra nights accommodation required)
Depart early for one of the most extreme and exhilarating ocean interactions with the world’s most feared predator of the sea! Honed by millions of years of evolution, the Great White Shark is one of the most graceful and awe-inspiring fish in the ocean. Absolutely nothing will prepare you for the unique experience on your first encounter with this magnificent specimen in its natural environment.
You are required to board the 20m Calypso Star II by 6.30am from the pontoon next to Port Lincolns’ Marina Hotel, ready for a 7am departure. The home of the Great Whites is out at the Neptune Islands and the 2.5-hour trip is often accompanied by pods of dolphins cruising by with lots of running commentary by the staff on board the shark diving vessel. (During the winter, Southern Right Whales are often seen in the area as well). Once at the Islands, the action begins, as sharks up to 5m emerge from the depths at the attraction of burley and baits.
Each person will experience 45 min cage viewing, face to face, with the amazing Great Whites through crystal clear waters. Cameras are a must have, as the action from the fly bridge and the deck is absolutely fantastic! Your day concludes about 6.30-7pm that evening with incredible memories. The transfer back to your Port Lincoln hotel is included.
Great White Sharks are all year round and sightings can never be guaranteed, as they are wild animals, but it is truly amazing to see the size of these creatures, as there are only a few places in the world to see the great white sharks. Historically February & March, are not a great time to see the Great White Sharks but each season is different.
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**Please note that this tour can be organised on request for private departures.
* Pricing is subject to change at anytime until full payment has been received.
* A minimum of 4 adults is required to guarantee this departure.
A non-refundable deposit of 25% deposit per person is required to secure your place. Final payment is due no later than 60 days prior to departure. Travel insurance is mandatory for travelling with Crooked Compass. For full terms and conditions, please click here.
This category of tours involves light trekking, walking, cycling, rafting or kayaking for a few hours each day with a small amount of inclines and declines. You will require a reasonable level of fitness and good health to participate. It is important to note that due to the nature of some of our trips, they may take place in remote areas (with basic facilities) and can involve long travelling days on various modes of transport.
Suggested preparation : At least 3 months prior to departure, it is recommended that you undertake aerobic exercise (this may include jogging, cycling or fast walking) for 30 minutes, three times a week. It is also advised to walk on variable terrain and in variable weather conditions. For a cycling adventure, road cycling twice a week is recommended and for adventures which involve paddling and kayaking, it is important to gain confidence and rhythm rather than speed prior to departure.
This category of tours involve trekking, kayaking and cycling for period of 6 to 8 hours a day at a fairly consistent pace. Ideal for people looking to slightly increase the heart rate. For our moderately rated tours, you must have a good level of fitness and also be in good health. It is also important to be prepared for variable weather conditions. Altitude may also come into play. This category of tours may involve visiting remote areas where facilities can be quite basic. Accommodation may also involve camping, homestays or basic accommodation where facilities may not be considered of western standards. To enjoy this style of travel, it is suggested for travellers to have a reasonable level of fitness and health, a positive attitude, as well as a fairly active lifestyle. An open mind is also required.
Suggested preparation: At least 3 months prior to departure, it is recommended that you undertake 45mins – 1 hour of aerobic exercise, three to four times a week. Some potential exercises that could be beneficial include hill walking with a backpack on over variable terrain and weather conditions, as well as running and cycling dependent on the activity you plan on undertaking.
This category of tours involves trekking, kayaking, cycling or other adventure activities in remote areas for up to 8 to 10 hours a day. It is important to note that with the remoteness of some regions comes a variety of other challenges such as variable weather conditions, accommodation as well as facilities. You must have an excellent level of fitness and good health to be able to partake in this category of tour. You must have confidence in your own ability and be in good physical condition. Includes extended periods of endurance.
Suggested preparation: At least 3 to 4 months of strenuous exercise, four times a week. When preparing for treks it would be beneficial to participate in hill walks with a weighted day pack (approximately 5-8 kg) once a week for aerobic fitness and strengthening of leg muscles. It is also important to do this on variable terrain to prepare for challenging adventures. When preparing for cycling adventures, regular bike riding (at least 4 to 5 times a week for 1-4 hours is essential). It is also important to cycle on uneven surfaces or even participate in other aerobic exercises such as running or swimming to build up strength and stamina. Altitude may also be a factor in these tours.
This category of tour often involves extreme trekking, cycling or other extreme adventure activities. It is important to expect remote and poorly defined tracks and to be prepared for variable weather conditions for 10 to 12 hours per day (may sometimes be more depending on weather and altitude). These adventures are suitable for travellers who have prior experience in strenuous travel and activities, are extremely fit and have excellent health. It is also important to note that some of the terrain on these adventures will involve trekking in snow, at high attitude levels and may require technical equipment.
Suggested preparation: It is important to note that physical fitness should be an ongoing activity, commencing around 5-6 months prior to departure, or even before if you have no prior fitness. Exercise should focus on building maximum endurance and stamina. Four to five hard sessions of 40-60 mins per week should be completed and can include exercises such as going to the gym, running, swimming or cycling to focus on building aerobic stamina. It could also be beneficial to prepare by hiking on rough terrain, in extreme weather conditions or partake in altitude training.