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The 10 Best Hikes In Adelaide

20 April, 2022by Bounce

Welcome to beautiful Adelaide, a small but quickly growing city in South Australia that is sure to capture your hearts as soon as you step off of the airplane. It is home to yearly festivals and events, wonderful small bars, great wine and an impressive music and arts scene. If you are visiting Adelaide you will have lots to do, whether you spend your time visiting all of the best museums and art galleries, going sightseeing at all of the top landmarks, or just spending your days at the beach.

The city's surrounding landscape is beautiful and all nature lovers can appreciate it. There are lots of hiking and walking trails found not too far away from the city center, so if you have some free time you can take a day trip out to the Adelaide Hills. Remember you can leave your suitcases or extra gear at a baggage locker in Adelaide so you aren't carrying too much on your hikes!

Our Top Hiking Trail Picks in Adelaide

Alligator Gorge Ring Route

You will find Mount Remarkable National Park a couple of hours away from Adelaide but if you make the drive you will be rewarded with some fantastic hiking trails. This path in particular will bring you around the perimeter of Alligator Gorge and the Narrows, which is a several hundred meters long gorge.

If you visit in the spring you will get to see some gorgeous wildflowers in bloom as well as the water flowing over the terraces in the creek. In total, the drive to get here will take you just under 4 hours, but if you leave in the morning and bring a picnic it can be a nice place to sit for lunch.

Yurebilla Trail

The Yurebilla Trail is found in the Mount Lofty Ranges and is huge at 54 kilometers long. If you want to hike the whole thing it will take about three days so be prepared with a sleeping bag, tent, food and lots of water. The path is narrow in some places but much wider in others and also passes through several small towns, so if you don't want to camp you can probably grab a room in a hotel or inn while you are there.

Some of the places you will get to visit include Norton Summit, Summertown and Crafers, as well as popular attractions including the Mount Lofty Botanic Gardens and Cleland Conservation Park. It is a great way to do some sightseeing while being active in Adelaide. The start of the trail is only a 20 minute drive away from the city center.

Marion Coastal Walk and Hallett Cove

The Gulf St Vincent is a beautiful part of Adelaide that has some popular trails that are perfect for day walks. The terrain can be challenging as you will be climbing up and down on the gullies and coves but if you stick it out, you can see some spectacular views from on top of the cliffs.

Some of the seaside vistas and rock formations date back at least 600 million years, so any geology enthusiasts can appreciate the landscape while exploring the walking trail. If you hop in a car and head for the coast you should be able to reach the area in under half an hour.

Onkaparinga River Hike

One of the best hiking trails in Adelaide is at the Onkaparinga River National Park. There are a couple of different trails that you can follow and they vary in difficulty so even those who aren't as experienced can give it a shot. Take your pick from treks on a clifftop to walks on the bottom of rocky pools, but if you had to choose one we recommend the Gorge Hike.

It is not one of the easiest options but it is a beautiful path, and you can stop to admire the landscape once you reach the Sundews Lookout. There are a few steep sections as you go from the top of the gorge to the stream at the bottom and back up, so proper footwear is a must. The park is about a 45 minute drive away by car.

Waterfall Gully to Mount Lofty Summit

This is by far one of the most popular walking trails in Adelaide. Although the hike is short it has several steep sections and can be a bit challenging. It brings you through beautiful areas and there are great views of the city once you reach the peak of Mount Lofty. The trail starts at the parking lot by Waterfall Gully road and is about 3.8 kilometers long.

On your walk, the path will bring you through the Cleland Conservation Park and past all of its most scenic places. Pristine waterfalls, deep gorges, and lush gullies are some of the places that you will pass by, and chances are you will see some wildlife and flora too. The mountain summit reaches 710 meters above sea level. The trek is located on the edge of the city and can be reached in 20 minutes by car.

Heysen Trail

The Heysen Trail is immense at 1,200 kilometers going all the way from Cape Jervis to the Flinders Ranges. You can split up the hike into small sections or tackle the whole thing if you are an avid hiker, although it will take you a while! The trail goes through most of Adelaide's surrounding areas including Mylor, Mount George, Norton Summit, Piccadilly, Morialta Conservation Park, Montacute park, Mount Crawford Forest Reserve and even more.

You will pass by areas by the coast, pine forests, vineyards, native bushland, towns, gorges and farmlands. Keep in mind that parts of the trail are closed between November and March since it is fire danger season. To get to the Heysen Trail you will need to drive for about an hour.

Coastal Park Trail

If you are more of a beach person then you will be happy to learn that Adelaide has some beautiful beaches with some great walking and running trails. There are about 70 kilometers of paths for you to discover so you can spend hours just strolling around the area and enjoying the fresh air.

The area spans from Sellicks Beach to North Haven and there are some nice beachside towns in between. If you get tired or hungry you can stop somewhere to relax or eat, then go back to the sandy shores for more exploring. Since the beaches are flat it can be a great spot for casual walkers, and it is only half an hour away from Adelaide.

Three Falls Grand Hike

Head to the Morialta Conservation Park to reach this popular walk. The whole nature reserve is filled with bushlands, waterfalls, gorges and different ecosystems that serve as homes for several species of wildlife. A common favorite trail to follow is the Three Falls Grand Hike.

It is a round-trip, meaning that you can keep following it and will eventually end up back where you began, although it is 7.3 kilometers long so be ready to hike for a couple of hours. It is called the Three Falls hike because it passes by the first falls as well as the second falls and third falls. The whole path follows the gorge and offers some amazing scenic views over the cliff. Drive for about half an hour from Adelaide to reach the trailhead.

Yellowtail Loop

Just outside of the Adelaide CBD is the Anstey Hill Recreation Park which is a popular area for outdoor enthusiasts to get active, and you will see lots of people walking here. There is also lots of wildlife so be mindful and don't stray too far off of the beaten track. If you want to bring your four-legged friend on the adventure you can, since the park is dog friendly, but keep them on a leash.

There is quite a lot to see in the Anstey Hill Recreation Park, such as the remains of the Newman's Nursery. Some parts of the park get steep but if you make your way up you can see some spectacular views of the Adelaide plains below. If you have ever wanted to go mountain biking you can try one of the eight trails here. The drive here is about 45 minutes from Adelaide city.

Aldgate Valley Nature Walk

The Aldgate Valley Nature Walk will bring you through a gorgeous part of the Adelaide region in the countryside and nature reserves. The walking trail reaches from Mylor to Aldgate and is a versatile walk since the terrain is not too challenging but it is a long hike.

On your journey, you will get to enjoy nature and see some incredible wildlife native to Australia including possums, kangaroos, echidnas, koalas, snakes, water rats, lizards and even the southern brown bandicoot. It is one of the city's popular parks and can be reached in half an hour by car.

Easy Hikes in Adelaide

Aldgate Valley Nature Walk

Although it will take a while to complete the whole trail, the Aldgate Valley Nature Walk is not too challenging and is a nice option for all hikers. Families will also love it here, since children usually like to see the wild animals.

Coastal Park Trail

Head to the Coastal Park Trail for an easy walk in Adelaide. The landscape is flat and won't make you work too hard, so beginners or people who just want to relax can start here. You won't be able to walk the whole 70 kilometers but you can choose a couple small trails to follow.

Heysen Trail

The Heysen Trail is huge and can take up to two months to hike the whole thing so don't expect the complete the hike unless you are experienced and dedicated. However, some parts of it have wide paths and are easy to navigate so if you choose a small section you can find a nice easy walking trail.

Intermediate Hikes in Adelaide

Marion Coastal Walk and Hallett Cove

This area is perfect for those who have tried hiking before and want to take it to the next level. It won't be too difficult but is still a challenge if you aren't experienced, especially since you will be climbing and descending a lot.

Waterfall Gully to Mount Lofty Summit

This is one of Adelaide's most popular hikes and most people are able to hike it, even if you aren't too experienced. You will get to experience different ecosystems and can see Adelaide in all of its wonder, which makes it worth the little extra challenge.

Three Falls Grand Hike

This intermediate hike is not easy but it is not too difficult either which makes it a feasible option for most people who want to hike in Adelaide. The trek is long, however, so you should make sure that you are prepared with the proper equipment.

Difficult Hikes in Adelaide

Yurebilla Trail

The Yurabilla Trail is rated as difficult because it takes so long but if you have the right equipment and some experience you will be fine. However, we still don't recommend it for beginners and you should only try it if you have done overnight hikes before or are with someone who is experienced.

Yellowtail Loop

Because of the elevation gain on this trail, the Yellowtail Loop is recommended for advanced hikers. Remember that if you ever get too tired you can sit and take a break, just make sure that you bring water and some snacks in your backpack.

Onkaparinga River Hike

This is a trail that is not recommended for the faint hearted, especially if you choose the Gorge Hike. However, it is worth the extra challenge since you will get to see some scenic views of the landscape.

Enjoying Outdoor Activities in Adelaide

You have so many trails to choose from when you want to go hiking in Adelaide, and each one is beautiful. Whether you have hiked lots in the past or are just starting to enjoy it, you won't have any trouble finding some parks and greenspaces within driving or walking distance from the center of the city. You should take advantage of your time in this gorgeous town to appreciate the nature and scenery of South Australia and get to know the local landscapes and wildlife.

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