Things To Do
Learn how to surf and have surfing lessons from Ocean Living Surf School, located at Goolwa Beach, only 20 minutes from Victor Harbor. You can book your lesson now from our Reception.
You can choose from group and private surf lessons; team building; surfing awareness lessons for kids, adults, parties, school groups, women only, corporate and community groups. The lessons can cater for people at all levels of surfing – beginners, intermediate or advanced.
Proprietor Philip Ball and his instructors provide a great learning experience with the latest gear and techniques with all equipment provided (surfboard, wetsuits, sun block). We also incorporate safety and ocean awareness into all lessons, all of which is designed to get you surfing and improving and above all having fun.
Urimbirra Wildlife Experience
The Urimbirra Wildlife Experience gives you the chance to see more than 70 species of Australian fauna in their natural surroundings. The paths through Urimbirra allow you to see the animals at close range and a walk through the 16-hectare site is a photographer’s delight. Freshwater and saltwater crocodiles are on display, as well as venomous snakes, pythons and lizards.
Located just five kilometres from Victor Harbor on the main Adelaide Road, Urimbirra is an Aboriginal word meaning ‘to preserve’ or ‘to take care of’ and there is evidence on the site indicating canoes and shields were made from some of the trees by local Aboriginal groups in the past.
Visitors can interact with a range of animals daily.
Koala shows at 11am, 2pm and 4 pm;
Crocodile feeding at 1.30pm; and
Snake handling displays at 4pm.
Spirit Australia Cruises
Spirit of the Coorong Cruises offer 2 hour, 4 hour, and 6 hour cruises from Goolwa, only 20 minutes from Victor Harbor to the River Murray Mouth and into the Coorong National Park. A long, narrow and shallow lagoon stretching more than 100 kilometres from the River Murray Mouth, the Coorong is separated from the Southern Ocean by a series of sand dunes and supported by fresh water flows from the River Murray and tidal movement from the sea.
One of the most important wetlands in Australia and internationally known for native and migratory birdlife, the Coorong is a place of spectacular white sand dunes, wildlife, unique flora, and aboriginal history …a place of untouched wilderness, peace and tranquillity.
Experience this special place of wetland wilderness, wildlife, spectacular scenery, and Aboriginal and European history on a Spirit of the Coorong Murray Mouth, Adventure or Discovery cruise.
Hiking and Walking Tracks
Victor Harbor boasts many walks and trails bound to bring out the inner wildlife warrior in you. The trails vary in length, degree in difficulty, and the type of landscape you will get close to, so it is important to determine which walking trail suits you best.
Granite Island Kaiki Trail
An initiative of the Ngarrindjeri Community Development Program, the Kaiki Trail is a meeting place of cultural history and natural history. The Ramindjeri people’s name for the landform, ‘Kaiki’ holds great aboriginal significance. On the 2.9km trail you’ll encounter the dreamtime story in which Ngurunderi travels down the River Murray in search of his two wives, throwing his reed spear (his ‘Kaiki’) and creating the landscape that now surrounds Victor Harbor. The granite boulders and crashing waves make for a very special backdrop.
Hindmarsh River Walks
The Hindmarsh River Estuary is of great ecological significance – as well as a place of great natural beauty. It’s home to river red gums and rare swamp paperbark trees as well as tremendous birdlife, including the black chinned honey eater and hooded plover. Enjoy the views and wildlife on five different estuary walks lasting from 20 minutes to three hours on mostly level terrain. All trails commence from the bridge at Hindmarsh River mouth; maps are available from the Visitor Information Centre.
The big one! The Heysen Trail is one of the world’s longest walking trails, stretching some 1,500km from Victor Harbor to the Flinders Ranges. The trail sections between Waitpinga and Victor Harbor are especially scenic, much loved by walkers and photographers, with terrain varying from steep rugged cliff faces to sandy surf beaches. Medium fitness is required and you need to take adequate supplies of water and wear appropriate clothing. The Visitor Information Centre has more Heysen Trail information.
Nangawooka Flora Reserve
Nangawooka is a small 2ha reserve, home to over 1,200 varieties of Australian native plants. Colourful, aromatic and always changing with the seasons, it’s also a haven for birds, including black chinned honey eaters, superb blue wrens and rainbow lorikeets. It’s located on the Adelaide/Victor Harbor Road, opposite Urimbirra. Picnic and gazebo area and toilet available.
Picturesque Hindmarsh Falls is best viewed in winter and spring after heavy rainfall. Located 18km from Victor Harbor, it’s also busy with birdwatchers who come to admire scrub wren, bassian thrush, white browed scrubwren, eastern spinebill, white throated treecreeper and the laughing kookaburra. The turnoff is located 18km from Victor Harbor (on the Myponga Road) and the falls reached after a gentle 500m walk. Picnic area available.
The Big Duck – Boat Tours
The Big Duck Boat Tour is Victor Harbor’s spectacular ocean adventure experience. Explore inaccessible areas of coastline in our 7.3m expedition-style rigid inflatable boat (RIB). See beautiful seabirds in their natural environment. Dolphin watching and seal watching is possible on most tours year round.
Whale watching tours run June through September. Small group size is guaranteed (maximum 10 passengers) and spray jackets and lifejackets are provided.
Seal Island Tour – Duration 30 minutes
This tour offers passengers The Big Duck experience in a compact form. Departing from the Granite Island Causeway, a five minute scenic cruise takes you along the northern side of Granite Island past the Penguin Centre and Horse Tram route and around the breakwater into the open ocean. A further five minutes of exhilarating motoring and you are at Seal Rock, where New Zealand fur seals and Australian sea lions can be seen basking in the sun and often swim to the stationary boat to have a good look at the passengers. Seabirds including petrels, shearwaters and cormorants can also be seen on or around Seal Rock. Common and bottlenose dolphins are also often in the vicinity and sometimes race the boat. After about 15 minutes viewing the wildlife and beautiful scenery at Seal Rock, The Big Duck returns to the Granite Island Causeway landing.
Wildlife and sightseeing tour/ Whale Watching (June-Sept) – Duration 1 hour 15 minutes
For this extended tour, The Big Duck again departs from the Granite Island Causeway and cruises slowly between the mainland and the northern side of Granite Island, affording breathtaking views of both the Victor Harbor shoreline and the island. Once past the breakwater The Big Duck picks up its pace. Seal Rock is the first stop, where New Zealand fur seals and Australian sea lions bask in the sun between fishing forays and swimming out to the boat for a sticky-beak. Then on past the huge granite boulders of Wright Island and the bluff, with Shark Alley in between. Many visitors to Victor Harbor never venture past Petrel Cove on the western side of the bluff, but this is where passengers on The Big Duck are in for a real treat. West Island is a conservation park, complete with a research hut used by the universities and park rangers. From the back of the island another colony of seals and sea lions can often be seen basking on the rocks and swimming in the shallows. Seabirds abound in this remote area and often pods of common and bottlenose dolphins can be spotted playing or feeding. The Big Duck heads further west past the darkly spectacular cliffs of Kings Beach and Waitpinga before turning around and heading back to Granite Island. That’s a lot to see in just over an hour.