Port Lincoln likes to call itself the “Seafood Capital of Australia” and it’s probably not too far wrong in that claim. Here are all the best things to do in Port Lincoln to make your visit perfect.
Located at the foot of the Eyre Peninsula in South Australia, it has access to the pristine Southern Ocean and all the bounty that comes from it.
With all that delicious seafood, some adrenalin-pumping activities and stunning scenery, Port Lincoln makes an ideal location for a few days of exploring and is a South Australia must-see.
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TL;DR? Here's the outline
- About Port Lincoln South Australia
- Getting to Port Lincoln and Eyre Peninsula
- Best Things to Do in Port Lincoln, Australia
- Shark Cage Diving
- Swimming with Sea Lions
- Taste the Local Wine
- Take a Scenic Flight
- Visit Glen Forest Tourist Park
- Hear Fishing Tales with Fred’s Marina Cruise
- Learn at the Axel Stenross Maritime Museum
- Hire an e-bike to Explore Port Lincoln
- Paying Homage to Australia’s Greatest Racehorse
- See Koalas at Mikkira Station
- Taste All the Local Produce
- Explore Port Lincoln National Park
- Paddle Board, Kayak, Surf & More
- Drive the Whaler’s Way
- Watch a Movie at Lincoln Cinema
- Check out Local Artwork at a Gallery
- Try the Local Beverages
- Enjoy Views Over Port Lincoln at Winter Hill Lookout
- Shop Until you Drop in Port Lincoln
- Walk the Parnkalla Walking Trail
- Learn About the Area with a Walking Tour
- Do a Tour at The Fresh Fish Place
- Go Fishing!
- Take a Tour of Port Lincoln
- Hit the Beach!
- Things to do in Nearby Towns
- Where to Stay in Port Lincoln
- Where to Eat in Port Lincoln
About Port Lincoln South Australia
The city of Port Lincoln (commonly misspelt as Port Lincon) is the ninth biggest in South Australia with a population of around 14000 people and is an Eyre Peninsula must see.
It is the hub of much of the fishing industry of the state – perhaps even the country – and many people have made their fortunes here from fishing. As such it has the highest amount of millionaires per capita in Australia.
The Port Lincoln port is the mainstay of industry in the city today, with not only seafood, but grain, mining products and wool also making up a big proportion of the goods shipped from here. It is also becoming a popular cruise ship stop too. It’s a must-do on the Eyre Peninsular Seafood Trail.
The traditional owners of the land Port Lincoln stands on are the Barngarla people who call it Kallinyalla (pronounced Galinyalla).
The first European to land here was Matthew Flinders in 1902, beating out the French explorer Nicolas Baudin but just a few months. Flinders named it Port Lincoln after his home of Lincolnshire in England.
The Port Lincoln weather tends to vary a lot. Like most of South Australia, there are four seasons here. Expect a cold winter ( approximately 15 degrees) with rain and wind and a warm summer (approximately 35 degrees).
Of course, it can vary wildly and still be cool and rainy in summer, or warmer in winter.
The best time to visit Port Lincoln depends on your interests and reasons for coming. Generally, I would suggest spring or autumn as the change of seasons should give you mild weather, it won’t be too cold to swim with the sea lions or sharks, and Mikkira Station has not closed for the hot summer months.
Port Lincoln has featured in some recent TV series, with the first series of Australian Survivor filmed at Whalers Way, a leg of Amazing Race Australia 2021, and the Discovery Channel series Tuna Wranglers and Abalone Wars based here too.
Getting to Port Lincoln and Eyre Peninsula
Port Lincoln is a great place to base yourself while you explore Eyre Peninsula – or at least the lower half. While Port Lincoln is about 280km from Adelaide in a straight line, to get there by road is a 650km drive from Adelaide and it takes around 7 hours if there is very little stopping along the way.
If you are planning to drive all the way in one day, I suggest allowing at least an extra hour or two to give plenty of time for rest stops during the drive.
Otherwise, you could drive from Adelaide to Port Augusta in a day, then from Port Augusta to Port Lincoln the next day, which would give you plenty of time for a relaxed journey and to stop in at all the little coastal towns along the way.
You may have heard there is an Adelaide to Port Lincoln ferry. That’s not quite right, but there is an option to drive to Wallaroo and catch the Spencer Gulf Searoad car ferry across to Lucky Bay.
This will cut a lot of kilometres of driving from your trip to visit Eyre Peninsula, but it will still take almost the same amount of time as the crossing takes 2.5 hours and you will need to be at the ferry terminal earlier to check-in.
If you are coming from the west, the drive from Streaky Bay to Port Lincoln is just under 300km and will take you around three hours without any stops.
Driving is the best way to get to Port Lincoln because it also gives you access to a car during your visit. This will make it much easier to get around and see the things you want to see.
It is possible to rent a car in Port Lincoln if you arrive by one of the other options below. Make sure you consider the things you want to do before renting a car because some of the areas require a 4WD or AWD car for access.
Want ideas for things to do between Adelaide and Port Lincoln? These posts will give you some suggestions
19 Best Things to Do in Whyalla
15 Things to Do in Port Augusta: More than Just a Fuel Stop
Tumby Bay Street Art
Getting to Port Lincoln by Air
Port Lincoln does have an airport and there are regular flights to Port Lincoln from Adelaide run by both Rex and Qantaslink. With so much uncertainty with air travel at the moment, I suggest checking timetables carefully as they seem to regularly change.
Port Lincoln airport is located just to the north of Port Lincoln towards Tumby Bay.
Getting to Port Lincoln by Bus
Buses run from Adelaide to Port Lincoln on a regular basis. Before the COVID restrictions, there was a bus every day, but currently, the timetable has been restricted to three times a week in each direction.
Check out the Stateliner website for the most current timetables and prices as they are likely to keep changing.
Best Things to Do in Port Lincoln, Australia
When looking for things to do Port Lincoln and its surroundings have plenty of options and this is a popular holiday location.
It is one of the premier tourist destinations in South Australia and is particularly popular with international tourists who come to sample the world-class seafood. It is becoming a regular port for cruise ships visiting South Australia during the summer season too.
I spent six nights in the town recently and still didn’t get to everything I would have liked to do. The highlights are the national parks, the food and wine and the other nature adventures. As an added bonus, there are plenty of free things to do in Port Lincoln if you are on a budget too.
Is Port Lincoln worth visiting? It is, just for the incredible nature alone. But you will also find great Port Lincoln experiences, plenty of local history, and good food and wine here too.
While there may not be a lot of things to do in Port Lincoln at night, that means it’s the perfect opportunity to get outside and enjoy the clear skies with some star gazing. Even better if you get get outside the city centre to do it.
If you can drag yourself away, it’s also the perfect stopover point for your Eyre Peninsula road trip. The Port Lincoln tourist information office can provide you with more information to continue your trip.
Here is what to do in Port Lincoln during your visit.
Shark Cage Diving
Port Lincoln is the only place in Australia to cage dive with great white sharks. It is the most popular of the Port Lincoln attractions, tops the list of Port Lincoln adventure activities, and is arguably one of the best things to do on the Eyre Peninsula and in all of South Australia.
It is often the number one reason for taking a Port Lincoln holiday.
Full-day tours are run out of Port Lincoln by Calypso Star Charters. When I went and did the shark cage tour, I went with another company which has since been bought out.
It’s a huge day, as it’s three hours each way to get to the Neptune Islands, which is where the great white sharks hang out.
It’s an incredible experience though to see one of the sharks in the water. While the trip was slightly different, the basic experience is similar to my trip, which you can read about here.
There are also longer shark cage diving tours available through Rodney Fox shark expeditions that spend more time in the Neptune Island area.
The tours tend to be longer in winter to allow for bad weather and incorporate some other things to do in the area such as diving with the giant cuttlefish.
Swimming with Sea Lions
Swimming with Australia Sea Lions is one of the top Port Lincoln tourist attractions. While I haven’t done this one myself – I had to choose sharks or sea lions – these tours are offered by the same companies that offer shark cage diving.
The half-day tours go out to Seal Cove where you get to spend time swimming with the playful “puppies of the sea”. I will absolutely be trying this one myself when I come back to Port Lincoln again.
You can book your own swim with the sea lions with Calypso Star Charters.
Taste the Local Wine
While Port Lincoln is not listed as one of the 18 wine regions in South Australia, just in the last few years a few vineyards have started to pop up. The are currently four wineries producing their own wines.
Boston Bay Wines have vineyards just north of Port Lincoln and claim to be the closest vineyards to the sea in the world. I’m not sure how true this is, but there really is only a highway between their vines and the beach.
They run their own cellar door and tastings are available every day. There is a restaurant here that provides great views over the vines and Boston Bay while enjoying lunch with your wine.
Lincoln Estate Wines are produced by the same family that runs Glen Forest Tourist Park (see below). Tasting can be done at their cellar door/ticket office/gift shop.
Peter Teakle Wines boasts a stunning cellar door where visitors can taste some of the award-winning wines, including Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Chardonnay.
Peter Teakle Wines also has an on-site restaurant, The Line & Label, which offers seasonal food that pairs perfectly with their wines. The restaurant’s menu includes fresh seafood, locally sourced produce, and decadent desserts.
The Line & Label is open for lunch on Saturday and Sunday and dinner from Thursday to Sunday, allowing visitors to enjoy a delightful dining experience in a beautiful setting.
Gardner’s Vineyard is located just a little further north of Port Lincoln towards Tumby Bay. It’s family-run and only grows a small number of grapes each year. There is a range of wines available, like Riesling, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz.
We were surprised to see that some of the wines for tasting were 8-10 years old and selling and reasonable prices, and this is a particular strategy that appears to be working for them.
Older stocks were built up between when they started producing wines in 2009 and when they opened the cellar door in 2021.
The cellar door is open for tastings from 10 am – 5 pm every day.
We found all the wines to be quite good and took a few bottles home from each winery.
Take a Scenic Flight
See Port Lincoln and the surrounding dramatic coastline from the air with a scenic flight from Lincoln Air Charter. You can choose one of their standard local scenic routes, or they can put together a unique flight just for you.
There are also packages available to allow you to combine a flight with a Coffin Bay oyster farm tour, a flight over Lake Gairdner with lunch in Wudinna, or even an overnight stay on Flinders Island. See more details and their contact information on the website here.
Visit Glen Forest Tourist Park
Glen-Forest Tourist Park is one of the top things to do in Port Lincoln with kids. They are home to all sorts of different animals, mostly typical farm animals (and a few not so typical) and Australian natives.
Pick up a bag of feed and you will suddenly become best friends will all the animals. Kids will absolutely love it, and adults will likely have a good time too. We couldn’t help but turn to mush when holding baby rabbits not much bigger than mice.
The animals aren’t the only attraction at Glen Forest Tourist Park though. There is also a huge wooden maze to work out, a putt-putt golf course and Segway tours.
There are BBQ facilities so bring along lunch too. And for the adults, while you are there, have a taste of some of the wine made on the farm too.
Hear Fishing Tales with Fred’s Marina Cruise
This 90-minute cruise around the marina in Port Lincoln is run by a local who has watched the fishing industry in the city evolve over the last 40 years.
Now he will show you around in an eco-friendly electric boat while regaling you with stories of hardship, misfortune and some staggering success!
The tour runs daily at 2 pm from the pontoon just outside the Marina Hotel. Book your tickets at the Port Lincoln Visitor Information Centre.
Learn at the Axel Stenross Maritime Museum
There are a few museums in Port Lincoln that will give you a great overview of the history of the area. Here are my best suggestions:
- Axel Stenross Maritime Museum
- Port Lincoln Railway Museum
- Mill Cottage Museum
- Port Lincoln RSL Museum
You could also check out the Koppio Smithy Museum in the tiny town of Koppio, about 40km north of Port Lincoln or the Mt Dutton Bay Woolshed Museum & Cafe near Coffin Bay.
Hire an e-bike to Explore Port Lincoln
I’m a recent convert to how great it is to explore by e-bike. Normal bikes have always been a bit of a chore, but an e-bike really does make it easier to explore further than you can on foot in the same amount of time.
In Port Lincoln you can hire electric mountain bikes, which are great for seeing all the attractions in Port Lincoln or venturing further afield in the Lincoln and Coffin Bay national parks
You can arrange your e-bike hire through Australian Coastal Safaris here.
If you would like to take a guided tour on your e-bike, Australian Coastal Safaris can do that for you too.
Paying Homage to Australia’s Greatest Racehorse
Right on the foreshore of Port Lincoln is a statue of a horse. This is Makybe Diva. Depending on who you ask, she would rank highly as one of the best racehorses in Australian history.
She was the winner of Australia’s premier race, the Melbourne Cup, for three consecutive years and still holds the record for the highest amount of prizemoney ever won by a single horse.
Maybe Diva is commemorated here because her owner was local Port Lincoln tuna baron Tony Santic. She became a much-loved favourite “daughter” of the town in her heyday. This is one of those things to see in Port Lincoln you just have to tick off the list!
As a tip – if you want a great photo of Makybe Diva, don’t visit in the morning, but rather in the afternoon when the sun is not behind her.
See Koalas at Mikkira Station
Mikkira Station was the most unexpected of the Port Lincoln things to do. I had no idea there were koalas in the wild around Port Lincoln, and when I heard about it I wasn’t sure what to expect because I couldn’t find a lot of information.
I couldn’t even find where Mikkira Station was on Google Maps!
I asked about it at the Visitor Information Centre and learned that this is a privately owned property that requires a permit to access it. We arranged that and were soon on our way, given directions by the lovely staff.
Once at the property, there’s not a lot here – but that is all part of the charm. It really is just a property, not (yet) a fully-fledged commercial tourist attraction!
Follow the road until you can’t go any further and park near the toilet block. There is a sign pointing out the historical walk, but no mention anywhere about the koalas – which is of course why we came.
Mikkira Station is home to a wild colony of koalas living among the small section of Manna Gums. As we took the short walk to the old homestead, all around us were koalas just hanging out in the trees.
We were the only people there so had all the time and space in the world to ooh and ahh over these cute creatures.
We spent about an hour with the koalas, then also did the walk to see the giant yuccas (look out for the sign on the way in). While we weren’t staying the night, Mikkira Station would be an amazing place to camp. There are onsite “glamper campers” available if you do not have your own caravan, RV or tent.
There is a toilet/shower block available, and the cost to camp is the same as a day pass. It’s quiet and a lovely area. Mikkira Station really is one of the best things to do around Port Lincoln.
Mikkira Station is available for visits anytime during the winter months, but it does close during the summer months due the the bushfire risk. That doesn’t mean you can’t come here though, you will just need to come on an organised tour. This tour from Untamed Escapes will take you there.
Taste All the Local Produce
Port Lincoln seems to have become a hub for small businesses to produce some fantastic products from the local raw ingredients. Here are just a few to try while you are in town. Why not take these home as a souvenir from your trip or as gifts to family members?
- Beer Garden Brewing – craft beers from the grains grown on the Eyre Peninsula
- Boston Bean – boutique coffee house roasting and grinding their own beans. I also had a delicious chai here too. The beans can be found in many locations, but head to their cafe to try them brewed for you too.
- Bush Flower Teas – herbal teas blended from organic products
- Pope’s Honey – A few different varieties of local honey. They also run tours of their factory to learn about the honey-making process.
- Boston Bay Smallgoods – pork cuts and smallgoods from a local free-range heritage breed pig farm
- The Fresh Fish Place – you may not be able to take fresh fish home, but there is a wide range of pickled and smoked options too
If you can’t get to the individual locations, The Fresh Fish Places sells a wide range of local products in their shop. You can also find local products at the Port Lincoln Visitor Centre.
Explore Port Lincoln National Park
Located south of Port Lincoln on the Jussieu Peninsula, Lincoln National Park (sometimes mistakenly called the Port Lincoln National Park) is a little bit different to Coffin Bay National Park and Whalers Way.
While it still has a rugged stretch of coastline, the other side of the peninsula faces the calmer waters of Boston Bay. This makes it an ideal location for recreational activities such as fishing and hiking. There are some great little beaches where swimming is possible too.
Adjacent to the rugged coastline are some impressive sand dunes, perfect for some sandboarding. There are a few options for hiring your own sandboard in Port Lincoln, including X-Treme Kites & Paddle (see below).
You can also book in a stunning Sand Dune Sunset Tour to explore the dunes with a guide.
Lincoln National Park is also the location of the pristine Memory Cove, but you will need to see the people at the Port Lincoln Visitor Information Centre before entering this part of the park. Entry is restricted to only 15 vehicles a day to help preserve the area.
It is home to the endangered White-Bellied Sea Eagle, the second-largest bird of prey in Australia. There are only 240 pairs remaining and the disruption of their habitat by humans is their biggest threat. Memory Cove is also only accessible by 4WD.
There are quite a few locations throughout Lincoln National Park where camping, caravans and RVs are allowed, including a few spots at Memory Cove. There are even some glamping tents available to stay in at September Beach. This would be a lovely place to spend a few days.
Part of the southern coast of Lincoln National Park overlooks Sleaford Bay. Over recent years, this has become the winter home of a small group of Southern Right Whales.
While not actually in Lincoln National Park, we were able to see the whales at the lookout at the end of Sleaford Bay Road, but they could be anywhere in the bay.
Are you visiting Port Lincoln with a pet but would like to go to Lincoln National Park? Find a local doggy daycare or pet sitter through Mad Paws.
Paddle Board, Kayak, Surf & More
If the weather is nice in Port Lincoln, what could be better than a day out on the pristine waters of Boston Bay? No need to bring your own paddle board, kayak, sandboard or even surfboard, you can hire them at Xtreme Kites & Paddle. They don’t just hire you the equipment though, they can also give you lessons too.
If getting out on the water is not your thing, or you have some kids along that need some entertaining, Xtreme Kites & Paddle also have some cool activities to share. Perhaps you would like to try sand boarding or bubble soccer or sumo wrestling! Take a look at the website for all the options.
Drive the Whaler’s Way
The Whaler’s Way is a must-see Port Lincoln attraction! This is a 14km scenic drive right on the bottom tip of the Eyre Peninsula. It is predominantly viewing the stunning limestone cliffs and bays of the coastline.
While it’s a driving route, almost every stop requires a walk to see the views. The distances of the walks range from just a few metres to up to 1km.
All I can say is that this part of the coast is just awesome! No need to drive the better-known Great Ocean Road in Victoria, this is easily as good. I could not help but be awed by the roaring and immense power of the Southern Ocean.
The waves were huge, but when the sun came out the colours in the water were stunning. Deep blues out in the depths and bright blues in the shallows, all mixed with the milky white of the waves as they hit the cliffs. Just awesome!
While we didn’t see any, it is possible to see fur seals and whales in this area.
The Whaler’s Way is on private property and to enter visitors need to buy a permit at the Port Lincoln Tourism Information Centre. They will give you a key to the gate.
It’s all dirt roads and I recommend an AWD/4WD – although we went with a 2WD so it is possible. I would suggest allowing a whole day for your visit so you can enjoy all the walks.
Watch a Movie at Lincoln Cinema
The Lincoln Cinema is a historic cinema that opened in 1929. It has three screens and shows new releases and classic films. Remember what cinema-going was like in the yesteryears during your visit by spending an evening watching a movie.
Great for kids too, with plenty of children’s movies being shown, especially in the school holidays. This is one of the best things to do in Port Lincoln in winter if the weather turns bad.
Check out Local Artwork at a Gallery
Here’s what to do in Port Lincoln on a rainy day! As you explore Port Lincoln, drop into one of the art galleries and take a look at the artwork produced by some of the local artists. Here are some of the galleries I suggest you visit
- Kuju Aboriginal Arts
- Nautilus Art Centre
- Quirky Owl Studio and Gallery
While not exactly a gallery, make sure you also stop past the Rhapsody In Wood store. They make incredible handcrafted wooden maps out of sustainable timbers that are just stunning.
They also make a few other things, but it’s their maps that are really great.
Feel free to make a purchase, but if the maps are beyond your budget, they are happy to have people visit just to have a look.
Try the Local Beverages
Craft breweries and distilleries are popping up everywhere, and Port Lincoln is no exception to that with more appearing all the time. Try local beverages at these places next time you are in town, check their socials to see what is on
Enjoy Views Over Port Lincoln at Winter Hill Lookout
After all these Port Lincoln activities, take a moment to stop and enjoy the scenery! We all love a good view, and the one from Winter’s Hill Lookout over is great. It’s one of the things to do in Port Lincoln for free.
As you drive up there are views inland, and then once at the top, all of Port Lincoln and Boston Bay opens up before you.
A second place that offers good views over Boston Bay is the Old Mill Lookout. The Old Mill is one of the interesting sights in itself as it is the oldest surviving building in Port Lincoln.
Shop Until you Drop in Port Lincoln
I’m not a shopper, but even I was drawn to some of the interesting and unique stores that can be found along the main shopping streets of Port Lincoln town centre. Think interesting boutiques, funky homewares, and my favourite, a huge secondhand book store (The Book Bazaar).
You can book in for a relaxing spa treatment or pick up a special piece of jewellery at the Port Lincoln shops to remember your visit. Shopping in Port Lincoln is a step up from many other rural cities.
Walk the Parnkalla Walking Trail
There are two significant walking trails that pass through Port Lincoln, but both take the same path. The Investigator Trail is a long-distance walk of around 115km, starting just north of Port Lincoln and then making its way down to loop around Lincoln National Park.
The first 26km is also called the Parnkalla Walking Trail which follows the beachfront through Port Lincoln.
Of course, you do not have to do the whole of these trails. It’s easy to walk a section of each as we did. Firstly we walked from The Port Lincoln Hotel right around to the grain silos along the beachfront.
This section has information regarding the boats of the area, and you can see the Makybe Diva and Tuna Poler statues right in the middle of town.
In Lincoln National Park we walked the Surfleet Loop, the first section of which is part of the Investigator Trail running right along the beach. In fact, some of the time the path is actually on the sand.
There are many other shorter walking trails in Lincoln National Park that include parts of the Investigator Trail. Even though they can be through some rugged countryside, they are well-marked.
Learn About the Area with a Walking Tour
Organised at a time to suit you, book a walking tour in either Port Lincoln or Coffin Bay. Let them know your interests and a 1-hour walking tour with a local will be chosen just for you.
It could be along the foreshore in Port Lincoln where you will learn about the town and history, or it could be to a pristine natural location where you will enjoy breathtaking views and wildlife.
Tours can only be arranged by phone, call 1300 788 378
Do a Tour at The Fresh Fish Place
Since Port Lincoln is known as the Seafood Capital of Australia, while here you want to taste at least some of it. Now while I honestly think you would be hard-pressed to find a bad seafood meal anywhere in Port Lincoln, one of the best places to eat is at The Fresh Fish Place.
They have all sorts of seafood that have just come out of the sea in the last day, so extremely fresh. We got a Fisherman’s Basket so we could try a selection, and I might be going out on a limb here, but it would possibly be the best fish’n’chips I’ve ever had.
Not only is The Fresh Fish Place a restaurant, but it’s also a factory that processes seafood to sell on the wholesale market to other parts of the country. If you are keen to learn more about the process, they offer tours each weekday at 11 am, which include a tasting of some of the produce.
Unfortunately, the tours were not running during our visit, but this sounds like a great way to learn about the fishing industry in Port Lincoln. To book, contact the Port Lincoln Visitor Information Centre.
I can’t believe I’ve gotten this far down my list and have not yet mentioned what would probably be obvious for the Seafood Capital of Australia – how about a spot of fishing?
There are multiple opportunities to try all sorts of fishing, from throwing in a line at the Port Lincoln jetty, finding a nearby beach to fish from, renting a boat for a day, or going out on a fishing charter to catch big fish. Whichever you choose, you’ll be sure to bring home enough for dinner.
Take a Tour of Port Lincoln
Do you only have one day or don’t have your own transport and are trying to work out what to do at Port Lincoln? There is still a way to visit some of the attractions and get a good overview of the city by taking one of the Port Lincoln day tours.
We were surprised to come across the bus from Tasting Eyre all the way out on Whalers Way. Further investigation shows their tours not only show you the dramatic coastal scenery but also go to Lincoln National Park and Mikkira Station.
There is also morning tea at the Marina, lunch at The Fresh Fish Place and wine tasting at Boston Bay Wines. Sounds like a good day to me!
If perhaps you prefer an adventure tour, this 4WD tour may suit you better. You will get off the beaten path a little more while exploring the Lincoln National Park, including some driving in the sand dunes
Hit the Beach!
There are dozens of beautiful beaches around the area that are great to visit all year round. Some of the most popular (and most beautiful) are Memory Cove in Lincoln National Park, Fishery Bay, Almonta Beach in Coffin Bay National Park and Sleaford Beach.
In winter enjoy the stunning scenery and the windswept look of long white beaches. Admire the power of mother nature and revel in the remoteness and isolation of being all alone here.
In summer these beaches are ideal for all your water sports, but do take care as they are not patrolled and are not in the town.
Things to do in Nearby Towns
There are a few small towns around Port Lincoln that a worthy of a visit while you are in the area. Here I will go through a few of the main ones and their main attractions.
Things to do in Coffin Bay
While in Port Lincoln it’s almost essential that you drive the 44km from Port Lincoln to Coffin Bay on the western side of Eyre Peninsula.
Coffin Bay is best known for its world-class oysters, and the best thing to do in town is to take a tour with one of the oyster farm operators to learn about the farming process and taste a fresh oyster right out of the bay.
After getting a taste of the oysters, head to 1802 Oyster Bar for lunch. This restaurant specialises in local seafood and has some delicious options on the menu. Oysters themselves are served seven different ways – we loved the Thai and the Southern Fried versions.
To wear off all that food, make your way into the Coffin Bay National Park to admire even more of the stunning coastal scenery. Drive out to the Golden Island Lookout and the beautiful Almonta Beach.
Take a walk along some of the walking paths, or perhaps throw in a line and try to catch some more seafood for dinner.
Now, this is a more offbeat activity, but when I asked in the Port Lincoln Visitor Information Centre about quirky, new or unusual things to do in the area this is what was suggested! Just outside of Coffin Bay is Minniribbi Farm.
Go there to check out their antique store or eat at their cafe – all while viewing the free-range Berkshire pigs that are raised on the farm. They also have a wide range of pork products for sale. Unfortunately, I was not able to check it out myself, but it’s on the list for my next trip.
One of the more romantic things to do in Port Lincoln actually happens right here in Coffin Bay – you can take a sunset sailing tour with Sunset Charters. They also offer a Swimming with Dolphin cruise and a Taste & Explore cruise
Things to do in Tumby Bay
Another one of the things to do near Port Lincoln is a day trip to Tumby Bay. Tumby Bay is nestled on a picturesque bay, surrounded by pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and natural landscapes around 50km north of Port Lincoln along Lincoln Highway.
It is known for its relaxed and laid-back atmosphere, making it a popular destination for those seeking a peaceful getaway. Visitors can enjoy a range of outdoor activities, including fishing, swimming, snorkelling, and boating.
The town also has a selection of cafes, restaurants, and shops, offering visitors a taste of local cuisine and a chance to shop for unique souvenirs. I recommend eating at Bluewater Cafe which serves Greek-inspired food right on the foreshore.
Tumby Bay is also home to a range of festivals and events throughout the year, including the popular Colour Tumby Festival in March each year.
Known for its silo art, the festival is extending that by promoting new street art with international and local artists each year. Take a walk around the streets and find some of the other fantastic murals that brighten up the dull walls.
There are a couple of museums here to explore, the Tumby Bay National Trust Museum, and the Excell Blacksmith & Engineering Museum. Check in town for current opening hours.
If you are a scuba diver (or even a snorkeller) then Tumby Bay is the perfect place to try to spot the leafy sea dragon. They are known to live under and around the jetty. See the sign at the start of the jetty for more information.
And of course, Tumby Bay has a fantastic swimming beach and a great jetty for fishing, so relax in town, throw out a line and catch your own dinner.
(Note: The Tumby Bay jetty was damaged in storms in 2022. It is yet to be reopened)
Where to Stay in Port Lincoln
If you are visiting just to go Shark Cage Diving or you are looking for budget accommodation in Port Lincoln, we stayed at The Shark Apartments. They are a small group of three apartments right on the marina.
The rooms are basic, but relatively new and very comfortable. They have a small kitchenette with a microwave, fridge and stovetop to allow you to prepare meals. There’s a big screen TV and a clean and tidy bathroom. The heating was great, and the wifi worked perfectly.
We were warned in advance that because the apartments were in an industrial area, there may be some early morning noise as the fishing trawlers left. There was a little noise, but mostly it was vehicles rather than any banging or yelling, and it didn’t bother us.
I have no trouble recommending them for your Port Lincoln accommodation.
Click here to see prices and availability for The Shark Apartments 1
Click here to see prices and availability for The Shark Apartments 2
Click here to see prices and availability for The Shark Apartments 3
While it was not an issue for us because we were doing the shark cage diving, others might see the location of the Shark Apartments as a downside because they are away from the centre of town out at the marina.
If you prefer to stay closer to the centre of town, The Port Lincoln Hotel is very popular and the best place to stay. For a budget Port Lincoln option, take a look at the Port Lincoln YHA (yes they have private rooms) or for mid-range, try the Hilton Motel.
Where to Eat in Port Lincoln
Almost every local we met gave us recommendations on the best place to eat in Port Lincoln. Here are the most popular Port Lincoln restaurants
- Port Lincoln Hotel (two meals area, one casual, one more upmarket)
- Pizzeria Trieste (pizza)
- Pier Hotel (pub meal)
- Marina Hotel (seafood)
- Del Giornos (Italian/General cafe)
- The Fresh Fish Place (seafood)
- The Line and Label (fine dining)
- L’Anse (French-inspired cafe)
- Fumo 28 (Oyster Bar & Seafood)
Visiting more great South Australian locations? These posts might help
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