Starting from the Gate 12 car park on River Road, Noarlunga Downs, this walk explores the Onkaparinga River Estuary via the Noarlunga Downs Wetland Trail. This trail showcases a significant environmental restoration project that involved planting thousands of native seedlings from locally-sourced species, transforming the area from a sludge lagoon into a thriving wetland sanctuary for native plants, animals and birds. The site consists of a series of interconnected ponds that treat stormwater before it enters the Onkaparinga River. Along the trail, walkers can learn about the significance of the estuary to its traditional owners via the interpretive signs that feature artwork by contemporary Aboriginal artist Paul Herzich. This walk consists of flat, compacted gravel paths and boardwalks, suitable for walkers and cyclists of all fitness levels, as well as prams and wheelchairs. The trail is accessible either from the main car park, which has picnic facilities, barbecues and toilets, or from the car park at the western end of the boardwalk, which shortens the walk. Let us begin by acknowledging the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we travel today, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present.
Before you start any bushwalk ensure you;
• Tell someone you trust where you are going and what to do if you are overdue
• Have adequate equipment, supplies, skills & knowledge for the whole journey
• Consider the impact of weather forecasts, park/track closures & fire dangers
• Can respond to emergencies & call for help at any point
• Are healthy and fit enough for this journey
If not, change plans and stay safe. It is okay to delay and ask people for help.
Turn on to Southern Expressway Exit then drive for 315 m
Turn left onto Patapinda Road and drive for another 770 m
Turn sharp right onto River Road and drive for another 1.7 km
Turn by turn instructions & maps
Getting started From the Gate 12 car park on River Road, Noarlunga Downs, follow the bitumen path west alongside the river, passing a boardwalk section of about 260m. Once the boardwalk ends, head left along the compacted gravel path, passing a 'Welcome to Perrys Bend west' sign (to your right), and continue the Noarlunga Downs Wetland Trail.....
Directions & comments
Find the toilet at the start.
Find the car park at the start.
After another 9 m turn right.
After another 65 m cross the bridge (about 260 m long)
After another 40 m pass the car park (on your right).
After another 480 m continue straight, to head along Wetlands trail.
After another 25 m veer right, to head along Wetlands trail.
(at the intersection of Wetlands trail & River Road) Continue another 110 m to find the end. Then turn around here and retrace the main route for 1 km to get back to the start.
Know the Hills, grading & facilities
Noarlunga Downs Wetland Trail
Smooth & flat
20 min to 45 min
Quality of track
Smooth and hardened path (1/6)
Flat, no steps (1/6)
Clearly signposted (1/6)
Generally useful facilities (such as fenced cliffs and seats) (1/6)
No experience required (1/6)
Weather generally has little impact on safety (1/6)