Port Germein is a small seaside town that boasts a big attraction- the longest jetty in South Australia!
by Katrina Gogel
Located at the top of the Spencer Gulf with the Southern Flinders Ranges as its backdrop, the quiet coastal town of Port Germein is a popular holiday destination and stopover for tourists. In recent years on our travels to and from the Eyre Peninsula we’ve taken to calling in and giving the kids a run along the jetty and play at the town’s great little playground. It’s a fantastic way to wear them out and generally has them snoozing in the car in no time!
The 1.5-kilometre Port Germein jetty is the longest in South Australia and was once the longest in the Southern Hemisphere. Purpose built in 1881 to service the grain export industry, the jetty had to be built extra-long to cater for the low tides that occur along the Spencer Gulf.
At the time of being built the jetty was over 1,640 metres long, but wild seas and high tides have periodically battered the jetty causing severe damage and reducing the length to its current 1,532 metres.
Nowadays the jetty is heritage listed and used by locals and visitors alike for recreational fishing and swimming.
On a warm summer day, the clear, shallow waters around the jetty are a great place for a dip. You can walk out to the waters edge from the beach, or use one of the staircases from the jetty instead.
If swimming and fishing aren’t your thing, the jetty is a wonderful place for a stroll with the family. It’s not too high from the ground, has hand rails on both sides all the way to end, and there aren’t big scary gaps between the boards. Our boys love running along this jetty and chasing the vanishing point!
Reaching the 1.5-kilometre end is quite exciting for the little ones (and big people too!) Here you can see remnants of the old damaged jetty stretching further out to sea, and the beautiful Flinders Ranges in the distance. There are always seabirds perched on the old pylons at the end, and you might be lucky to spot some dolphins or stingrays in the water below.
Located just across the road from the jetty carpark is Port Germein’s playground and public toilet facilities.
We were pleasantly surprised by the amount of quality equipment on offer at this quiet country playground, which ranges in age suitability from toddlers through to older children.
The colourful, large, twisty slippery slide is what captured our boy’s attention, and where they spent most of their time playing during our recent visit. The staircase at the back was easy for our three-year-old to climb unassisted, and meant we could sit back and watch them happily play together.
As well as the slide, there are two other large structures which are fun to play on. Kids can test their climbing skills on the Summit structure, or try their hand at the sky surfer (a fancy type of flying fox!).
Other equipment includes:
- Swing set
- Surf board
- Restaurant for imaginative play
- Steering wheel
- Gym equipment
A cement bike track circles the perimeter of the playground, so if you’ve got the kids bikes or scooters with you be sure to get them from the car! They will enjoy pedalling around the little track and trying out the fun, purpose-built bicycle obstacles along the way.
Public toilets are a stone’s throw away and there are multiple, well maintained picnic shelters and BBQ’s over the road on the foreshore – making it the perfect place to enjoy a snack or lunch after your jetty and playground adventures.
What we like about the Port Germein foreshore area:
- A quiet place to spend an hour or two on your travels
- It’s only a few minutes off the main highway
- The jetty! It’s the longest in SA
- The fun slippery dip at the playground
- Being in a small country town means that there is little traffic or noise
- It’s a hidden gem just off the main highway
- Interpretive signage at the jetty carpark
- Public toilets and showers are located next to the playground, directly opposite the jetty
- Multiple picnic shelters and electric BBQ’s are situated along the foreshore, right next to the carpark
- Rubbish bins
- There is bench seating at the end of the jetty and also in the playground area
Things to consider:
- Children will need to be supervised at all times while on the jetty
- The playground is not fenced and is situated along the esplanade
- The playground and jetty are not shaded. Come prepared with sunscreen and hats
- The playground surface is bark, which may not suit toddlers or babies
Things to see and do:
- Grab a bite to eat at the Village Café, just a short walk away in the Port Germein main street.
- You may be in luck and visit on a day that the Little Orange Van on the Foreshore is set up in the jetty carpark selling hot food and drinks.
- Port Germein foreshore markets run monthly and look like great fun. See their facebook page for dates and information.
- Visit nearby Telowie Gorge (approx. 15 minutes’ drive) and go for a family bushwalk. We went there recently for the first time and were wowed by its beauty! See the Play & Go Review HERE.
- Call into Harry’s (on the main highway) and try one of their famous burgers, or stock up on locally made jams, sauces and produce.
Esplanade, Port Germein (approximately 240 kilometres from Adelaide)
For more information and all enquiries please visit the District Council of Mount Remarkable website.
What: Port Germein Jetty and Playground
Where: Esplanade, Port Germein
Who: All ages
At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.
Image Source: All photos by Katrina Gogel
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