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Barmera, South Australia accommodation, attractions & info
Barmera, on the edge of Lake Bonney
Barmera is one of the most popular aquatic playgrounds in South Australia. Situated in the heart of the Riverland, Barmera is a pretty town situated on the shores of Lake Bonney, a lake renowned for its sunsets.
Lake Bonney is a fresh water lake fed from the Murray River through the Chambers Creek wetlands. Because the lake is shallow and has a sandy bottom, it provides safe swimming and is ideal for sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, kayaking, skiing, jet skiing, boating and fishing. The lake also abounds with bird life.
The SA Country Music Festival and Awards is held for 10 days in June leading up to and including the Long Weekend. This includes the South Australian Country Music Awards. There is also many other events held in Barmera including the Riverland Field Days in September, the Barmera Berri Show in March, and Easter and Christmas activities.
Barmera is approximately a two and a half hour drive from Adelaide and two hours from Mildura. The Barossa and Clare Valleys, Mid-North and the lower Murray are all comfortable day tours away, whilst the other Riverland towns of Berri, Renmark, Loxton and Waikerie are all within a half hours drive.
The Riverland enjoys a Mediterranean climate with long hot summer days, warm autumn and spring and generally mild winters.
The area receives approximately 250mm of rain a year and enjoys more sunlight hours than Queensland.
Shoppers are well catered for in Barmera with ample parking and seven days a week supermarket. Shopping Centres in other major towns also provide a wide range of goods and services.
History of Barmera
Barmera is steeped in history, being part of the Cobdogla Station which was established in 1846. The first European to discover Lake Bonney in 1838 was overlander Joseph Hawdon. The National Trust owned Overland Corner Hotel is a museum but is privately leased and operates as a licensed hotel, whilst the Cobdogla Irrigation & Steam Museum has approximately 12 open days a year when the train and traction engine steam up for rides.
The museum is the home of the unique gas driven Humphrey Pump, the only working model in the world, which fires up four times a year on major long weekends and also houses material and photographs from the Loveday Internment Camps.
Local Historical Attractions
- Rocky's Hall of Fame, which is situated in the main street of Barmera, has a host of memorabilia for country music enthusiasts
- The Loxton Historical Village
- Wilabalangaloo at Berri
- Olivewood at Renmark and the Paddle steamer the PS Industry, also at Renmark, are all National Trust operated and open frequently.
The Riverland is renowned for its fine wines. The Bonneyview Winery at Barmera is a boutique winery which has cellar door sales, and a restaurant. It is open seven days a week.
The Berri Estates Winery at Glossop is the largest distillery in the Southern Hemisphere. Other wineries with wine tastings and cellar door sales in the Riverland include, Berri Estates Winery at Glossop - the largest winery in Australia, Norman's Lone Gum Winery at Monash. Renmano and Angoves wineries at Renmark and wineries at Loxton.
The native flora of the region is second to none. Giant river red gums line the course of the Murray and there is a magnificent range of other native plants including red mallee, yorrell, oil bush, sugarwood, native boxthorn and wattles.
Also, Barmera has some fine nurseries including: Highway Fern Haven with indoor rainforest, waterfall and stream, landscaped gardens with fish ponds and native birds. Diane McClelland's Garden Centre is a quaint cottage garden nursery. Try their tea and coffee served in a delightful garden setting.
An abundance of birdlife thrives around the lake and in the creeks and wetlands as well as along the Murray River itself, such as sulphur-crested cockatoos, sacred kingfishers, crimson rosellas, pelicans and many other species.
Nearby Chambers Creek, Loch Luna, The Moorook Game Reserve and Katarapko Conservation Park are all accessible and abound with wildlife. Canoe hire is available with or without a guide. Park Rangers are available for talks to groups by booking in advance. The creeks and the river are ideal for fishing and yabbying.
Rural scenes around the Barmera district provide a constant variety of contrasts from irrigated fruit blocks to mallee scrublands. Dry farming with crops and grazing, marshlands, wetlands, riverside and lakeside are all within close proximity. If a change is a holiday, life in Barmera is one continuous holiday... so why not come and see for yourself? You will be most welcome.
Arts & Crafts
The Riverland is also renowned for its well known artists and crafts people. The Barmera Theatre Gallery in the main street is one of many galleries throughout the area.
Chaffey Theatre has films and live shows at regular intervals. The Cobdogla District Club and the Monash Club hold regular dinner dances. There are many clubs and hotels throughout the Riverland which provide entertainment.
The Berri Hotel holds discos every weekend. Old style dance enthusiasts have a set program for dances held in halls around the Riverland and in the Mallee. Enthusiasts of other forms of dancing such as line dancing and rock and roll are catered for at various venues.
Tennis courts, a yacht club, an aquatic hire, basketball and volleyball courts, football club and cricket ground are all part of the sporting facilities available at Barmera.
The Barmera Recreation Centre caters for exercise groups, aerobics, kinder gym, basketball, indoor netball and cricket, squash and rollerskating. A school holiday program caters for the children. The Lake Bonney Caravan Park provides a holiday program of activities for children in conjunction with the recreation centre. Golfing enthusiasts can play on the landscaped greens at Barmera Gold Club, while bowlers are welcome to use the excellent greens and Barmera Bowling Club facilities. Both venues are popular for the Autumn Carnivals.
Barwell Avenue, Barmera SA 5345
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