Tours and Trails
Gawler’s walking trails are designed for self-discovery but guided tours are also available. Both options provide journeys past significant heritage architecture as well as through the beautiful parks, gardens and reserves that line the river banks. Printed guides for the following trails and tours are available from the Visitor Information Centre or online at www.gawler.sa.gov.au
Tours and Trails
Gawler’s Historic Main Street reflects Colonel William Lights vision; to create a settlement that could prosper on the banks of the North and South Para Rivers, bounded by rolling hills and within close proximity to Adelaide.
Today you can witness the remarkable eras from the historical buildings that line Gawler’s Main Street. The attractive setting, coupled with major roles in the mining and agricultural booms of the 1860’s, 70’s and 80’s saw Gawler blossom into a town of broad streets, peaceful parklands and distinctive architecture. As the walk unfolds you will gain an appreciation of the achievements that our ancestors accomplished in times of challenging environmental and social harshness.
The Church Hill area contains the core of Colonel Light’s 1839 Gawler town plan. Due to its historical significance and the overall state of preservation, this area was declared a State Heritage Area on 7 June 1985, the third such heritage area in South Australia.
As you experience the true heritage of Gawler, the attractions will be highlighted unfolding for you why the area is called Church Hill. A wide array of dwellings and outbuildings reflect grand to humble circumstances of people who created the area during the 19th century. Original slate and bluestone kerbs, historic fire hydrants and many other treasures of yesteryear will be revealed.
Gawler is unique in character, a destination moulded from being the first country town in South Australia into its present form, gifted with a natural river corridor and significant built environments.
The Gawler Self-Drive Tour will take you on a journey where you will appreciate the degree that Gawler co tributed towards the development of our state, marvel at its merging of old with new and be envious of our towns lifestyle offerings.
Ephraim Henry (EH) Coombe is a significant person in the history of Gawler and South Australia. He was a business man, a journalist, the Editor of The Bunyip and the Member of Parliament representing the Barossa District. He used his position of influence to champion many social causes. These included temperance, votes for women and the defence of those who were persecuted during the WW1 period because of their German heritage. He opposed conscription and the closure of Lutheran schools.
This 4 kilometre walking tour takes approximately 1.5 hours and commemorates the life and achievements of EH Coombe in Gawler, where he was born and lived for 56 of his 58 years. More information will be available in a forthcoming book on EH Coombe by Helen Hennessy.