Adelaide city view from hills. Photographed by amophoto_au. Image via Shutterstock.

Explore South Australia like never before with these six best walking tracks around Adelaide!

Heading into South Australia’s favourite season, summer, what better time to get out and explore Adelaide’s amazing outdoors than by heading out on one of these walking tracks that are all within a short distance of the CBD!

Home to some seriously underrated walking tracks and trails, specifically in the Adelaide Hills; Adelaidians are blessed with wide-ranging views across the city landscape and presented with the perfect spot to watch a sunrise, sunset or enjoy the beautiful nature and wildlife.

Whether you are a hardcore walking junkie or after an easier hike which offers equally stunning views, this list of the six best walking tracks around Adelaide will have you covered:

Peter Nelson Walking Trail
Photographed by Sander Michiels. Image via Shutterstock.

Peter Nelson Walking Trail

The Peter Nelson Walking Trail or ‘One Tree Hill’ as it is better known to locals, offers arguably the most picturesque views of the lot. Situated amidst the Brownhill Creek Recreation Park, One Tree Hill has uninterrupted views across the Adelaide landscape and presents the perfect spot to watch one of Adelaide’s remarkable sunsets. It is only a short 15-minute walk from the McElligott’s Quarry Reserve car park, but features a relatively steep climb on the way up to the peak for some enviable views. Despite its location, it isn’t swarmed with walkers and it is considered one of the best kept secrets of Adelaide’s south-eastern suburbs.

McElligott’s Quarry Reserve – Carrick Hill Dr, Mitcham, SA, 5062
Waite Conservation Reserve Loop Walking Trail
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Waite Conservation Reserve Loop Walking Trail

Another hidden gem, the Waite Conservation Reserve Loop is located behind the University of Adelaide’s Waite Campus. Beginning with a steep step climb, this trail is of medium difficulty and can prove a test for some, but the near four-and-a-half-kilometre circuit is well worth it and can be completed in just three hours. Due to its relatively unknown status, the Waite Loop is usually quiet at any time of the day which provides the perfect opportunity to relax and sit back on the benches half-way through the circuit that also doubles as an ideal sunset viewing point. Like many of these trails, you will often see kangaroos, especially at sunrise and sunset – an added bonus which will make any walk more enticing!

Hartley Grove, Urrbrae, SA, 5064
Chambers Gully Hike
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Chambers Gully Hike

The picturesque Chambers Gully hike seems to be forgotten while the nearby Mount Lofty trails get all the limelight. Located in the eastern suburb’s foothills of Adelaide, Chambers Gully is an offshoot of the renowned Waterfall Gully and features untouched nature, local wildlife, and stunning views from the ridges across Adelaide and the Cleland Conservation Park. The peak of the climb will see you reach Long Ridge Lookout which apart from the public benches and shaded areas for relaxing, visitors will be treated to breathtaking views. The walk itself is moderately hard featuring narrow paths with steep cliffs down, and uneven surfaces throughout. Reaching nine-and-a-half-kilometres and three hours, it is a circuit which will challenge you, but the experience is well worth it.

Opposite 67 Waterfall Gully Road, Waterfall Gully, SA, 5066
 Waterfall Gully to Mount Lofty Summit Trail
Photographed by Sharon Wills. Image via Shutterstock.

Waterfall Gully to Mount Lofty Summit Trail

The Mount Lofty Summit Trail from Waterfall Gully is without doubt Adelaide’s most well-known walking trail and for good reason with its stunning views over the city landscape. A near eight-kilometre return hike with a steep incline, it is a trail which will test you but is fit for people of most ages and abilities. Along the way you will experience all the nature the Mount Lofty Ranges have to offer, on the way to breathtaking views. Although it is one of Adelaide’s busiest walking trails, the Mount Lofty Summit Trail should be a must-do on every South Australian’s bucket list. When you reach the top, why not spoil yourself with a feed or a coffee at The Summit Café – you undoubtedly deserve it!

Waterfall Gully Rd, Waterfall Gully, SA 5066
Mount Osmond Walking Trails
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Mount Osmond Walking Trails

Mount Osmond features a plethora of trails which offer varying difficulties and views for walkers. A favourite of the area, the Wheal Watkins Circuit winds its way around the hillside and offers uninterrupted views across the city to Adelaide’s beaches. As you go along, you can take alternate routes such as the fire access tracks which are signed and offer equally, if not better views across Adelaide which few know about. Trails in the Mount Osmond area are often quiet which offer the perfect break from the stresses of everyday life. The area is best for walking and discovering at your leisure as it’s difficult to get lost, and there are plenty of hidden tracks which offer something for everyone…so go out and explore!

9 Wheal Watkins St, Glen Osmond, SA, 5064
Morialta Falls Plateau Hike
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Morialta Falls Plateau Hike

The Morialta Falls Plateau Hike is unlike any other walking trail in Adelaide. Offering amazing views of Morialta Gorge’s towering cliffs, this walk makes you feel like you are in a world far away from the hustle and bustle of Adelaide. First Falls is just one of the drawcard features of this hike. Standing at 30-metres tall, First Falls cascades a heavy stream throughout winter and autumn, adding plenty to a walk which already gives views of the Adelaide plains, CBD and coastline. Walkers have the option of completing the four-kilometre circuit trail clockwise or anticlockwise, either way you will get to experience all the wonders which makes this Adelaide walking track something truly special.

Morialta Falls Rd, Woodforde, SA 5072

What better way to congratulate yourself on your accomplishments than with a drink (or two) at one of these top places to drink craft beer in Adelaide. Or, to explore more of South Australia’s backyard, prepare to be tantalised by these 10 unique getaway gems to discover around the state.

We acknowledge the traditional owners of the land mentioned in our article, the people of the
Kaurna Nation, and we recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. We pay our respects to their elders past, present and emerging.
Feature image: Photographed by amophoto_au. Image via Shutterstock.
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