Existing in that space between consciousness and coffee.
Published August 31st 2021
COVID-19 has put a stop to almost all of our usual travel plans. No overseas travel for the foreseeable future and very limited interstate options. Making and taking a holiday might seem like a waste of time until you start to look locally. Not only is it often more cost-effective to stay put, but it also supports local businesses when we make our holidays within a day's drive of our homes.
The Copper Coast, on the York Peninsula, is one such local place that should be on everyone's visit list. Tarnasey Farm, located just a minute or two outside of Wallaroo, is a wonderful place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city as well as take a breath of fresh countryside air.
Roughly a (give or take) two-hour drive from Adelaide, on brand new stretches of highway, Tarnasey Farm offers a secluded spot for families, couples or larger groups to take in big wide open spaces, fun farm animals and relaxing trips into little towns by the ocean.
The farm itself, only up and running since 2018, is made up of a private homestead and 7 self-sufficient cabins. The two areas are separated by a large paddock and farm animal stalls where you'll meet beautiful brown cows, cheeky chickens, a hungry pig or two, pampered goats and sheep and stunning horses. All of the holidaymakers staying in the cabins are welcome to join the staff each morning to feed these lovely animals and hear how they came to live at the farm (a lot are rescue animals or have been hand-raised on-site). This is particularly popular with young kids and young-at-heart adults as you'll get to hold out carrots ready to be snatched away by a greedy pig, or grip a bucket of grains as sheep come bounding in for their morning fill.
The cabins themselves vary in capacity, and each comes equipped with a small kitchen area, sleeping areas; a lounge and a private bathroom as well as a little outdoor seated area that overlooks the paddock. There's BBQs for outdoor cooking and a fire pit at each back area, ready for your evening s'more session. There are even toy buckets in each cabin for the kids to use, but if you'd rather them be outside you'll be pleased to know that there's a small playground area beside the animals and they're free to run around in the paddock too (the gates are kept secured beside each cabin so children can't run out to where cars are parked).
Kerry, the owner and proprietor of Tarnasey Farm, includes fresh eggs, milk and fruit upon arrival for each cabin and you can read a little bit about how she came to have the farm in Wallaroo, the reasons behind the names of each cabin and even where each was delivered from.
A short drive out from the farm is Wallaroo itself, with its new and bustling marina area and popular North Beach locations. Another part of the Copper Triangle not to be missed, is Moonta. With Cornish history dating back to the 1800s, there are lots of tourist spots to visit in this little town including the volunteer-run Lolly Shop and the Moonta Mines Tourist Railway which is like going to a museum, but on wheels! All of these places are relatively child-friendly, depending on the age of your child and whether or not you have a pram with you. These are the kinds of towns that you need to only book in a couple of tourist stops before you spend the rest of the day wandering the beaches picking up shells, eating hot chips and listening to the water lap at the sand.
Not everything is pram and wheelchair friendly, but there are ways around that at some of the tourist locations or alternatively, other options (other museums, walking trails etc) - the cabins at Tarnasey Farm however are not ramped, so unless there's a way for you to get up and down the steps, that might be an issue.
This was our first stay away from home with two kids, and we were pleasantly surprised at how comfortable everyone slept and the ease with which we felt at home on the farm. The staff were friendly, there's enough opportunity to chat with other guests if you wanted or alternatively, stick to your own space in the tranquillity of the countryside. It was winter when we stayed, which is ideal for using the firepits and rugging up cosy on the veranda with a hot cuppa, but it would also be lovely in warmer weather when daylight sticks around a bit longer and BBQs are perfect for every meal.
So, if you're looking for a staycation while the rest of the country is off-limits, or you'd simply like to check out something a little closer to home and support local businesses like the farm and the volunteer-run attractions, the Copper Coast might be just the perfect next holiday spot for you.
Tarnasey Farm is on Instagram and Facebook where you can meet their beloved animals and get a taste for what guests get to experience.