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Top Things to do in Middleton

Home > Adelaide > Beaches | Day Trips | Family | Places of Interest | Weekend Escapes
by Graeme Fanning (subscribe)
I'm a tour guide who is passionate about South Australia and love to showcase to locals and visitors. Visit my facebook page at
Published February 14th 2016
See what's on offer at Middleton

If you have the urge to get away from the city for either a day trip or perhaps even a weekend and you like somewhere a little less hectic, you can't go past Middleton, on the South Coast, around 80 kms south of Adelaide (about 1 hour 15 min drive).

Middleton is reasonably quiet, although during the summer, the beach is very popular for surfing and for those seeking a beach-side holiday. During the Southern Right Whale watching season which is from June through to October, great vantage points are available at Middleton for viewing the whales' annual migration.

With a population between 800 and 850 Middleton is only 8 kms west of Goolwa and is on the main route between Goolwa and Victor Harbor.

A Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Higgins, in 1849 bought up land in the area originally for a cattle run and soon realised that the River Murray could provide a lifeline for providing goods , particularly South Australian flour, up river to the gold diggers in Victoria, by connecting the river with a railway from Goolwa to Port Elliot. Hence the reason he established the location of the town near the railroad.

The rest is history with the first iron railway in Australia built, which passed through Middleton.

With the settlement of this area came farmers, whalers and then town residents.

Beach side Accommodation


The Middleton Tavern on Goolwa Road at Middleton offers good wholesome country style pub meals at reasonable prices and does get quite busy, particularly on Friday nights and weekends. Would suggest you book for these peak times but otherwise should be fine to stroll on in.

The atmosphere is certainly family-friendly and the dining room is large and open, featuring a large display of nautical artefacts and photo displays of old Middleton.

Middleton Tavern is open 7 days a week from 10 am until late.

If it is simply a coffee you are after, the historic The Mill built in 1855 is open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 10 am to 5 pm as well as Public Holiday Mondays.

Whilst you are enjoying your coffee, The Mill is also the cellar door for Ulithorne Wines and also the venue features fine antiques and paintings by one of the owners, Sam Harrison.

Middleton Tavern


For those of you who seek a weekend or even longer escape, then there are a wide range of accommodation options available.

Some to consider include:

Middleton Old School House which is a bed and breakfast establishment dating from 1869.

It is located at 6 William Street Middleton and accommodation is around $205 per night for a minimum stay of 2-3 nights.

Mindacowie is another historic property built in 1899 on the main Goolwa Road and features four stylish bedrooms and the site includes a large solar heated swimming pool.

Accommodation at Mindacowie starts at $120 per night. There is also option of staying alongside the main house in a two-storey cottage with three bedrooms and two bathrooms.

The Middleton Cottage is a bed and breakfast also on the main Goolwa Road and has two suites, both being Queen sized rooms, rates starting at $140 per night with a minimum stay of two nights or more.

Finally Middleton Caravan Park, accessible from the main Goolwa Road offers a range of accommodation options from camping in unpowered sites right the way through to family ensuite cabins.

Prices range from $45 to $170 per night for two people in high season.

If you want accommodation overlooking the beach on the Esplanade you can pay up to $400 per night for the privilege, dependent upon the property and the season.



As you drive through Middleton you can't help but notice the heritage buildings and one that stands out is Fortuna Gallery which has an amazing mix of antiques and collectables within its walls.

Fortuna has limited openings to the public, however is quite often open on a Sunday.

Fortuna Gallery


A diversion off the main Goolwa-Victor Harbor Road takes you down Chapman Road to the esplanade and crashing waves of Middleton Beach.

Middleton Beach offers attractive sandy tracts to play on and you can watch the many surfers trying their luck with negotiating the waves in their wetsuits.

A great spot for beach picnics and long walks.

Middleton Beach


Whilst you are down at the beach, if you have ever thought you would like to try your luck at surfing, a company called Surf and Sun offer surfing lessons right on the beach and cater for a wide range of learning options.

For example a family package for 2 adults and 2 children is available for a two hour tuition for $240.

You can also get one-on-one personal instruction, again for 2 hour sessions for $120, and if two people are doing it together, then only $100 for the session per person.

If you prefer to surf because you are more experienced, then Surf and Sun have a shop on the main Goolwa-Victor Harbor Road where you can buy all surf related items.

A visit to this part of South Australia wouldn't be a visit without experiencing the Cockle Train which is an historic rail journey by steam train from Goolwa to Victor Harbor, a journey of some 30 minutes.

The Cockle Train only usually operates at certain times of the year (around 140 days a year) and in February is scheduled for Sundays and Wednesdays. During school holidays it runs most days.

The opportunity arises for you to alight or join the train at Middleton should you wish.

The journey will cost you around $29 return from Goolwa to Victor Harbor, however if you decide to do the trip from Middleton to Victor, and return, it will cost you $15.

This is but a selection of what Middleton has to offer.

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Why? An idyllic town on the South Coast ideal for day visits or weekends
When: Any time including weekends
Phone: 08 8555 7000
Where: Middleton SA
Cost: Dependent on your interests and plans
Your Comment
Enjoyed reading - would love to explore someday!
by Diana (score: 2|719) 1713 days ago
Somewhat overlooked this town,but when the surf is up,it is nice to go down to the beach and see them surfing.
by noelp (score: 3|1199) 1711 days ago
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