The Mid North is a region of South Australia, north of the Adelaide Plains. The indigenous people of the Mid North were the Ngadjuri. There were disputes and conflicts between the white settlers and the Aborigines, particularly in the 1850s and 1860s.
The Mid North stretches from Adelaide upto Port Augusta and is great farming land, producing wheat, wine and wool. The pretty historic towns are set amongst gorgeous landscape and it is well worth driving through.
You can get to the region by two main routes from Adelaide, either heading directly to Port Augusta, or travelling inland towards Peterborough.
Heading along the coastal route, the first main town you will come across will be Port Pirie. Port Pirie is an industrial town home to a large lead-smelting industry. There are also a couple of interesting museums and displays in the National Trust Museum as well as in the Arts Centre. If you visit the Arts Centre then you should also ask to see their wonderful Silver Tree Fern.
Heading further north you can then leave the highway towards Melrose, which has a beautiful setting at the base of Mt. Remarkable. Melrose is a tiny historic town which hosts an interesting museum, as well as some reasonable places to stay.
Nearby is the even smaller town of Murraytown, where you can stop for a drink in the pub and Wirrabara near the beautiful Wirrabara Forest. Continuing along the coast you will reach Port Germein, which is a small and pleasant place to stop and explore on your journey to Port Augusta.
Taking the inland route towards Peterborough you will first pass Kapunda before reaching Auburn. Auburn is an historic town with some extremely beautiful buildings. If you have a couple of hours to spare you should definitely stop and follow the 3km walk which takes to you 24 different historic sites around the town. Heading further north you pass through the wine growing town of Clare, and then onto another historic town of Burra.
Heading east from Peterborough you will drive through the spectacular, rugged landscape of the Mt. Remarkable National Park. The park is situated between Melrose and Wilmington (where you enter the park). Hancocks Lookout is on your drive into the park and offers exceptional views across the area, and the Spencer Gulf. There are also a couple of good walks, including the Heysen Trail and another through the magnificent Alligator Gorge. You can camp at Mambray Creek as well as at Wilmington, and there is a small fee to enter the park and camp.
You can also head north from Peterborough through some pretty little towns amongst the countryside. Orroroo is an interesting agricultural centre which houses some historic costumes and buildings. You can also visit nearby Pekina Creek where there are some fantastic Aboriginal cave paintings. Nearby are Bruce and Hammond, two railheads, and Carrieton which holds a lively rodeo every December.
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