Mother baby dolphin large
Mother baby dolphin large

5 unforgettable experiences and gifts for mum this Mother’s Day

09 May 2024 5 min read

Give the gift of time this Mother’s Day with these unforgettable days out in South Australia’s national parks.

A kangaroo nuzzles its joey

Here are our top picks for activities, adventures and experiences to share with your family this weekend.

1. See the beautiful colours on show at Mount Lofty Botanic Garden

Located just a 25-minute drive from the Adelaide CBD, Mount Lofty Botanic Gardens is the perfect place to treat your mum to a relaxing picnic or walk, surrounded by autumn splendour.

The maples, ash and oaks and liquidambar trees are currently a sea of rich reds, oranges, yellows, and browns. The picturesque landscape will take your breath away. Pack a camera and grab some beautiful family pictures, with one of the most dramatic backdrops in South Australia!

2. Take your mum for afternoon tea at Cleland and a walk around the park

Nestled within a natural bush setting and located just 20 minutes from the Adelaide city centre, Cleland Wildlife Park will wow your mum with an up-close and immersive nature experience like no other.

As you make your way around the park you may see marsupials such as koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, wombats and dingoes and an array of native birds, snakes, reptiles and even the elusive echidna.

After a walk around the park soak up the sunshine in the leafy café garden. You’ll see Superb Blue Wrens and potoroos, and if you’re around at 12:30pm, you’ll catch lorikeet feeding time. If it’s chilly you can warm up next to the wood fire.

3. Try and spot a whale at Encounter Bay Marine Park

The whale watching season has begun, so why not grab your binoculars and head down to Encounter Bay Marine Park to see if you can spot some of these majestic creatures. Take a walk to the top of the Bluff, or head to Granite Island for a day of exploring! Basham’s Beach is pop­u­lar with female whales and their calves. Remember to stop in at the SA Whale Centre for a whale fact warm-up before you get started. For more information about the whales that visit South Australia’s shores, read our top spots for whale-watching in South Australia.

4. Take a walk through the stunning Glen­thorne Nation­al Park-Itya­mai­it­pin­na Yarta

Why not explore one of the stunning walks through Glen­thorne Nation­al Park-Itya­mai­it­pin­na Yarta. Frog Rock in the O’Halloran Hill section of Glenthorne has an amazing view from the coast to the hills that goes for miles, perfect for a sunny autumn morning out with the family. Glenthorne is also home to one of the biggest adventure playgrounds and nature play spaces in South Australia. The fossil dig table, harnessed flying fox and ninja course will keep the kids busy and there are BBQs and picnic tables that would make a brilliant spot to spoil your mum!

5. Explore the Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary

Surprise your mum this weekend with a visit to the Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary. Located just half an hour’s drive from the Adelaide CBD in the Port River and Barker Inlet, the Adelaide Dolphin Sanctuary is a great location for wildlife-watching, a dolphin boat cruise, casual strolls or even kayaking. It’s one of the few places in the world where you can see wild dolphins living so close to a city. Inside the sanc­tu­ary you will find a 10,000 year-old man­grove for­est, as well as sea­grass, salt­marsh, tidal flats and tidal creeks, which all pro­vide habi­tat and food for the dol­phins. Why not take your mum on an adventure kayaking, hire a boat or try a coastal walk?

A hairy nosed wombat joey stands close to its mother

Stuck for gift ideas?

Look no further than these feel-good gifts while also supporting conservation in South Australia.

1. Cleland Wildlife Park experiences

Cleland Wildlife Park gift vouchers are available in time for Mother’s Day. From one-off day passes to yearly memberships, there is something for everyone. The best bit? Knowing that your purchase is contributing to the many programs and conservation efforts undertaken at the park. Gift cards are convenient and easy to purchase online.

2. Koala Plate

Looking for something special for a wildlife lover? We think a Koala Plate might just be the perfect idea. Available for $151 for an existing vehicle registration, these special number plates make a truly unique gift that your loved one will never forget. The best part? $50 from each purchase goes towards a fund to support the state’s wildlife rescue and rehabilitation sector. Find out more and order today by visiting Ezy Plates. For more information on how to purchase a number plate as a gift, visit Ezy Plate’s FAQs.

2. Annual parks pass

A multiple entry parks pass gives the gift of experiences at the best of South Australia’s national parks all year-round. You can then take in sites like the white sand beaches of Lincoln and Coffin Bay national parks, the rugged coastline of Deep Creek National Park and the ancient mountain landscapes of Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park.


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