Nature-based Tourism:
New Business Opportunities

Stage Two: Request for Proposal

Eighteen nature-based tourism new business opportunities were released by the Department for Environment and Water in October 2017. Expressions of Interest for these opportunities closed on 31 January 2018 and the process has moved to Stage two.

If you are interested in keeping informed about future opportunities, please register your interest.

Nature café

Morialta Conservation Park

Develop and operate a nature themed café by adapting an existing building adjacent to Adelaide’s brand-new Mukanthi nature play space.


  • Operate the existing building for hospitality, meeting or event purposes.
  • Make approved modifications to the building to enhance its function.

Site objectives

  • Establish the Morialta nature play precinct as an appealing destination for children, schools and families.
  • Promote nature play, physical activity and the establishment of personal connections to nature.
  • Avoid any impact on the natural, cultural and aesthetic values of the park.
  • Create jobs and business opportunities for local businesses.

Site description

Regional attractions

Morialta Conservation Park is only 12 km from the Adelaide CBD and is already one of the key nature-based tourism attractions in the Adelaide Hills. Approximately one million people visit the Adelaide Hills each year, with direct tourism expenditure of $110 million.

The Adelaide Hills provide much more than a geographic backdrop for the city; they provide much of its food and they are a major wine-growing district with some 50 cellar doors. The region boasts a great range of wineries, craft breweries and cider houses – with something to tempt everyone. Sampling the fresh local produce or enjoying a meal from one of the providores, restaurants or cafés makes for a delightful day trip or luxurious long weekend. There is a string of quaint towns and villages that offer charming streets for exploring by foot and taking-in the changing seasonal colours.

Local highlights

Morialta Conservation Park is a key attraction for South Australian nature-lovers. The park receives more than 100,000 visits annually and 18% of South Australians surveyed visited Morialta Conservation Park in 2016.

The gorges, waterfalls and woodlands of Morialta have attracted recreational walkers and rock climbers for over 100 years. The three waterfalls along Fourth Creek are popular features of the park and are linked by an extensive network of walking trails. Views from the rock climbing zone over the gorge and nearby Adelaide plains are breathtaking.

A new state-of-the-art nature play space was opened in September 2017 within the Stradbroke Road Picnic Area of the park. The play space incorporates five themed play areas – Frog Island, Eagle’s Perch, Great Snake, Kookaburra's Nests and the Boulders, as well as paths, creeks and climbing trees. The nature play space resulted from a South Australian Government investment of $900,000 and is proving extremely popular.

Morialta Resource Centre is situated right beside the playground. To date, the centre has been operated by the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources as a venue for meetings and events.

The building covers 254 m2. It is in good condition with mains power and water, reverse-cycle split system air-conditioners, a large meeting space, two smaller meeting rooms, a small kitchen, and toilets. A large car park for the nature play space and picnic area is situated beside the centre.

Future potential

The Morialta Resource Centre lends itself to remodelling and refurbishment (subject to approvals). We welcome expressions of interest that look to develop an extraordinary café. Opportunities exist for a food and wine venue that will complement the objectives of nature play, physical activity, health and wellbeing, and nature conservation, and establish the Stradbroke Road Picnic Area as a unique destination in its own right.

Morialta Conservation Park is open from 8.30 am until sunset. The Morialta Resource Centre is not currently open to the public.