Gleesons Landing

Situated between Corny Point and Marion Bay on Yorke Peninsula, Gleesons Landing has been a favourite camping spot with South Australians for many years.  It's about 275 kilometres from Adelaide, and only 10 kilometres from Corny Point.  The quickest way to get there is to go past Ardrossan, then turn off right to MInlaton.  Head south out of Minlaton and then turn right to head towards Warooka.  About 7 kilometres before Warooka, not far after you past the township of Hardwicke Bay, there is a turn off to Point Turton.  Keep following this road (sealed at first but then unsealed for most of the way) for about 35 kilometres until you reach Corny Point.  You will come to T junction and a brown sign with a list of place names ie "Marion Bay", "Gleesons Landing", "Daly Heads" etc etc (not in that order).  Follow this road (sealed) heading towards Marion Bay.  All the places of interest are on the right, so keep an eye out for the Gleesons Landing turn off - it's about 10 k's from Corny Point.  At the time of writing there is no sign indicating which turn off it is, but when you pass a side road leading off to the right, look down it and you'll see the sign pictured below....

Turn right and follow the dirt road to the coast.  You will see the camping ground.  There are 3 long drop toilets in this area and several bins to put your rubbish in.  There are no other facilities.  The main camping area is quite nice really, especially in the cooler months.  There are a few trees which provide some shelter, which is uncommon along this stretch of coast.  If you follow the road through the main camping area, it follows the coast for a short distance before ending in a car park.  You can, if you have a 4wd, access the beach here.  It can be very soft in places though and you have to watch the tides.  You can walk onto the beach too though, and follow it north.  Before the beach, and back to the south, there are more camping spots set in amongst low lying scrub.  They are open areas, but relatively well screened from one another.  If the weather is pleasant, they are nice spots to camp.  The coast here though is rocky, with a very short stretch of sand leading to the water.  The reef/rock extends well out and is exposed at low tide. 

The dirt road from the Corny Point - Marion Bay Road leading to Gleesons Landing is unsealed but it's in good condition, so it's good for all types of vehicles.  Once you reach the camping area, the road deteriorates, but is still negotiable.  Some of the tracks leading to individual campsites are just that - tracks - so take care.  The roads are slippery after rain, but with care, you should be able to get through. 

Gleesons Landing is quite a large area and there are several campsites that will accomodate larger groups.  Campertrailers and caravans should also be able to find somewhere here, although things may be a bit tight if trying to back a caravan.  The sites are sandy dirt, sometimes with a bit of grass in the winter!!.  Tent pegs are easily placed. 

Camping in one of the open areas south of the beach.

As the sign says, there are camping fees.  They can be paid at the following locations:

  • Yorke Peninsula Visitor Information Centre, Minlaton
  • Point Turton General Store
  • Corny Point General Store
  • Warooka IGA
  • Hardwicke Bay General Store
  • From any of Council's Offices in Maitland, Minlaton, Warooka and Yorketown
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    Make sure you do organise payment as it would be a shame to lose this spot to camping. 

    Keep in mind that this campground can become very crowded at peak times.  If planning to visit at Easter or during any other long weekend then make sure you get there early.  The good spots go first of course. 

    The beach is a great place to fish, or just watch the sunset.  It faces west, so any wind from the north/north east/south east will be pretty much offshore, which makes things much more comfortable.  Any wind from the westerly quarter will be onshore.  I have only ever caught mullet from the beach.  Fishing here on a calm Autumn day with the mullet run in full swing is a great experience.  Salmon, both juvenile and the big 'uns, visit this beach, as well as the occasional mulloway.

    In the summer it's also a good place to swim.  Although subjected to some rips and currents, they are not as severe or dangerous as those on beaches like Daly Heads or Berry Bay.  However, it is still no place for beginners.

    That's the beach in the distance there - a beautiful spot.  This is looking north.

    Gleesons Landing is a Rock Lobster Sanctuary.  This means of course, that you can't take any Rock Lobster in the waters around Gleesons Landing.  The coastline itself is quite spectacular, especially north and south of campground.

    Looking south.  Keep heading south for about 5 kilometres and you will reach Daly Heads, the famed surfing and fishing beach.

    This is looking south again, this time at low tide.  No good fishing here.  The beach is the best option.

    Photographers will find plenty to keep them amused and some interesting birds turn up along the shallow reefy area exposed at low tide (see above photo).  Because almost all of the surrounding countryside has been cleared for farming, there is not much in the way of wildlife.  Kangaroos are seen here quite regularly, but that's about it.  If your'e into birds of prey, the cleared land seems to have improved the numbers of Nankeen Kestrels and Black-winged Kites.  Both these species are very common. 

    The endangered Hooded Plover nests along the beach, so be mindful of them.  In the breeding season, it would make sense to keep vehicles off the beach altogether.  Avoid the area above the high tide line and at the base of the dunes.

    Winter and Autumn are my favourite times of the year to camp here.  I usually have the place to myself and can have a campfire going to help keep warm.  I generally spend a couple of nights here, spending the days chasing salmon at Daly Heads or mullet from the beach just a few hundred metres from the campsite.  Gleesons Landing is very quiet if there is no one else around, with the waves breaking on the beach the only noise.  If camping here in the cooler months, make sure the wind is coming from the easterly quarter - a westerly wind is onshore and can be bitterly cold.

    Summer is not bad here either.  It's usually a bit cooler than Adelaide and, if you can secure one of the spots under the trees, there is relief from the sun.  The flies can be annoying in the warmer weather though. 

    Another good thing about Gleesons Landing is that it is not too far from other places of interest.  As mentioned, Daly Heads is a magnificent beach, famed here in SA for it's fishing and surfing.  The swell can be quite large and 10-15 foot waves are common.  Berry Bay is only about 8k's away and this another popular surfing location.  Corny Point, 10 k's from Gleesons, is a nice little spot with a general store and a caravan park.  There are several other places along this stretch of coast that offer superb fishing and sight seeing, and Gleesons Landing is central to it all.