Fleurieu Peninsula, Australia
When to go
South Australian summers (December–February) are always sunny, but desert-hot northerlies can bump the temperature over 40°C for days on end. Washed over by sea breezes, the Fleurieu Peninsula tends to dodge the worst of the heat, but time your visit with spring (September–November) or autumn (March–May) when the McLaren Vale vines are either burgeoning with buds or turning russet-red. Winters here are uncrowded but uneventful; summers draw devotees from Adelaide, so things get busy.
PlanesAdelaide’s stylish international airport (www.adelaideairport.com.au) plays host to Qantas, Air New Zealand, Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific flights (among others), arriving from overseas. Domestic flights (Qantas, Virgin Blue, Tiger and Jetstar) wing in from around Australia. The airport is about five kilometres west of the city centre; the Fleurieu Peninsula is an hour’s drive south of here.
AutomobilesDriving to the Fleurieu from Adelaide is a piece of cake - the big-name rental companies all have desks at Adelaide Airport. McLaren Vale is about an hour's drive south of the city; reaching the Port Elliot/Victor Harbor area takes an hour-and-a-half. Try to synchronise your run south with the Southern Expressway’s bizarre one-way system: it runs north-to-south on weekday mornings and weekend afternoons/evenings, then south-to-north on weekday afternoons/evenings and weekend mornings. If you misstime it, add 30 minutes of travel time for the slow crawl through the southern suburbs.
TaxisMost Adelaide taxi companies will take you south into the Fleurieu Peninsula region, but it’ll be a pricey ride. Try Adelaide Independent Taxis (13 22 11), Yellow Cabs (13 22 27) or Suburban Taxis (13 10 08). On the peninsula itself, Peninsular Taxi Service (13 10 08) and Victor Harbor Taxi Service (+61 (0)8 8552 2622) both operate out of Victor Harbor.