More than 40,000 years ago early Aboriginals inhabited South Australia. Aboriginal rock engravings, now believed to be among the oldest in the world, were created in the Olary region of South Australia. Naturaly much has changed since then but the Aboriginal culture is still very much a part of the state.


1802: British explorer Matthew Flinders maps the entire South Australian coast in his ship, the Investigator, after a surprise meeting with French navigator Nicolas Baudin. Despite their respective countries being at war, the two swapped notes just off the Fleurieu Peninsula coast.

1836: The first South Australian settlers land at Kangaroo Island. Surveyor-General Colonel William Light begins his survey of Adelaide and Governor John Hindmarsh arrives on the Buffalo.

1847: The Barossa Valley’s first winery begins operating.

1854: The colony’s first railway, a horse-drawn tram, operates between Port Elliot and Goolwa on the Fleurieu Peninsula.

1872: The Overland Telegraph from Port Darwin is completed and Adelaide becomes the first Australian capital to be linked by telegraph with London.

1901: South Australia becomes a State within the Commonwealth of Australia as the first Commonwealth Parliament is elected.

1994: The Victoria Fossil Cave at Naracoorte on the Limestone Coast is announced as Australia’s eleventh World Heritage listed property.

October 2004: First mainland wilderness areas ever created in South Australia cover 136,372 hectares on Eyre Peninsula and include the Hambidge Wilderness Protection Area, the Hincks Wilderness Protection Area and the Memory Cove Wilderness Protection Area.