If you enjoy relaxing and gazing at a backdrop like no other, the historic river port of Mannum is the place to be.
Birthplace of the paddlesteamer and home of the PS Marion, Mannum is only 80km down the freeway from Adelaide and an hour from the Barossa. Here you can escape, relax, recharge and enjoy.
Mannum township currently supports a population of approximately 2300 residents who enjoy a lifestyle in keeping with the environment - peaceful and relaxing.
The magnificent Mary Ann Reserve situated adjacent to the towns business centre provides some 350 metres of lawned area right on the banks of the broad and majestic River Murray. This reserve, known locally as the "Rec", provides a delightful setting for picnic and free barbeques, boat ramp and adequate parking.
Cruise boats Proud Mary and Murray Princess are regular users of the historic town wharf at the reserve as part of their tour package. The Jester is available for short cruises from this wharf.
The PS Marion, an original steamer of the paddle boat era, is currently moored near the Heritage Listed Randell Dry Dock. This vessel has been restored to full steaming capacity. The vessel is owned by the Mid-Murray District Council and is an integral part of the new Mannum Dock Museum of River History which is open daily. Limited public cruises are available on the PS Marion. Details are available from the Visitor Centre.
Mannum is centrally located to enable visitors to use the town as a base for their activities and to visit places of interest in the immediate area.
The Mannum waterfalls reserve, situated approximately 9km on the Murray Bridge road is a geological phenomenon with large granite outcrops rising from the plains around Reedy Creek to provide natural waterfalls. Alongside these outcrops are walking trails for those who wish to enjoy the scenery at close quarters.
The Younghusband Road on the eastern side of the River provides approximately 18km of one of the most unique drives along the entire River system. The road winds past lagoons, quarries (from which rock was obtained to build the Goolwa Barrages), and the main river.
A scenic lookout, 200 metres above the river valley, is situated on the northern extremity of the town and provides visitors with an uninterrupted 6km panorama of the River Murray Valley and the Mannum township.
Noa-No Landing, the original launching place of William Randell's "Mary Ann" is easily accessible, 5km along the Purnong Road from Mannum and the spot is marked with a cairn recording the significance of the site. This trip takes in 15km of river lagoons which are home to and breeding grounds for many species of native birdlife.
Stay in Mannum
The council owned Mannum Caravan Park, situated immediately north of the town ferries, has 165 powered sites in a well shaded and lawned area, and has excellent river frontage, with a well maintained beach area. The park provides well maintained shower, toilet and laundry facilities, together with a kiosk and resident caretakers, who also provide cabin accommodation.
A privately owned and operated caravan park is also on the Eastern side of the river. The Cowirra Caravan Park is situated in the township of Cowirra, approximately 2km north of the ferries.
A well appointed motel with full restaurant and convention facilities and holiday flat units, several holiday houses, B&Bs and the above caravan parks provide a wide choice of holiday accommodation for visitors.
Shopping facilities are first class, with supermarkets, take-away food outlets, chemist, delicatessens and craft shops.
Sports and boating
Sporting and recreational facilities are excellent, with clubs and venues providing bowls, tennis, golf (on a challenging nine hole fully greened course), football and cricket etc. Indoor sports are catered for in the magnificent Mannum Leisure Centre, which provides activities such as badminton, squash, basketball, rollerskating, etc., as well as a fully equipped gym. This centre is also used for theatrical performances, and apart from the large stage, all necessary public address and amplification systems and lighting are available.
Of course, there is always the river, and the area provides many concrete boat launching ramps to enable fisherman and ski-boat operators to safely launch their boats. Activities such as swimming, boating, fishing, etc., as well as cruising the mighty Murray River are enjoyed by many of the boaties who visit the area.
After enjoying your day, there is no better place to visit than the club. The Mannum Club provides a meeting place for the community to relax and enjoy life, with an excellent dining room and bar facility which is supplemented by social functions such as live bands etc., on special weekends. Visitors are welcome at the Club. Many members are people from Adelaide who own property in the area.
The Barossa Valley, Victor Harbor, Goolwa, Birdwood, Hahndorf, Swan Reach, Blanchetown and Morgan are all areas that are easy day trips for visitors who choose Mannum as their base.
As an alternative to using your vehicle as a means of transport, you may choose to hire a houseboat. There are many hire boats moored in the area, as we have perhaps the best cruising waters on the entire Murray system. Within relatively short distances the scenery changes from willow lined banks to mighty cliffs then back to magnificent gum tree lined banks and rural scenery. Turn the next corner, and the scene may repeat itself, or be completely different. Such is the life aboard a leisurely houseboat on the river.