Carpenter Rocks is a tiny little coastal town on the Limestone Coast with less than 200 residents, only about 35km south-west of Mount Gambier. Our Explorer Sammy Brett headed down there to check out the eerie shipwreck site shrouded in mist…

Highlights
  • Reach a secluded camping location
  • A breathtaking, offbeat retreat
  • Great photography opportunities of the shipwreck
Long Weekend Microadventure

It was a long weekend with no plans, so I decided to pack up the 4WD and set off for a brief expedition to South Australia’s rugged Limestone Coast.

Located just outside of Mount Gambier, at the Southern end of Canunda National Park, it is reached by driving through massive pine plantations which eventually lead to an epic winding, sandy track to the site.

Sammy Brett Carpenter Rocks Limestone Coast South Australia

Once you arrive and set up camp, a mere stone’s throw away from the Cape Banks Lighthouse, the true atmosphere of this wild place will reveal itself.

An ominous, brooding sea mist was beginning to blanket the horizon when I arrived, but this only spurred me to explore the beach and wreck that lies there — and what an eerie sight it was.

Sammy Brett Carpenter Rocks Limestone Coast South Australia

With the rain increasing, I made my way down the deserted beach to capture the wreck in fading light. Although devoid of other adventurers, there were a group of seals who seemed to be awaiting me; guardians of the rocks.

A night alone with the sounds of the ocean lapping against the shore (amongst other strange noises) and the endless fog, was certainly a cloistered experience!

Sammy Brett Carpenter Rocks Limestone Coast South Australia

Essential Gear
  • Camping gear
  • Torch
  • Camera
  • 4WD (a 2WD car could access the site weather permitting)
  • Sense of adventure
  • Fishing gear
How To Get There

Located 35km south-west of Mount Gambier in the south-east of South Australia. 4WD drive recommended.

The town is very small, it has a general store, but I would suggest bringing your own supplies. Pay the campsite fees online in advance, as there is no good network signal from the site.

Note: the lighthouse is located a further 4km down a sand track from the town of Carpenter Rocks.

Activities
  • Camping
  • Photography
  • Exploring the beach & dunes
  • Fishing / Diving / Boating

Skill Level

Beginner – Intermediate – some basic knowledge of camping and driving on beach roads is all you need!

Distance Covered

The drive takes roughly 5 hours from Adelaide. It takes a further 2 hours to the Grampians in Victoria (recommended!).