How do I get to the Flinders Ranges?
The Flinders Ranges is the largest mountain range in South Australia, and not only is it full of remarkable natural beauty, but it's also culturally significant to the traditional custodians of the land, the Adnyamathanha peoples. Because of this rich history and this region's spectacular landscape, thousands of travellers flock to the Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park each year. Depending on where in Australia you're travelling from, this can be an easy, short journey or it could be a long one. The best way to get to the Flinders Ranges is by car but that doesn't mean you have to drive the whole way, especially if you're from a different state. Regardless of where you live, you can fly into Adelaide Airport and continue your journey by car to the ranges.
Flying to the Flinders Ranges
While you can't fly directly to Ikara-Flinders Ranges National Park, you can fly into Adelaide Airport (ADL), which is only a short-ish 5 and a half-hour drive from the ranges. This is the best way to travel to the park if you're from a different state such as Tasmania, Queensland, Victoria, Western Australia, the Northern Territory, or New South Wales. See below for flight time and prices from each state to Adelaide Airport:
- Flying from Melbourne to Adelaide will take you 1 hour and 20 minutes and cost roughly AUD$96+.
- Flying from Hobart to Adelaide will take you 2 hours and cost roughly AUD$86+.
- Flying from Brisbane to Adelaide will take you 2 hours and 35 minutes and cost roughly AUD$150+.
- Flying from Perth to Adelaide will take you just under 3 hours and cost roughly AUD$140+.
- Flying from Sydney to Adelaide will take you 2 hours and cost roughly AUD$90+.
- Flying from Darwin to Adelaide will take you 3 hours and 35 minutes and cost roughly AUD$130+.
These prices can change depending on what season you're travelling in and how far in advance you want to book.
Once you've arrived at Adelaide Airport, there are six different car rental companies you can choose from to continue your journey to the Flinders Ranges. These car rental companies are Europcar, Avis, Budget Car Rental, Thrifty, Hertz, and Rent-A-Car. The cost of renting a car differs on what type of car you want and how long you'll be renting it for but you can expect to pay roughly AUD$100+ per day.
Driving to the Flinders Ranges
Driving to the Finders Ranges is the best and only way you can get to the national park as it's quite remote and access is limited. If you're driving from Adelaide Airport then your journey will be roughly 5 and a half hours (460km). If you're already travelling from somewhere in South Australia, your journey might be considerably shorter. You can drive to the national park if you live in other states but prepare yourself for one epic road trip if you do as most major cities are at least 10+ hours away.
There are a couple of routes you can take from Adelaide Airport with one route taking you up Augusta Hwy, and the second taking you on Horrocks Hwy. The highways in South Australia are regularly maintained and feature adequate signage with bold lettering for easy navigation. During your drive, make sure to look out for animal crossings or unsafe driving conditions, especially when driving at night.
To make getting to the national park easier, and getting around it once you're there easier, driving a 4WD car is recommended. This will give you access to all areas within the park as some tracks can be quite difficult to drive on in a 2WD. Having said that, you can definitely still get to and explore the park with a 2WD but be aware of potential hazards and be smart while driving extremely uneven/steep roads.