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About Gawler
and South Australia

Gateway to the North

Gawler is a semi-rural town in South Australia and known as the gateway to the North

Prior to freeways and highways being built is was the stopping off point for travellers slowly heading north via bullock dray or horse & cart to remote mining communities and farms. It is also a stopping point on the way to the Barossa Valley with its abundance of wineries.

It’s situated between the hills and the sea, 42 km north of Adelaide. The population of 26,000 is small by international standards, but South Australia is a sparsely populated state with 1.7 million residents and 1.4 million living within an hour’s travel of the capital city of Adelaide.

SA is approximately 5 times bigger than England and it’s bigger than Texas. Gawler is one of the larger towns within the State.

Click here to view some wonderful images of Gawler online.

[Murray Street image taken from Flickr and used under the Creative Commons license. Original image can be viewed here]
South Australia is renowned for its pristine deserted beaches, the stunning gumtree filled Adelaide Hills, the vineyard dense Barossa Valley, having more restored vintage vehicles per head than any other State, excellent fishing, diverse wildlife of Kangaroo Island, excessively energy costs, copious amounts of space, extremely little light pollution outside of the towns showing the astonishing Milky Way at night, a cosmopolitan and easily navigated capital city and a dry climate providing an intensity of light in both summer & winter.

The change between seasons is very distinct with dry hot summers and brief but comparatively cold winters with random and often low rainfall. It’s predominantly an agricultural and mining State, with vineyards, fishing, crops, sheep & cattle & small but significant mining towns to the north & west of Adelaide.

Signs of Aboriginal use of the land date back 20,000 years.

As the State is so dry, instead of timber, many early homes and influential buildings were constructed of bluestone or sandstone, providing distinctive architecture.

Gawler has an abundance of these buildings both within and nearby the main street (Murray St). SA was settled by Europeans in 1836 and was the only State that did not have convict settlers.

Gawler was specifically designed by Colonel William Light (who also surveyed/designed Adelaide and Christchurch in New Zealand), who unfortunately died in 1839 and the work was completed by William Jacob.

Church Hill, as the name suggests has 3 old stone churches, plus many old stone cottages & the magnificent Gawler Primary School. At the northern end of Murray St is Clonlea Reserve with its magnificent high red river banks along the North Para River.

For more information on other buildings & locations of interest within Gawler, please click here.

Lesley’s of Gawler is at 98 – 100 Murray St, Gawler, SA, 5118.

We’re in the magnificent Essex House (shown above), home of HB Crosby’s.

In the main street there are plenty of options for food including 6 pubs & multiple coffee shops.

For a listing on buildings within Murray St that were assessed for heritage restoration please click here.

Click here to find out more about the history of our beautiful building!