Enjoy the beach this summer at some of South Australia’s accessible beach locations!
Seacliff Beach was the first in SA to roll out a beach mat and is operated by the Seacliff SLSC. The mat is rolled out every weekend during patrols and public holidays from 1pm to 5pm. It is rolled out on Seacliff Beach in front of the Seacliff Hotel where there is a wheelchair ramp leading down to the beach and then the beach mat sits at the base of this ramp allowing access from the ramp to the water edge.
The Seacliff SLSC has a floating beach wheelchair, available during patrol times.
There is an accessible bathroom in the Surf Club rooms, approx a 500m walk from the patrol tower.
There are accessible carparks in front of the Seacliff Beach Hotel and behind the Seacliff SLSC.
Henley Beach is the first totally accessible beach in South Australia, featuring beach wheelchairs for hire, beach mats available 24/7 and the new Changing Places. More information available from the City of Charles Sturt.
SEMAPHORE AND LARGS BAY
The Port Adelaide Enfield Council are trialing two different mats at different locations, Semaphore and Largs Bay and will be in use from 2 November 2016.
The Semaphore beach mat is rolled out on sunny days between 10 am and 3pm and relies on volunteers support. The Largs Bay mat is permanently in place for people to use.
More about the Semaphore and Largs Bay trial or to contact the council to check on the day.
Directions to Semaphore Beach, located near the Semaphore Palais.
Directions to Largs Bay, located near the Largs Bay Sailing Club.
Both locations have accessible bathrooms and car parking in close proximity.
Aldinga Beach is accessible to cars and boats via a ramp near the surf club. There is a wide concrete walkway ramp for beachgoers. During summer months non charitable organisations may charge a small fee to access the beach by car.
A Sandcruiser Wheelchair is available during SLSC patrols. Patrols begin in October and carry through to April and include public holidays. Patrol times are generally from 1pm to 5pm however may be all day on some public holidays. . Bookings for the Sandcruiser can be made by contacting Lorraine Rosenberg at abslsc.secretary.@gmail.com. The Sandcruiser wheelchair was donated by McLaren Vale Districts Lions Club.
There are public toilets near the car/boat ramp and walkway. ABSLSC has toilets and showers that are accessible to people with disability. There are car parks either side of the car/boat ramp and near the ABSLSC.
The beaches along our coastline run for 3km and include Aldinga Beach, Silver Sands and Sellicks Beach – a stunning part of the southern coastal area that runs from Snapper point (in the North) to Myponga Jetty (at the Southern point) and also includes a reef that is an aquatic reserve. There are also car/boat access ramps at Silver Sands and Sellicks Beach. ABSLSC patrol the entire 3km of coastline.
ENCOUNTER LAKES, VICTOR HARBOR
The beach mat is permanently out at Cliff Thorpe Reserve, Encounter Bay, Victor Harbor. There is an accessible bathroom at the reserve.
The Wallaroo Holiday Park is beach front and has beach wheelchairs available for hire and a great accessible family cabin.
AROUND THE COAST
Port Noarlunga is a slice of paradise on the mid coast. People that have a high level of mobility may find they can access the beach via the boat ramp and the sand if often hard enough to wheel across or push a pram along, how you get in the water is up to you! Consider how you will get back up the ramp on return. There are some great water activities to participate in, including snorkeling, so it would be worth the effort. Visit Encounter Marine Park for more details.
There is an accessible bathroom and carparking on the Esplande, Port Noarlunga, however it is quite a walk from the facilities down to the end of the boat ramp.
Check out the Disabled Surfers Association to have a go at surfing, check out their facebook page to find the next event.
Stay tuned to learn more about the beach mat roll out at Port Pirie, contact the Red Cross at Port Pirie for more information.
Whyalla also has matting and beach chairs.
PLUS our favourite family hang – Normanville has purchased a couple of chairs which are available from the Surf Club.
Travelling interstate? check out Accessible Beaches directory to get your beach fix!
Know of any other inclusive initiatives that promote South Australian tourism? Please get in touch we’d love to hear about it.
Originally published by Push Adventures as Which way to the beach, November 2016.
Main image of Seacliff Beach photo courtesy of The Australian.