Balaklava

Balaklava
Typical wheatbelt town with a number of attractive sandstone buildings.
Located 92 km from Adelaide and 26 km from Port Wakefield, Balaklava is an important service town with a number of interesting buildings. Although it only experiences 391 mm rainfall per year it is a quietly attractive town with rows of pine trees and green ovals and playing fields. In summer, when the rainfall drops to nearly zero and the temperature rises, the town is surrounded the dry barren landscape of the Mid North.

The town came into existence in 1849 as one of the many stopover points on the route from the Burra copper fields to Port Wakefield. The town proper was established in 1870 by an Adelaide grain merchant, Charles Fisher. It was named after the famous Crimean War Battle of Balaklava which Fisher reversed the usual process by building large wheat stores hoping that the commercial advantage would attract farmers to the area. The reason for this unusual development was that a 'tramway' had been completed between Hoyleton and Port Wakefield in 1870 and there was no stopover point on the route. Fisher's instincts were correct. Sheep and wheat farmers moved into the area. The first meeting of the town council occurred in 1878 and by 1885 the town had a population of 550.

Even today the town, on the flat countryside, is economically driven by wheat and sheep. It is characterised by a large number of old style sandstone houses and the distinctive curio of an elaborate 'Keep Left' sign in the centre of town which is notable for the fact that the solitary light globe has an overhead powerline which comes down to it.

Things to see:

Balaklava Folk Museum
The National Trust Centenial Hall is now a folk museum which contains local agricultural implements and a wide range of local memorabilia. It is located in May Terrace and signposted off Wallace Street, the town's main street. Open Monday to Friday on request - Tel: (08) 8862 1626

Avon Art & Craft Guild
This local craft guild meets regularly to practice traditional wool crafts including spinning, dyeing and weaving. For more information contact (08) 8862 7041

Lions Club Walking Trail
There is an attractive walk along the banks of the Wakefield River which has been organised and signposted by the local Lions Club.

Devils Gardens
Located 7 km north east of Balaklava the Devils Gardens Reserve is an interesting picnic destination noted for its fine stands of river box gum trees.

The Rocks Reserve
Located south of Balaklava the Rocks Reserve is a pleasant 11.5 hectare picnic and walking destination on the banks of the Wakefield River. It takes its name from the attractive rock formations which have been created by the river.

Wakefield Regional Council
10 Edith Tce
Balaklava SA 5461
Telephone: (08) 8862 1811
Facsimile: (08) 8862 1115
Email: admin@wakefieldrc.sa.gov.au

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Royal Hotel
9 Edith Tce
Balaklava SA 5461
Telephone: (08) 8862 1607

Terminus Hotel
4 Railway Tce
Balaklava SA 5461
Telephone: (08) 8862 1006

Balaklava Caravan Park
Short Tce P.O. Box 167
Balaklava SA 5461
Telephone: (08) 8862 1261

Royal Hotel
9 Edith Tce
Balaklava SA 5461
Telephone: (08) 8862 1607

Terminus Hotel
4 Railway Tce
Balaklava SA 5461
Telephone: (08) 8862 1006

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