Hahndorf in the Adelaide Hills region is Australia's oldest surviving German settlement. Hahndorf has plenty of souvenir shops, craft outlets and galleries to explore. There's still a strong German flavour in the town, most evident in the smallgood outlets and German bakeries that line the main street. Visitors can pick their own strawberries at Beerenberg Strawberry Farm or visit the former home and studio of Sir Hans Heysen, The Cedars. There are several good winery cellar doors in the area and the Hahndorf Farm Barn is an enjoyable stop for families.
The town was settled by Lutheran migrants largely from in and around a small village then named Kay in Prussia and now known as Kije, Lubusz Voivodeship in Poland. Many of the settlers arrived aboard the Zebra on 28 December 1838. The town is named after Dirk Meinerts Hahn, the Danish captain of the Zebra.
Early German settlers
During the British colonisation of South Australia, the settlers were mostly British, but some German "Old Lutherans" also emigrated in the early years. The first large group of Germans arrived in 1838, with the financial assistance of the Emigration Fund. Most moved out of Adelaide and to the Barossa Valley and settlements in the Hills such as Hahndorf, living in socially closed communities, by 1842, and did not participate in government until 15 years later.
Visitor information centre
Hahndorf is 26 km (16 mi) southeast of Adelaide via the M1.
The 864/864F bus between the Adelaide city centre and Mount Barker stops at two stops in Hahndorf. The 864 stops every station, while the 864F runs express between Stop 13 Glen Osmond Road and Stop B2 West Terrace.
- 1 Beerenberg Family Farm, 2106 Mount Barker Rd, ☏ . M-F 9AM-4:15PM, seasonal. A pick-your-own strawberry farm open during the warmer season (generally November to April). Fresh, juicy strawberries and family fun. Entry $5 per person, free for 12 and under; strawberries are $10.95/kg.
- 2 Hahndorf Farm Barn, 2282 Mount Barker Rd, ☏ . M-F 10AM-4PM. Petting zoo with a spectacular variety of animals, including but not limited to cows, ponies, deer, ducks, kangaroos, sheep, goats, peacocks, reptiles, and emus. Includes BBQ areas, pony and tractor rides, and daily opportunities to milk cows or hold pythons.
- 3 Hans Heysen Art Studio, 68 Heysen Road, ☏ . Tu-Su 10AM-4:30PM. The museum gallery of one of South Australia's most prominent artists, with guided tours.
- 1 The German Village Shop, 50 Main Street, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Daily 10AM-5PM. Family-owned business selling authentic German products, with a particular focus on Black Forest cuckoo clocks and traditional beer steins.
- 1 Hahndorf Inn, 35 Main Street, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Su-Th 10:30AM-10PM, F Sa 10:30AM-midnight. A local institution since 1863, serving a fusion of hearty German cuisine and Aussie pub food.
- 2 The Plough Hahndorf, Unit 2/42 Mount Barker Rd, ☏ . M W Th Sa Su 8AM-3PM, F 8AM-10PM, closed Tu. Family-owned Irish cafe.
- 3 Udder Delights Cheese Cellar, 91 Main Street, ☏ . M-Th 10AM-4PM, F-Su 9AM-5PM. An inductee into the SA Tourism Awards Hall of Fame, options here are as wide as free samples, high teas, ploughman's lunches, cheese fondues, and wine-and-cheese pairing classes. You can even order cheese wedding cakes!
Due to its proximity to Adelaide, Hahndorf is primarily a day trip destination. However, several hotels are available.
- 1 Hahndorf Motel, 60 Main Street, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Centrally located budget option. Clean rooms. Spanish, French, and Portuguese-speaking staff available.
- 2 Manna by Haus, 25 Main Street, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Clean and quiet "Scandinavian-inspired" option.
Hahndorf is not a part of Adelaide, and like other towns in the orbit of a bigger city, doesn't like being conflated with the nearby city rather than recognised for its own identity.