house and windmill on the Yorke
Peninsula near Yorketown
Major service town on the southern tip of the
Located 230 km west of Adelaide, Yorketown is a
small rural service centre which is literally
surrounded by saltpans. The area around
Yorketown was settled in the late 1840s by a
group of farmers eager to exploit the region's
grain growing potential. They planted crops of
barley and wheat and grazed sheep. By 1872, even
though the size of the community was still very
small, the town was laid out and blocks of land
were sold. In this year the Melville Hotel was
completed and by 1876 the attractive Yorke Hotel
and the Methodist Church had both been
completed. The extraordinary number of salt
lakes in the area persuaded a local wit to
advocate that the town be renamed Salt Lake City
but it failed to capture the local imagination.
The town still bears the name of the surveyor
who laid it out in 1872.
Things to see:
The main attraction in the area are the
extraordinary salt lakes. At various times they
have been mined for their salt. Like many salt
lakes in wheatbelt areas they are vulnerable to
pink algae and consequently can acquire a gentle
pink hue in certain seasons and under specific
Built in 1876 the Yorke Hotel, with the historic
pump outside, is a fine example of the sense of
prosperity which was common when the new
wheatbelt towns were established.
St. Columbašs Catholic Church
Built in 1903 this handsome church is another
example of the prosperity which characterised
the early history of the town.
Travel out of Yorketown on the Stansbury Road
for about 10 km and you will see a parking bay.
Nearby are two large and unusual granite rocks
known as the Bear Rock and Clown Rock.