A proposal for a ferry service between the Yorke Peninsula and Adelaide is gaining momentum, with local MP Fraser Ellis advocating for its potential to boost tourism in the region.

Ellis recently convened a meeting with ferry operator SeaLink and Tourism Minister Zoe Bettison to explore the feasibility of the idea.

“The introduction of such a service would not only invigorate tourism but also stimulate economic activity in the southern region of the peninsula,” Ellis remarked enthusiastically.

Confirming the discussion held on April 5, Minister Bettison stated, “The concept of a new ferry service was presented to SeaLink for their consideration.”

Regarding the state government’s stance on the proposal, Bettison remained non-committal, stating, “While we are open to exploring innovative tourism initiatives, no formal position has been taken at this stage.”

However, in a previous exchange with Ellis, Bettison had acknowledged conversations with SeaLink about the potential for a ferry service from Glenelg to Port Vincent.

The concept of a ferry linking the Yorke Peninsula with mainland South Australia was initially broached in 2019 but was shelved due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Former SeaLink managing director, Jeff Ellison, now chair of the Kelsian Group, had previously outlined plans for a service connecting Yorke Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, and Glenelg. Discussions had also revolved around the possibility of a direct route from Glenelg to Kingscote.

Speaking on the potential benefits, Ellison highlighted Glenelg’s status as a tourism hub and underscored the appeal of offering visitors diverse travel options.

While acknowledging challenges such as projected passenger numbers and infrastructure requirements, Ellis remained optimistic, suggesting that with careful planning, these hurdles could be overcome.

Regarding potential docking sites, Ellis remained impartial, suggesting both Port Vincent and Edithburgh would necessitate upgrades to accommodate ferry operations. Port Vincent Progress Association spokesperson Peter Lehman expressed support for restoring the town’s wharf, citing concerns about the depth of the marina entrance.

“The wharf would be a preferable option,” Lehman remarked.