Hahndorf, South Australia

Hahndorf is the oldest surviving German settlement in Australia, and it sits snug in the heart of the picturesque Barossa Valley.

Hahndorf Town

Today, it represents an important tourism spot, but it has previously been used for other purposes, including farming.

The town itself is near Adelaide and it can be accessed via the South Eastern Freeway.

It originated when it was settled by Lutheran migrants from a small town called Kay in Prussia (now Poland). Many of settlers who called Hahndorf home in the early days arrived in Australia on-board the Zebra in 1838. Named after Dirk Meinerts Hahn, the Danish captain of the Zebra, the town remains a vital part of Australian history and culture.

The Historic Architecture of Hahndorf

Because of its lengthy history, Hahndorf boasts a selection of pretty architecture that harks back to its unique and fascinating heritage. Throughout the charming streets, you’ll find impressive buildings imbued with German design, and you can explore the ancient folklore that seeps into every nook and cranny.

If that wasn’t enough, Hahndorf and its surrounding scenery is famed for its indigenous dreamtime and migrant artistry, which means you can wander through galleries and museums to learn more about the rich history that has made the area so popular.

Food and Drink in Hahndorf


Foodies will love the eclectic selection of tasty treats in the streets of Hahndorf. The area is well-known for its German-inspired apple strudel and it is also the home of Australia’s largest hotdog. Elsewhere, you can tuck into homemade pastries in family-run cafes, check out Australian delicacies at the range of restaurants, and enjoy locally-made chutney and chocolate.

Because it is set in the Barossa Valley, Hahndorf also boasts a lively wine culture. The region is world-famous for its vineyards, and you can explore all of this and more in the historic town. Boutique wines are served in cosy bars, while craft beers are a firm favorite.

The Churches of Hahndorf

When exploring Hahndorf, you’ll come across two prominent churches – St Michaels, which is the oldest Lutheran church in the whole of Australia, and St Pauls, which dates back to 1846.

Hahndorf really does give you a chance to explore a different side of Australia. Away from the sun-drenched beaches and the lush rainforest, you can travel back in time through a different history, where German culture remains at the forefront and food, drink, and impressive architecture are the name of the game.

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