Town tagline: ‘Living the lifestyle’
Wellington is a small settlement on the banks of the River Murray. Like Tailem Bend, prior to European settlement the area around Wellington was home to the Ngarrindjeri people. They made bark and reed canoes and lived on the fish and the animals which came to the riverbank.
Following Captain Charles Sturt the whole area along the Murray was opened up by overlanders who moved sheep and cattle across the land. It was the colonial land developer, John Morphett, who saw Wellington's potential. By 1839 Wellington had become one of the most important settlements on the Murray. The ferry (which was established that year) and the town became the only point where traffic could cross the Murray.
In 1840 a township was surveyed (most of it for John Morphett who had bought large tracts of land in the area), and named after the Duke of Wellington. It grew rapidly as a major transportation stopover point. It was the first stop for paddle-steamers plying the Murray north of Goolwa. It was the stopover point for people crossing the river from Adelaide to Victoria. During the 1850s, it became an important point on the gold run from the Victorian goldfields across to Adelaide.
When the bridge across the Murray was completed in Murray Bridge the town declined in importance.
On the northern side of the Wellington Ferry you'll discover the beautifully restored Pangarinda Botanic Garden. Perfect for natural lovers and birdwatchers its a great place to see how nature can be restored from a damaged environment.