Guide to Barossa Valley South Australia
Valley takes its name from the Barossa Ranges, which
were named by Colonel William Light in 1837. Light chose
the name in memory of the British victory over the French
in the Battle of Barrosa, in which he fought in 1811.The
area is 13 km long and the whith is 14 km.
The three major towns of the Barossa
each have a distinctive personality. Tanunda is generally
recognised as the most German of the three with long-standing
traditions dating back to the 1840s when the first German
settlers arrived in the area. The German influence survives
to this day (see Barossa German). Angaston, in contrast,
is considered the English town as it was settled predominantly
by Cornish miners and others from Britain. The third town,
Nuriootpa, was influenced by both the German and British
settlers, and today is the commercial hub of the Barossa
where most of the larger stores are located.
Currently, the Barossa Valley has a
population of about 20,000, most of whom live in Tanunda,
Nuriootpa, Angaston, Williamstown and Lyndoch, each having
over 1000 people, with a few smaller towns such as Moculta
and Springton. All of these towns are part of the Barossa
local government. Many facilities not available in these
towns are usually supplemented in nearby Gawler. In recent
years, increased development in the area has seen opposition
from the local communities.
The area is also a Lutheran stronghold
with many residents identifying themselves as from the
Lutheran religion. Some towns have multiple churches.
Tanunda has Langmeil, and St. Johns, with Nuriootpa having
Each major town has a Lutheran
primary school. Tanunda has Tanunda Lutheran School, Nuriootpa
has Redeemer, and Angaston has Good Shepherd. The Lutheran
primary school at Lyndoch hosts the Barossa Airshow annually
as its fundraiser.
The wine industry plays a major
role in the Barossa, being the main source of employment
for many residents. The many hectares of vineyard are
the most distinctive feature of the area, especially when
viewed from the Mengler's Hill lookout positioned on the
range of hills that form one side of the valley itself.
The success of the wine industry has historically been
celebrated every two years (odd numbers) with a week-long
Vintage Festival. The festival draws visitors from all
over the world and has entertainment for all tastes including
a huge street parade, concerts and gourmet dining.
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