Tantanoola, South Australia

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South Australia
Post office
Tantanoola is located in South Australia
Coordinates37°41′51″S 140°27′20″E / 37.697439°S 140.455519°E / -37.697439; 140.455519Coordinates: 37°41′51″S 140°27′20″E / 37.697439°S 140.455519°E / -37.697439; 140.455519[1]
Established10 July 1879 (town)
23 February 1995 (locality)[4][5]
Elevation25 m (82 ft) (Railway Station)[7]
Time zoneACST (UTC+9:30)
 • Summer (DST)ACDT (UTC+10:30)
RegionLimestone Coast[8]
State electorate(s)MacKillop[9]
Federal Division(s)Barker[10]
Mean max temp[11] Mean min temp[11] Annual rainfall[11]
19.0 °C
66 °F
8.2 °C
47 °F
712.4 mm
28 in
Localities around Tantanoola:
Millicent Rocky Camp
Mount Burr
Mount McIntyre
Canunda Tantanoola Glencoe
German Flat German Creek Burrungule
FootnotesAdjoining localities[1]

Tantanoola is a town in regional South Australia. The name is derived from the aboriginal word tentunola, which means boxwood / brushwood hill or camp. Tantanoola was originally named 'Lucieton' by Governor Jervois after his daughter Lucy Caroline, on 10 July 1879. It was changed by Governor Robinson to 'Tantanoola' on 4 October 1888. At the 2006 census, Tantanoola had a population of 255.[12]

Tantanoola is in the Wattle Range Council local government area, the South Australian House of Assembly electoral districts of MacKillop and Mount Gambier, and the Australian House of Representatives Division of Barker.


The township of Tantanoola is situated in the Hundred of Hindmarsh, 425 km south east of Adelaide, and was once a portion of Mayurra Station. It was the second town of importance on the Mount Gambier to Rivoli Bay railway line which was built in 1878, converted from narrow to broad gauge in 1957 and ceased operating to freight in April 1995 then Limestone Coast Railway tourist passengers on 1 July 2006 which spanned across 128 years between Tantanoola and Mount Gambier.[citation needed]

The historic Tantanoola railway station is listed on the South Australian Heritage Register.[13]

Tantanoola Tiger[edit]

Caves near Tantanoola

Tantanoola is known for the Tantanoola Tiger, a phantom cat which supposedly stalked the area during the late nineteenth century. In August 1895 an animal was shot by one Thomas John Donovan, which was believed to have been the mysterious predator. The animal turned out to be more like a wolf than a cat. Later, it was determined to be an Arabian wolf, although how it arrived in South Australia has been the subject of a number of theories. It is currently preserved and on display at the Tantanoola Hotel (which is also known colloquially as the Tantanoola Tiger Hotel).[14] Tantanoola Caves Conservation Park, featuring a spectacular dolomite cave is located nearby.

Australian poet Max Harris wrote a poem titled "The Tantanoola Tiger", which is included in the collection The Angry Penguin: the Poetry of Max Harris, published by the National Library of Australia. [15][16]


The next station northwest along the railway line was Snuggery. Snuggery is not recognised as a separate town, but is part of Tantanoola towards Millicent. The area includes the Snuggery Power Station with three diesel-powered gas turbines, and the Kimberly-Clark woodchip and paper pulp mill. The pulp mill was commissioned in 1992 but ceased operations in 2011.[17] It was demolished in November 2012.[18]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Search results for 'Tantanoola, LOCB' with the following datasets being selected - 'Suburbs and Localities', 'Government Towns', 'Counties', 'Local Government Areas', 'SA Government Regions', 'Land Development Plan Zone Categories' and 'Gazetteer'". Location SA Map Viewer. Government of South Australia. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  2. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Tantanoola (UCL)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 21 February 2018. Edit this at Wikidata
  3. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Tantanoola (SSC)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 21 February 2018. Edit this at Wikidata
  4. ^ Morgan, William (10 July 1878). "Untitled proclamation re the Town of Lucieton" (PDF). The South Australian Government Gazette. Government of South Australia. p. 70. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  5. ^ Kentish, P.M. (23 February 1995). "GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES ACT, 1991 Notice to Assign Boundaries to a Place" (PDF). The South Australian Government Gazette. South Australian Government. p. 678. Retrieved 15 May 2018.
  6. ^ a b c "Postcode for Tantanoola, South Australia". Postcodes Australia. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
  7. ^ "Search results for 'Tantanoola, LOCB' with the following datasets being selected - 'Suburbs and Localities', 'Gazetteer' and 'Railway'". Location SA Map Viewer. Government of South Australia. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  8. ^ "Limestone Coast SA Government region" (PDF). The Government of South Australia. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  9. ^ "District of MacKillop Background Profile". Electoral Commission SA. Retrieved 29 March 2016.
  10. ^ "Federal electoral division of Barker" (PDF). Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 28 March 2016.
  11. ^ a b c "Monthly climate statistics: Summary statistics Mount Gambier Aero (nearest weather station)". Commonwealth of Australia , Bureau of Meteorology. Retrieved 27 November 2018.
  12. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Tantanoola (L) (Urban Centre/Locality)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 29 October 2011.
  13. ^ "Tantanoola Railway Station & Goods Shed". South Australian Heritage Register. Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources. Retrieved 26 August 2016.
  14. ^ "Tantanoola". Wattle Range Council. Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 31 May 2007.
  15. ^ "Harris Poetry". www.ernmalley.com. 28 December 2007. Retrieved 13 September 2008.
  16. ^ "Angry Penguin: Selected Poems of Max Harris". www.nla.gov.au. 11 September 2000. Retrieved 13 September 2008.
  17. ^ "Kimberly-Clark Corporation: A Proud History". Kimberly-Clark. Retrieved 16 May 2016.
  18. ^ Tasha Impey (5 November 2012). "Explosive end for Tantanoola pulp mill". ABC South East SA. Retrieved 16 May 2016.