Tanunda, South Australia

Coordinates: 34°31′0″S 138°58′0″E / 34.51667°S 138.96667°E / -34.51667; 138.96667
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South Australia
Looking across the vineyards towards Tanunda from Mengler Hill Lookout
Tanunda is located in South Australia
Coordinates34°31′0″S 138°58′0″E / 34.51667°S 138.96667°E / -34.51667; 138.96667
Population4,588 (2016 census)[1]
Location69 km (43 mi) North East of Adelaide via
LGA(s)Barossa Council
State electorate(s)Schubert
Federal division(s)Barker
Localities around Tanunda:
Nuriootpa Angaston
Seppeltsfield Tanunda Vine Vale
Gomersal Rowland Flat

Tanunda is a town situated in the Barossa Valley region of South Australia, 70 kilometres north-east of the state capital, Adelaide. The town derives its name from an Aboriginal word meaning water hole. The town's population is approximately 4600. The postcode is 5352


Prussian immigrants who arrived with Pastor Gotthard Fritzsche founded the village of Bethanien in 1842, the first settlement in the vicinity of today's Tanunda. One year later, Prussians relocating from Klemzig on the Torrens River, where they had settled upon immigrating in 1838 with Pastor August Kavel, came to the Barossa Valley and founded the village of Langmeil. Their new community bore the name of a Prussian town near Zullichau, from where the settlers had originated; it is now a Polish village known as Okunin. Sometime later, another village was founded and named Tanunda. Due to anti-German sentiments, both Langmeil and Bethanien were renamed during the Great War to Bilyara and Bethany respectively, although Bilyara reverted to Langmeil in 1975. As development of the Tanunda area continued, the villages of Langmeil and Tanunda were joined. Today the township is simply called Tanunda.


Tanunda and the Barossa Valley comprise one of Australia's premier wine-growing areas, and the town is surrounded by vineyards. One such vineyard, Turkey Flat, is home to Shiraz vines that were planted in 1847 and are believed to be the world's oldest continually producing commercial vineyard that has been authenticated.[3]


The German heritage of Tanunda is still present today. The town has a male choir the Tanunda Liedertafel, the history of which is thought to date back to 1850.[citation needed] There is also a Kegel (bowling) club. The Tanunda Town Band celebrated 150 years as a band in 2007 and is the oldest brass band in the Southern Hemisphere.[4][5] Tanunda served as the launching point for the Nazi party’s effort to expand in Australia in the 1930s.[6]


Historically, Tanunda (and Adelaide) was the home to a number of the earliest South Australian newspapers that were printed primarily in German. German newspapers were set up by early settlers, but many were forced to close or merge due to labour shortages caused by the Victorian gold rush of the 1850s-1860s.

  • Deutsche Zeitung für Süd-Australien (1851)
  • Süd Australische Zeitung (1860–1874) - Tanunda/Adelaide
  • Australisches Unterhaltungsblatt (1862-1916) - a supplement to the Süd Australische Zeitung and Australische Zeitung
  • Tanunda Deutsche Zeitung (1863-1869) - later renamed Australische Deutsche Zeitung
  • Australische Deutsche Zeitung (1870-1874) - Tanunda/Adelaide: a Melbourne edition of the newspaper was also printed 1870–1872.
  • Australische Zeitung (1875–1916) - Tanunda/Adelaide: formed by the merger of Süd Australische Zeitung, and Australische Deutsche Zeitung; closed due to WWI
  • Australische Zeitung (1927-1929) - attempted revival

Two weekly English-language newspapers served the area:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Tanunda (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 4 May 2018. Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ "Property Location Browser (Search: Tanunda, LOCB)". Government of South Australia. Retrieved 5 February 2016.
  3. ^ G. Harding "A Wine Miscellany" p. 20, Clarkson Potter Publishing, New York 2005 ISBN 0307346358
  4. ^ "Tanunda Town Band - About Us". Tanunda Town Band. Retrieved 26 September 2014.
  5. ^ "Barossa Vintage Festival 2011". Postcards SA. Channel 9 South Australia. Retrieved 26 September 2014.
  6. ^ "Happy birthday, Hitler: how Australia's Nazis got away with 'the whole rotten show'". the Guardian. 4 February 2022. Retrieved 5 February 2022.