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Indigenous and cultural tourism is the heartbeat of South Australia, helping folks forge a deeper connection with their environment and discover the ties that unite them with this land.

Founder of Kool Tours and proud Ngarrindjeri elder Mark Koolmatrie, and his family, had concerns around the misrepresentation of South Australia’s history and the stories of their ancestors being twisted and distorted. And so Kool Tours emerged onto the scene in 2019, with a passionate desire to reclaim and preserve the true narrative of our state’s cultural heritage.

Image Credit :: Jonathan van der Knapp


You’re in for a ripper of a time at Kool Tours, with their diverse range of experiences. Each tour is a totally unique celebration, highlighting different spots in South Australia that hold deep significance in Indigenous culture.

From discovering bush foods and medicines on the Yundi Nature Trail, to unravelling the Nurrunderi creation story on the Ratalang Ngarrindjeri Tour in Port Elliot, and even delving into the deep connection with Kondoli — The Whale Journey Across Granite Island; the opportunities for discovery are endless.

Image Credit :: Jonathan van der Knapp

Image Credit :: Jonathan van der Knapp


Picture this: You’re walking the stunning Gemtree Eco Trail, surrounded by the natural beauty of the land. And who’s your guide on the Wuldi Cultural Experience? None other than Mark himself, ready to share ancient stories passed down to him from generations before. Anecdotes not just about the land you’re walking on, but also about our responsibility to care for it, the waters and the entire ecosystem.

During your journey, you’ll have the chance to hunt through the world of native ingredients and their cultural importance. The coastal rosemary is introduced in the smoking ceremony as a way of fostering a connection to Country and then later in bush tucker — which participants get to sample!

You’ll gain insight into the healing properties of plants and herbs passed down through tens of thousands of years, learn about personal stories that establish a deep connection to the land, and explore the Dreamtime cosmology, uncovering the spiritual aspects of Indigenous culture.

And as your trail adventure winds down, you can kick back with a chat, savour the aforementioned bush tucker, and even sip on some Gemtree Biodynamic Wine, all while basking in the natural beauty of the Eco Trail. It’s a journey you won’t want to miss.


A nugget of wisdom you’ll walk away with after a Kool Tour, is Mark’s own insight into the Ngartji System.

“It’s about finding that plant, that animal, that bird, that insect — whatever it is — that you connect with through something called our Miwi. A gut feeling.”

And what’s seriously cool is how your Ngartji can form a direct connection between you and the land. When we find our unique connection to an aspect of our environment, it’s like a puzzle piece clicking into place. Taking care of what deeply resonates with us creates sustainability.

Image Credit :: Jonathan van der Knapp

“If we all nurtured and cared for our own piece of land, or a species, or a plant, it would create ripples that extend far and wide, beyond our imaginations,” says Mark.

“We’re not just preserving our own backyard; we’re looking out for the whole planet. The system is not only about finding a personal tie to Country; it’s about our role in safeguarding the tapestry of Indigenous life.


When you wrap up a Kool Tour, it’s not just about heading home with your memories; it’s about taking something deeper with you. The profound connection to the land and its incredible stories stick with you, giving you a fresh appreciation for Indigenous culture and an understanding of South Australia’s history. And Mark asks you to pass on the magic! After all, sharing the stories keeps them alive and strong for generations to come.

We’re spoiled to have Kool Tours as a cultural treasure-trove in South Australia. Booking an experience is a breeze — just keep in mind that the Kool Tours schedule can change seasonally, so the website is best for updates and bookings. Happy adventuring!




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