Big plans for annual Whyalla event


SPECTACULAR: More people will get the chance to see the amazing cuttlefish at this year's CuttleFest. Pictrure: Carl Charter

Whyalla’s CuttleFest continues to grow with some exciting new features on the table for 2019.

Along with an increase in supervised tours from the Stony Point cuttlefish aggregation site, there will be host of events, activities, art, information sessions and an inaugural opening ceremony on June 1 at the Whyalla foreshore.

The City of Whyalla is working with Experiencing Marine Sanctuaries (EMS), Natural Resources Eyre Peninsula (NREP), Department for Environment and Water (DEW) marine parks, South Australia Tourism Commission (SATC), Eyre Peninsula dive operators and the community to put together a big program for this year’s event between June and August.

The Giant Australian Cuttlefish (Sepia apama which is part of the cephalopod family) aggregate into the marine sanctuary rocky areas off the Whyalla coast during June, July and August to mate and lay their eggs. It is the only known location this happens in the world, making it an amazingly unique experience in the shallow waters off our coast.

A highlight of Cuttlefest remains the EMS supervised snorkel tours off Stony Point. Whyalla Visitor Centre Team leader, and qualified diver, Teresa Coles says the tours are not only spectacular, they are very easy and accessible for most people with snorkelling the easiest way to witness this natural phenomenon.

 “People are pleasantly surprised how easy it is to get into the water and then blown away by the sight of these amazing creatures as they put on their spectacular colour displays during mating,” Teresa said.

“Cuttlefest is helping make it even easier for people to experience this incredible event while helping us to further understand and protect these cuttlefish.

“By working with local operators, EMS and NREP, we are not only providing a platform for people to see these creatures, we are helping build a solid core of knowledge and understanding that is going to assist in protecting this species and allow it to flourish in our waters.”


FAMILY ORIENTATED: The Thomson family of Whyalla after a Cuttlefest dive last year.

Much of this knowledge will be passed on through the CuttleFest events around Whyalla. The Curious Cuttles night returns again this year, after being booked out last year, while displays and virtual reality experiences in venues like the library and Council offices will again be a feature.

Council is also working hard to have new change rooms finished at the Stony Point dive site in time for this year’s cuttlefish season. New toilets and upgrades to the site were completed last year with both programs jointly funded by Council and the Eyre Peninsula Natural Resources Management Board.  

“These initiatives and the infrastructure being established at Stony Point and around Whyalla is not only helping to build Cuttlefest and the whole cuttlefish experience, it is telling the world we are serious about looking after these creatures,” Teresa said.

The full program of events for Cuttlefest 2019 will be released in May. Bookings are, however, now being taken for the safe EMS supervised dives with a 50% discount being offered for Whyalla and Eyre Peninsula residents. EMS provides warm 7mm wetsuits, safety equipment and qualified guides for a safe and supervised snorkel tour.

The “Community Guided Dives” are being held on June 29-30 and July 6-9. EMS is also co-ordinating with schools to run dives for students during July. Corporate/VIP snorkels will be June 24-28.

For more information go to the EMS site or contact the Whyalla Visitor Information Centre on 1800 088 589.



Full price adults - $99

Full price kids - $49.50

Full price family – 2 adults and two kids - $249


Promotional code: EARLYBIRD2019

Save 25% (save $24.75) Pay only $74.25

Number of tickets – 150


Promotional code: OWNGEAR2019

Save 75% (save $74.25). Bring your own wetsuit and snorkel gear and pay only $24.75

Number of tickets – unlimited. Expires May 31,2019


Promotional code: EPLOCAL2019 (active)

Save 50% Eyre Peninsula Locals pay only $49.50 (save $49.50).

Number of tickets – 200

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