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Adelaide is often referred to as the ‘City of Churches’, which is partly why Aussies who don’t live there dismiss it as boring. Yes, there is a fair bit of religious architecture like Holy Trinity Church, but there are also plenty of pubs, clubs and places of sporting worship (Adelaide Oval) for those who like to play instead of pray!
Throw in the fact that the Adelaide Festival is the second-largest fringe festival in the world, and you soon realise you’re in a city that simply enjoys thinking a little differently to the rest of the country. With the Barossa Valley on its doorstep, Adelaide is the wine capital of Australia. Visit the National Wine Centre to find out why, then spend the rest of the time feeling completely blissed!
Adelaide’s Top 10
10. Montefiore Hill Situated in northern Adelaide, this hill offers great city views. See the lights twinkle at night.
5. Rundle Mall One for the ladies. This pedestrian-only shopping strip is home to over 800 shops.
9. Rundle Lantern A carbon neutral lightshow takes place every night from dusk until midnight.
4. Glenelg This historic beachside suburb is easy to reach by tram. Take a walk on the jetty when you get there.
8. Haigh’s Chocolate Factory A tour of one of Australia’s best chocolate makers ends with free samples. Yum!
3. Bradman Collection Museum Cricket fans will be hit for six by this impressive collection of memorabilia relating to ‘The Don’. Non-cricket fans will be pleasantly mystified.
7. Adelaide Central Market Offers a unique shopping experience in the centre of the city. Go for fresh produce and various goods, and take a tour to uncover the market’s secrets.
2. Adelaide Botanic Gardens Adelaide is hardly full of hustle and bustle, but this is still a pleasant spot to sit and relax.
6. Bicentennial Conservatory The largest single-span conservatory in the southern hemisphere (take that, Sydney!). Channel your inner Tarzan as you stand amongst full-size rainforest trees.
1. Coopers Brewery Tour the last remaining large-scale family-owned brewery in Australia. You may as well have a try after all that walking!
- Ayres House - One of the city's most historic homes, home of Sir Henry Ayres.
- Light Square - A memorial to the man who designed the layout of Adelaide.
- Old Gaol - It is 170 years old, with regular weekend tours and even ghost walks.
- National Soldiers' War Memorial - A poignant tribute to the city's fallen heroes.
- Scots Church - Renowned for its beautiful stained-glass windows.
Adelaide Art & Culture
- Tandanya Complex - The centre for aboriginal art and culture with daily performances.
- Adelaide Festival Centre - A striking music, art and theatre centre.
- Art Gallery of Australia - The most impressive collection of 19th-century art.
- South Australia Museum - Features a boomerang said to be 10,000 years old.
- Bradman Collection - About 150 items of memorabilia from the legendary cricketer.
- Rundle Mall - More than 600 stores to choose from, and everything you need.
- Harbour Town - West of the city centre has a terrific array of shopping outlets.
- Parkside - Factory outlets and seconds’ warehouses and clearance stores.
- Adelaide Central Market - A year-round market community and a fun place to visit.
- City Cross Shopping Centre - A large centre with some trendy boutiques.
Gay & Lesbian Adelaide
- The Feast Festival - Every November, not just in Adelaide but throughout Australia.
- Rundle and Gouger Streets - Both are well known for their gay restaurants.
- Blaze - The gay and lesbian newspaper of South Australia.
- The Mars Bar - A very popular gay club with weekend drag shows.
- Edinburgh Castle Hotel – A relaxed feel, with Thursday's top DJ performance.
- The Botanic Gardens - A popular attraction with many tropical plants.
- H.M.S. Buffalo - A replica of the ship that brought the first settlers to Adelaide.
- Bonython Park - The largest park in the city, a wonderful place for a stroll.
- Cleland Wildlife Park - A multi-award-winning park has more than 130 species.
- Dolphin Sanctuary - Take a kayak to see the dolphins up close.
- North Parklands – A picturesque golf course just minutes from the city centre.
- The Adelaide Oval - Watch cricket, Aussie rules football, rugby and soccer.
- Adelaide Sailing Club - Try out some sailing courses or just relax and watch.
- Memorial Drive Tennis Club (MDTC) - Improve your game at the best facilities.
- Hindmarsh Stadium - The home of Adelaide United Football Club.
This Adelaide Fringe Festival runs from late February to March and includes dance, comedy, theatre and much more. Laugh, play and be generally very merry.
WOMAD stands for World of Music, Arts and Dance and attracts audiences and artists from all over the world every March.
Enormously popular among rev heads, the Clipsal 500 roars into town in mid-March. Street parties and huge concerts add to the thrill.
The Adelaide Cabaret Festival is the most comprehensive anywhere and takes place every June.
Taking place in September, the Royal Adelaide Show is where the country meets the city. Family fun ensues, with everything from rides to barn animals and wine tastings to fashion shows.
When To Go
The autumn months from March to May are a great time to visit – warm temperatures but no extreme heat.
December to February can get seriously hot. Although the summer average is a balmy 28ºC (82ºF), heat waves when the mercury climbs above 37.5ºC (100ºF) for days on end are not uncommon.
June, July and August are the wettest months, but since South Australia is the driest state in the country, that’s not saying much!
Taking the tram is a great way to get around. It’s also free if you just use it in the heart of the city!
To explore all Adelaide’s nooks and crannies, take advantage of the city’s free bicycle hire.
Take a bus or train to explore further afield.
Attractions In Adelaide
With a population that hovers around the 1.1 million mark, Adelaide is the capital city of South Australia. On the coast of the Southern Ocean, inhabitants of the city also have the good fortune of being within the beautiful Adelaide Plains, Mount Lofty mountains and River Torrens. Fabulous scenery surrounds the city, with several large national parks in close proximity. The city has a reputation as a hub of education, defense technology and research and was the original home of Rupert Murdoch and his media giant, News Corporation. A classic and intentional grid layout, myriad green space, tidy municipal squares and convivial residents make Adelaide an attractive destination in Australia.
The Art Gallery of South Australia is one of the most important in the country, with a wonderful permanent collection of aboriginal and colonial art. On North Terrace Street, the Gallery is adjacent to a number of other major landmarks in the city. They include the Adelaide Park Lands, a colossal space three times the size of Central Park.
Made up of 29 parks, the Park Lands provide enough attractions for two or three days. In addition to a golf course, race course and cricket oval, the main sites include several majestic gardens.
Other vital stops on North Terrace include the South Australian Museum, SKYCITY Adelaide Casino, inside a historic railway station, and National War Memorial.
The East End district of the city is a popular spot for events and festivals. Major draws here run from Rymill Park, the Adelaide Botanic Gardens and the National Wine Centre of Australia. The leader in New World wine production, no trip to Australia would be complete without a wine tour. In addition to the Wine Centre, the Adelaide area has a legion of vineyards in idyllic Barossa Valley.
Home to a veritable who's who of Down Under vintages, from Penfolds to Torbreck, Wolf Blass to Jacob's Creek, Barossa Valley is one of the preeminent wine tour destinations in the world. All within a cork's throw of downtown Adelaide.
With a mild Mediterranean climate, the greater Adelaide area has rainy winters and hot, dry summers.
- Winter (June to August) 10-19°C
- Spring (September to November) 13-27°C
- Summer (December to February) 18-31°C
- Fall (March to May) 13-29°C
Famous for a lively arts scene, Adelaide is a terrific destination for festival enthusiasts. The Festival of Arts, without hyperbole, is the most significant arts event in Australia. Held every two years in March, the festival hosts a multitude of events that range from performance art, opera, dance, classical music, contemporary music and cabaret.
WOMADelaide is a popular dance and music festival held every year in Botanic Park. The Adelaide incarnation of the World of Music, Arts and Dance (WOMAD) scene, seeks to join acts from various schools and ethnic backgrounds, all at the same time and place.
Tasting Australia is a wine and food festival beloved by gourmets all over the world. The biannual culinary celebration draws scores of hungry revellers to the myriad stalls in Elder Park, on the River Torrens.
Other notable events include FEAST, a prominent queer culture festival, and the Royal Adelaide Show, a massive agricultural state fair held every September at the Showgrounds in the suburb of Wayville.
84 hotels in Adelaide, AU
Providing sophisticated accommodations in central location, Hotel Grand Chancellor Adelaide On Hindley makes for an ideal base for discerning travellers in the South Australia capital. The boutique... More
Oaks Embassy Hotel Adelaide offers chic and contemporary accommodations for discerning business and leisure travellers while in the heart of Adelaide. This hotel is ideally located near Adelaide... More
Oaks Horizons Hotel Adelaide greets sophisticated holidaymakers with elegantly furnished apartments nestled in a convenient city centre location. While in Adelaide, tourists can join events at... More
Cosy and strategically located, the accommodations at Hostel 109 make for ideal starting point for travellers in this culture-rich South Australia capital. Vacationers in Adelaide can peruse... More
The Crowne Plaza Hotel Adelaide is located right at the centre of the city's busy business district within walking distance of Adelaide's many attractions including Adelaide Botanic Gardens and... More
Adelaide Meridien Hotel & Apartments welcomes travellers to a comfortable retreat ideally situated in the heart of trendy North Adelaide. Guests at this hotel can stop by Royal Adelaide Zoo or... More
Presenting quality accommodation and a range of convenient services, Miller Apartments Adelaide is an ideal choice for overnight or longer stays. It is within walking distance from Adelaide's main... More
Business and leisure travellers in the capital of South Australia find ideal base at the tasteful accommodations of centrally located Chifley On South Terrace Hotel Adelaide. Tourists at this... More
Adabco Boutique Hotel Adelaide welcomes travellers to contemporary accommodations set in a historic Venetian Gothic-style building conveniently located near the heart of the city. The posh property... More