When we think about Australia our minds usually conjure up images of the Sydney Opera House and the beaches of Byron Bay. Little do many of us know that we are doing a great injustice to some of the lesser-visited parts of Australia.
Adelaide is without a doubt Australia’s best kept secret. It has pristine beaches, gorgeous vineyards, and a thriving nightlife, but the best thing about it is that it’s free from the huge crowds that flock to Sydney and Melbourne. Although Adelaide is home to over a million people, it never feels too hectic or chaotic and there are plenty of green spaces. Instead, it is the perfect place to wile away the hours on the beach or with a glass of world-class wine.
With so much space to move around and so much beauty to see, it’s a shame that people overlook South Australia’s capital. But, it means you will get it all to yourself.
Here is why we love Adelaide and why you should love it too!
1. Adelaide Has Some of the Best Beaches in Australia
It is an undisputed fact that the beaches in Adelaide are out of this world. Depending on what kind of atmosphere you are looking for, there is a range of beaches to choose from.
If you’re looking for somewhere lively where you can meet people and mingle, head to Glenelg Beach. If you are more interested in finding a photogenic spot you can snap for your Instagram, then Port Willunga is a better choice. Elsewhere you will find ideal beaches for swimming or surfing, all of which are bathed in a warm glow.
2. Eating Out on Jetty Road
Jetty Road is one of the main commercial areas in Adelaide and is jam-packed with bars, restaurants and shops. What’s most important, you will also be able to find the best accommodation in Adelaide around here – perfect if you’re looking to shack up in a swanky hotel. When hunger strikes there are all kinds of eateries on offer, from high-end brasseries, to budget spots for backpackers.
3. The Central Market Has All the Food You Could Ever Want
Adelaide’s Central Market is a haven for foodies looking to get their fix. The market itself is almost 150 years old – which is ancient by Australian standards – and is historically fascinating in itself. But it’s inside where the magic happens. Here, you will find food stands from all over the world as well as a plethora of fresh produce, including fish, vegetables, and flowers.
4. Adelaide is the Wine Capital of Australia
Just an hour out of the city centre of Adelaide are some of the country’s most incredible wineries. Visitors are spoilt for choice when it comes to the various wine regions and can choose between Barossa Valley, Mclaren Vale, Clare Valley and the Adelaide Hills. Take a tour of the winery and treat yourself to a glass or two of mouth-watering shiraz. Even if you don’t like wine, the landscapes alone are enough to merit a trip to Adelaide’s wine country.
5. Kangaroo Island is Nearby and it’s Amazing
Just as you would expect from somewhere called Kangaroo Island, this wonderful little land mass is filled with kangaroos! But, the wildlife is a lot more diverse than just these hoppy guys. The island is also home to seals, wombats, wallabies, koalas and more! With just 4,500 people, the animals of Kangaroo Island dominate, making it a unique and exciting experience – especially for those who aren’t used to seeing kangaroos every day.
6. You Can Get Your History Fix at the South Australian Museum
If you are looking for a bit of culture during your vacation in Adelaide, head over to the South Australian Museum. The collections at this much-loved museum include fossils, Aboriginal artefacts, and precious stones among numerous other things. It makes for a great day out and there are plenty of child-friendly areas to keep your kids engaged while you’re there. Best of all, entry to the museum is completely free!
7. You Can Go Kayaking with Dolphins and Swimming with Sea Lions
Nothing beats getting up close and personal with the ocean’s most lovable creatures. Kayaking with dolphins is a breath-taking experience that lets you admire Adelaide’s stunning nature whilst getting friendly with the local dolphins. Dolphin tours take paddlers through mangroves and along the Ships Graveyard Maritime Heritage Trail in search of these majestic animals. Those in search of sea lions will be kitted out with a snorkel before jumping into the crystal clear waters of Seal Cove. If you have a go pro or a waterproof camera, make sure you take it along, as these are experiences you are going to want to remember forever.
8. WOMADelaide Takes Place Every Year
WOMAD festival (World of Music, Arts and Dance) is a lively festival that takes place in Botanic Park, Adelaide every year. Under the warmth of the South Australian sun, music-lovers and spiritual types from all over the world come together to enjoy the delights of WOMAD festival. All over the enormous venue are music stages, art installations, healing villages, food trucks, and more. There are also a handful of talks about the environment and other pressing matters at the aptly named “Speaker’s Corner”.
9. Adelaide is Much Cheaper Than Melbourne and Sydney
Australia can be a struggle for travellers on a budget. Beers, food, accommodation – it all adds up. Adelaide is a godsend for people who don’t have too much cash to splash. That is not to say the city is cheap, but it is certainly less expensive than Melbourne or Sydney. In fact, rent in Adelaide is around 50% cheaper than in Sydney – to get an idea of the difference! With the general cost of things noticeably lower, you’ll find yourself with more money for beach beers and activities. Win-win!