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Adelaide, the capital of South Australia, is a vibrant city with plenty to offer. From world-class museums and art galleries to stunning botanical gardens and lively nightlife districts, there’s something for everyone in Adelaide.
Besides, the city is surrounded by some of Australia’s most beautiful gardens, so there’s always something to see and do nearby.
I spent 3 days in Adelaide during my road trip in South Australia and it is absolutely an amazing city with so many beautiful places to discover. In this article, I will share the 16 best things to do in Adelaide.
How You Can Get Around Adelaide:
Adelaide is a relatively small city, and it’s easy to get around by foot or public transport. The city’s public transport system operates a range of buses, trains, and trams.
However the easiest way to get around the city is by car as you might want to explore some places just outside the city centre such as Hahndorf or The vineyard of Barossa.
If you’re planning on doing a lot of sightseeing, I recommend purchasing a City Pass. This pass allows you to travel on all of Adelaide’s public transport systems for a period of 24 or 48 hours. It’s an excellent way to save money and make the most of your time here.
Best time to visit Adelaide
The best time to visit Adelaide is during the spring or autumn months. This is when the weather is at its most pleasant, and when you can enjoy all that the city has to offer. However, if you’re interested in attending one of Adelaide’s famous festivals, then the summer months are also a great time to visit.
Whatever time of year you visit, Adelaide is an all-year round destination with many activities in every season. I went in July, which is winter and the weather was chilly but perfect temperatures to explore all the amazing places around the city and even to do some ice-skating in Glenelg.
Where to stay in Adelaide
There are plenty of great places if you are looking for where to stay in Adelaide. I stayed 1 night at Big4 Caravan Park in Glenelg, which is right at the beach, and 2 nights in the city centre so I could easily explore all the highlights of Adelaide.
You can find anything from caravan park & hostels to mid-range and luxury hotels in the city, I listed below some great options that you might consider for your stay in Adelaide.
BIG4 West Beach Parks is a 4-star caravan park located on the beachfront of Adelaide. It offers a wide range of accommodation options, including cabins, caravans, and camping sites.
The park is well equipped with various facilities, including a swimming pool, playground, and BBQ area. It’s also located close to a range of shops and restaurants, making it the perfect choice for those looking for a family-friendly stay in Adelaide.
Prices are AU$ 40/night
ibis Adelaide is a 3-star hotel located near 122 Grenfell St. It offers a buffet breakfast, WIFI, and room service with a wide variety of food. The ibis Adelaide is a dependable, well-equipped venue for events and business meetings.
With its proximity to the Adelaide CBD and excellent facilities, the ibis is a great choice for those looking for a quality, affordable stay in Adelaide.
Prices are AU$ 125/night
Sofitel Adelaida is a luxurious 5-star hotel located in the heart of Adelaide. It’s home to a wide variety of facilities, including a swimming pool, spa, and gym. It’s located in the city’s heart, and it features a range of excellent facilities.
This luxury hotel offers a great experience for both business and leisure travelers. Also, the Sofitel Adelaide is home to some of the best restaurants in the city. With its perfect location and world-class facilities, the Sofitel is a great choice for those looking for a luxurious stay in Adelaide.
Prices start from AU$ 300/night
16 amazing Things to do in Adelaide
Visit the Adelaide State Library
The State Library of South Australia is one of the most architecturally impressive libraries in the country. It’s home to a vast collection of books, manuscripts, and other historical documents, as well as a number of excellent exhibition spaces.
Furthermore, the library has a beautiful garden courtyard perfect for a relaxing break. The State Library is open every day but on some public holidays the opening hours may be different, so make sure to check on that before you visit the State Library in Adelaide.
The entrance to the Library is free although some areas were closed due to COVID. I spent around an hour in the Library photographing the beauty of this historic building.
BOOK: With this 3-hour photography workshop you learn more about the historic areas and how to develop your photography skills
Enjoy some wine tasting at the National wine museum
The National Wine Museum is the perfect place to learn about the history and culture of wine production in Australia or to taste some of the best wines of Australia.
The museum has several interactive exhibits and a tasting room where you can try some of the best wines from South Australia. Besides, the museum is located next to the Botanic Gardens, so you can enjoy some beautiful walks before or after your visit to the National Wine Museum.
BOOK: You can join a guided tour around Adelaide that includes a visit to the National Wine Museum
Stroll Along with The Adelaide Central Market
I really love visiting markets in a city because you immerse the authenticity of the locals and its history. The Adelaide Central Market was definitely a great market to stroll along and it is one of Australia’s oldest and most popular markets in Australia.
It’s home to a huge variety of fresh produce, as well as a great selection of food stalls and restaurants. The avocados were soo big and fruits are much cheaper than in the supermarket.
If you plan to visit the Adelaide Central Market have a look at the website for the latest opening hours. Usually, the Market is open from Tuesday till Saturday.
BOOK: You can also visit the Market with the knowledge of a local during this guided market tour
Shop At The Rundle Mall
The Rundle Mall is the most popular shopping district in Adelaide. It’s home to a huge range of retail outlets, from high-end fashion stores to souvenir shops.
When I came into this mall it felt like I was shopping in the malls of Bangkok and Singapore as every floor had its category. The basement floor contains all the ‘fake’ fashion brands and the higher floors are restaurants and entertainment.
The mall is open every day but can be closed on public holidays.
READ ALSO: The perfect 3-day Singapore itinerary
Discover Some Beautiful Street Art And Murals
If you have read some previous blog posts about Perth or Melbourne you could expect that this was going to be in this Adelaide Guide. Murals and Street Art are always on my list when I visit a city and also in Adelaide I found some beautiful ones.
The best places to find them are in the Rundle Mall, around Victoria Square, and the East End district. So be sure to take a walk around these areas and enjoy the vibrant artwork on display.
Moreover, the street art in Adelaide is constantly changing, so there’s always something new to see.
Walk Through The Beautiful Adelaide Botanic Garden
The Adelaide Botanic Gardens are one of Australia’s most beautiful botanical gardens. It’s home to a wide variety of plants, flowers, and trees, as well as several fascinating exhibition spaces.
I really loved wandering around the gardens as they are so beautiful and photogenic. The gardens are also divided into different areas with a theme in every area.
Visit The Famous Penfold Winery
The Penfold Winery is one of the most famous wineries in Australia and is only a few minutes from the city center. It’s home to a wide variety of the best wines in South Australia and very obvious that I did a tasting here with Nao.
We tried 6 different of their premium wines for only AU$15 and if you are hungry, they serve great food and snacks as well.
The winery is open from Monday to Friday, so be sure to visit it during your stay in Adelaide.
Enjoy Nature In The Morialta Conservation Park And Visit The Giants Cave
The Morialta Conservation Park is a beautiful nature reserve located just outside Adelaide. It’s home to a wide variety of wildlife, as well as some magnificent scenery.
It can be very crowded on school holidays and weekends as many families and residents come here to relax and hike. However, the Giants Cave is located in the park, and it’s well worth a visit with some awesome views over the Morialta Conservation Park and you can easily follow the Morialta waterfall walk towards the stunning falls.
The entrance is free and the park is open every day, although the gates are closed for vehicles during nighttime.
Explore The Morialta Falls
The Morialta Conservation Park has many walking trails with different sights and waterfalls. I decided to visit the Morialta Falls on the First Falls Loop as they are spectacular and very easy to reach.
They’re definitely worth a visit if you’re interested in nature and wildlife, however, if you have more time in the park I also recommend walking Second Falls Loop.
Enjoy Some Great Beers At The Belgian Beer Cafe
The Belgian Beer Cafe is a popular bar located in the heart of Adelaide. They have a wide variety of Belgian beers, as well as a great selection of food.
My visit to the Belgian Beer Cafe was unexpected as I accidentally met a guy from my hometown in Belgium so it was very obvious to have a drink and chat at this place.
Visit The Pitoresque Town Of Hahndorf
Distance: 25km – 30min.
Hahndorf is a beautiful German settlement located in the Adelaide Hills but I can highly recommend visiting this beautiful town as I really enjoyed my time in Hahndorf because it reminded me of the Christmas Markets that I visited in Dusseldorf and Cologne.
A day trip to Hahndorf is perfect if you want to discover some German influences and learn more about the history of the oldest German settlement in Australia.
The best way to explore Hahndorf is by walking as you probably will stop at every souvenir shop and hot dog stall.
Discover The Garden Island Shipwreck Graveyard
The Garden Island Shipwreck Graveyard is a fascinating place just outside Adelaide. It’s home to the remains of many shipwrecks, as well as several interesting historical displays.
The graveyard is located in a beautiful natural setting, so it’s well worth a visit and you can do even a Kayak tour around the wrecks. Although it was too cold when I was there, I think it can be really fun.
Explore The Beach Vibes Of Glenelg
Glenelg is a beautiful beach town located just outside the city with a nice vibe and many shops, restaurants, and attractions. The best way to explore the town is on foot, so be sure to take a walk through its narrow streets during your visit.
Although Glenelg is a beach town, I went there during winter time (July) and there was a Winter Festival with food stalls, a beer garden, and even ice skating.
Can you imagine how it would be in summer?
Watch The City From The Amazing Mount Osmond Lookout
Mount Osmond Lookout is a beautiful lookout located just outside of Adelaide. It provides stunning views of the city and its surroundings. The lookout is easily accessible and the best time to go there is at sunset.
Don’t forget to bring your camera like I did as the views are just amazing! And thanks to my Instagram buddy Davishphoto for using her images.
Photo credit: @Davishphoto
Admire A Pink Lake At Bumbunga Lake
Distance: 135km – 1h 30min.
Let’s say it is not really in the city but if you have some time during your visit to make a day trip then a visit to Bumbunga Lake is definitely worth it and also perfect to combine with a visit to the Barossa Valley.
I came across the lake when I was driving from Adelaide to Coober Pedy. So if you plan to make a beautiful road trip to Alice Springs or Uluru, make sure you stop at Lake Bumbunga.
READ ALSO: 9 Awesome Things To Do In Coober Pedy
Packed full of history, culture, and natural beauty, Adelaide is a city that should not be missed. With its diverse range of attractions and excellent facilities it is the perfect destination for those looking for an adventure-filled holiday.
So be sure to add it to your list of places to visit in the near future. You won’t regret it.
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Explore the best things to do in Adelaide with my favorite travel apps
To plan my adventures, I use these FREE websites and apps as they provide the best information, and the best deals, and they are user-friendly.
PICTURES AND EDITING
All the pictures on this page are made and owned by me. If you are interested in some pictures to use for your magazine, website, blog, or any other purpose, just send me an email and we’ll figure it out.
Do you like the edits? My Presets will be online soon so you can edit your pictures in just one click!
The camera gear I used for this trip
I never go out without my camera and many people ask me which gear I use. So to make it quite easy, I listed all the gear I used for this trip below.
Most of the time, I travel with the Sony A7III and the Sony 24-105mm/f4 as my primary lens but depending on the location, I change to another setup. However, I love the Tamron 17-28 to shoot in the big cities.