Fun things to do in Adelaide

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Adelaide

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    Adelaide's XMAS PAGEANT

    by balhannah Updated Mar 28, 2014

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    ONE OF THE WORLD'S GREATEST PAGEANTS.

    Its held on the 2nd Saturday in November, each year.

    The Pageant began in 1933, when Sir Edward Hayward who was the owner of John Martins Store, decided to do something to cheer people up after the depression. In these early years, it was all the staff from John Martins that were in the pageant. It started with 8 floats and 4 bands, now has 72 sets and still growing.
    In 1983, just before the 50th Pageant, he passed away.

    You need to come early to get a good position in the streets as this is a very popular event, with a record of 500,000 people in one year. The route is usually put in the Advertiser newspaper.
    The website is excellent and gives you all the details you need.

    THIS IS A MUST SEE, IT IS EXCELLENT, I KNOW, I HAVE SEEN IT MANY TIMES.

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    ADELAIDE INFORMATION CENTRE

    by balhannah Updated Mar 27, 2014

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    Adelaides Tourist Information centre is located in Rundle Mall.
    There are plenty of volunteers who will assist you with directions, brochures, maps and holiday suggestions.

    To make sure you make the most of your stay, pick up one of the Heritage walk brochures and follow the map.

    I think the following available for FREE is excellent.

    Free Wheelchair and Pusher hire is available.

    First Steps in Adelaide, a free orientation walk of the City, departs from the Adelaide Visitor Information Centre at 9.30am Monday to Friday (excluding Public Holidays).

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    Spend a day in Port Adelaide

    by wabat Written Dec 25, 2013

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    Text below is summary of my Port Adelaide page introduction

    I was of two minds as to whether or not to create a separate page for Port Adelaide.

    Firstly, Port Adelaide is a suburb of Adelaide situated about 20 minutes drive to the north-west of the city centre and, secondly I wasn’t sure that there was a lot to write about it – and what there was to say could be covered in a few tips on this page.

    On reflection, there is much to see and do here and I would certainly recommend a full day. Indeed, if you visit Adelaide a visit to the Port is a must do – if only to visit the National Railway Museum which I rank as one of the best railway museums in the world – and yes I am a railway buff!

    In addition to the Railway Museum the Maritime Museum is also very worthy a visit. Port Adelaide is also home to the South Australian Aviation Museum which, while not holding any special interest for me, may be of interest to some readers.

    One of the best things to do in Port Adelaide is to have a stroll around the streets and take in some of the finest historic colonial and Victorian buildings in South Australia. Oh, if only the walls could talk – imagine some of the stories you might here in this historic maritime port.

    South Australia was established as a State in 1836 and Port Adelaide, shortly thereafter in 1840 from which time it played an integral role in the colonial development of the State. The area’s first migrants had to wade through the mosquito infected mud swamps of nearby “Port Misery” until facilities were built at Port Adelaide.

    Writer T. Horton James wrote of the original port thus:

    “This is Port Adelaide! Port Misery would be a better name; for nothing in any other part of the world can surpass it in every thing that is wretched and inconvenient”.

    By the 1870s Port Adelaide was a thriving port with wharves, storehouses, chandlers, sail makers, shipping offices and homes as good as any in Australia. A significant number of these early buildings remain today and are likely to remain as in May 1982, a sizeable part of the town centre was declared a State Heritage Area.

    Drop into the tourist office (open 7 days per week except Christmas day) and pick up its “Walk the Port Brochure” and go for a stroll. The three museums I have mentioned above are along the walk. If you just walk you can complete the walk in about an hour and a half. Fit in a couple of hours for two of the museums and a few additional stops and there you have the makings of a very enjoyable day. Unless otherwise indicated all my tips on my Port Adelaide page are related to sites along the “Walk the Port” walk though for those not following the walk I have included full addresses and other relevant details in my tips.

    As one might expect of a port area there is almost literally a pub of every corner and I also refer to a number of these establishments in my Port Adelaide tips. Indeed the council has been very thoughtful (unwittingly so, I assure you) and pre-prepared a pub-crawl for those interested. It’s perhaps best if you ask for a copy of the “Heritage Pub Trail” at the tourist office rather than the “pub crawl guide”!

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    The Adelaide Oval

    by IreneMcKay Updated Jul 16, 2013

    My husband loves sport, especially football, but he is also an avid cricket fan, so we had to visit the Adelaide Oval. The ground was established in 1871. It is situated in the parklands between the city centre and North Adelaide. It is home to the South Australian Redbacks, the Adelaide Strikers and the South Australian Cricket Association. The Adelaide Oval has a seating capacity of 36,000.

    It is an attractive ground in a pleasant setting.

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    Torrens River

    by IreneMcKay Written Jul 16, 2013

    This is a pretty river with walkways. It goes through the centre of Adelaide and through Adelaide botanical gardens. I strongly recommend going for a stroll along it. We saw pelicans and black swans here.

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    Wittunga Botanic Garden - Australia v South Africa

    by wabat Updated Jan 7, 2013

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    The South Australian Government manages three botanic gardens in the Adelaide area:

    The Adelaide Botanic Garden
    Mount Lofty Botanic Garden, and
    Wittunga Botanic Garden.

    The 14 hectares Wittunga Botanic Garden was established by Edwin Ashby in 1902 though did not come into state ownership until 1965. It was opened to the public in 1975 and contains and extensive collection of plants from Australia and South Africa (mainly from the Cape Province district which has similar climatic attributes to Adelaide).

    The gardens were originally establish based on a formal English style though before long began to include South African plants – principally Ericas, Leucadendron and Proteas which are especially beautiful in spring.

    The Australian sections feature plants from Kangaroo Island and the Fleurieu Peninsula (South Australian regions) and south western Australia.

    The garden also features a butterfly garden and a grey box woodland planting, endangered in South Australia.

    While spectacular in spring, it is still very much worth visiting any time of the year. My most recent visit was in December 2012. Give yourself about an hour (unless you bring a picnic and wile away some additional hours relaxing on the lawns by the lake).

    The former Ashby family residence (rebuilt in 1934 after it was destroyed by a bushfire) is not open to the public.

    Mon- Fri 8.30 am to 4 pm, Sat, Sun & public holidays 10 am to 5 pm (10-6 Daylight Saving Summer Period).

    Guided walks leave from the car-park at 10:30am every Tuesday in Spring (September, October and November). The walks last about one and a half hours.

    Getting there : Bus/Train - Due to a months (Jan 2013) upgrade work to the train service I cannot work out the public transport options. Generally the simplest approach is to take a local train from Adelaide Station to Blackwood Interchange (Belair line) and then a local bus or walk the 1km to the Garden. Suggest you ask at Adelaide Station as replacement buses are in operation. I will update as soon as I can.

    Ample carparking is available onsite for those who choose to drive.

    Admission : Free

    Facilities – Toilets only

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    GLOBE DERBY HARNESS RACING

    by balhannah Written Jul 30, 2012

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    Saturday night, and what to do that won't cost a fortune?

    We had our own car, but you can come here easily by public transport.
    The Pacing Track is located on Globe Derby drive, which is 15kms from the CBD. On arrival, we just followed the signs to the FREE PARKING FOR CARS, parked the car, and then made our way to the entry gates.

    Globe Derby has a stand which isn't used much in winter, but in summer it is. A large lawned area at the front had some people with picnic chairs sitting there and enjoying the action.
    Inside is the Restaurant, which serves very good cheap meals, and was very popular. There is other seating behind the large glass windows, so you can stay in here and watch the races, or watch them on the Television's.
    If you want a bet, there is a Tote which you can place bets on all races that are being covered that night. The minimum for a bet is $1.

    There were 10 races the Saturday night we were here. We had a great time, even though it was a cool evening. In Summer, the crowds grow and people come with their children to enjoy the outdoors away from hot houses.

    Quite often, they hold Pony races, where up and coming youngster's get to drive their ponies in a race. I love these, and at the end, they all get a reward.

    ADMISSION DOESN'T BREAK THE BANK......In 2012....Adults $5

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    CROSS OF SACRIFICE MEMORIAL GARDENS

    by balhannah Written Jul 15, 2012

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    Located near St. Peter's Cathedral, is the Cross of Sacrifice Memorial Garden.
    I walked across the road from the Cathedral and into the gardens.
    The hedge lined garden features rose gardens, all were red Roses. I strolled through them, enjoying the roses, the gardens and taking time to view the large Memorial Cross. The Cross of Sacrifice memorial was given by the women of South Australia in memory of the men of South Australia who died in the Great War of 1914-1920. This impressive Cross over-looks the whole park and looking in the opposite direction, it's directly in line with St. Peter's Cathedral.

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    ADELAIDE OVAL

    by balhannah Updated Jul 14, 2012

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    Say Adelaide Oval to me, and what do I think of.....Seagull's on the outfield of the cricket ground!

    It is thought to be the most picturesque Test cricket ground in the world, as you can see St Peter’s Cathedral rising behind the elegant Edwardian scoreboard.

    Quite a bit of history here, from the old Moreton Bay figs, planted in the 1890's, the Edwardian scoreboard erected in 1911, and the famous grassed mounds at the southern and northern ends (“the Hills”) were created in 1898, when earth was carted from the banks of the River Torrens.
    These are being kept in the new renovations of the grounds.
    Over a 100years ago, cycling was held here, this ceased in 1910.

    The Adelaide oval is the home of cricket and host of major sporting and entertainment events. Cricket was first played at the Adelaide Oval in 1873 and the first Test match was played in December 1884, but it was the infamous Bodyline Test in January 1933 that saw a record 174,452 spectators come to Adelaide Oval to watch cricket. .

    The Adelaide Oval has been visited by three future kings of England and Queen Elizabeth on the 1954 royal tour. Other state events held at the Oval include the memorial services for Dame Nellie Melba, Pope John Paul and former Test cricketer David Hookes.
    Some of the world’s best-known entertainers have performed at the Oval with Paul McCartney, Michael Jackson, Madonna, Elton John and Billy Joel.

    At the moment, the Oval is being redeveloped into what you see in my 1st photo.

    TOURS....Start from the Adelaide Oval Function Centre Reception located inside the Clarrie Grimmett gate (North gate) off Pennington Terrace.

    The tours run Monday to Friday at 10am all year round, with the exception of public holidays, match days and when the Oval is being prepared for International events.
    During the South Australian cricket season (October to March) additional tours operate every Tuesday and Thursday commencing at 2pm.

    Prices are $10 adult, $5 children/concession.
    In the event of extreme hot weather (when the temperature is forecast to be 36 degrees or higher) the tours of the Oval will be reduced to one hour duration. Should the forecast be 40 degrees or higher the tours will be cancelled.
    Please phone SACA on 8205 4733 to confirm hot weather conditions.

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    KING WILLIAM STREET

    by balhannah Written Jul 13, 2012

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    King William Street is the main road that runs through the centre of Adelaide. It was named after
    King William IV, the then reigning monarch, who died within a month of it being named.
    A lovely wide street, now once again it has Tram's running down the centre. It is the widest main street of all the Australian State capital cities.

    Interesting is this fact.....Between North Terrace and South Terrace, all east-west roads change their names as they cross King William Street, this is because no one is allowed to cross the path of a monarch.

    Along King William street are many wonderful old historic buildings that were standing here when Horse & carriage was the mode of travel. I even found some heads on one of the buildings!
    It is well worth the walk or the Tram ride from North Terrace or Rundle Mall to Victoria Square.

    The TRAM IS FREE TRAVEL FROM THE ENTERTAINMENT CENTRE TO SOUTH TERRACE

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    BEEHIVE CORNER

    by balhannah Updated Jul 13, 2012

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    The original “Beehive” corner was owned by John Rundle in 1849. The street that ran past his shop was named after him, becoming Rundle Street, which is now known as Rundle Mall.

    The Beehive Corner was built in gothic revival style between 1895-97, a stand-out building at the beginning of Rundle Mall. The name was first used by Messrs Brewer and Robertson when they advertised their new drapery, "The Beehive" in the 'South Australian Register' in 1849.

    The Beehive Corner was often used as a meeting place, and still is, everybody knows where it was located!

    It is also where Adelaide’s first electric street lighting was installed in October 1895, and during the Federation Royal Visit in 1901, seats on a grandstand erected on the corner sold for ten shillings each. The Royal couple, who were later to be crowned King George V and Queen Mary, passed by here a total of three times.

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    ADELAIDE ARCADE COAT OF ARMS

    by balhannah Written Jul 12, 2012

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    Before entering the Adelaide Arcade, I had a good look at the outside. I saw there was the "Coat of Arms", only it was a little different to the one we have today.
    Why, I wondered! The Adelaide Arcade was built in 1885, 16 years before federation and 24 years before a Coat of Arms was officially proclaimed in 1908.

    Various competitions were conducted and the promoters of the Adelaide Arcade decided to adopt the one design they thought would eventually win the competition, only it didn't win!
    How-ever, this Coat of Arms is still the one on the Adelaide arcade.

    The design varies a little. It has a Kangaroo and Emu on each side, although opposite to the final Australian design. Next to the Emu and Kangaroo are sheaths of wheat and below them are grape vines, symbolising Australia as the land of opportunity.
    Above these symbols is the sun rising over the ocean, as it was often referred to as the "Land of the rising sun".
    Below the design is a scroll in which are written the words "Advance Australia".
    A Sheep, Anchor, Sailing Ship crossing the ocean, Pick and shovel, are all symbols of the hard working pioneer spirit

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    STATE LIBRARY OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA

    by balhannah Written Jul 12, 2012

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    Still on the same side as the War Memorial, is the State Library of S.A.
    This is another building along North Terrace with beautiful architecture.

    Stepping inside the foyer, you are welcomed by the "Kaurna" people, the original inhabitants of this area.
    A Greeting stone says...
    "First I welcome you all to my Kaurna country, and next I welcome you to the State Library of South Australia. My brothers, my sisters, let's walk together in harmony.

    Inside, there is plenty to see if you aren't into studying etc.
    Computer's can be used, but they do need to be booked ahead of time.
    The Library has many exhibitions, like one on our most famous Cricketer, "Sir Donald Bradman."

    Some of the exhibitions change, like the ones at the "Treasure Wall." The Wall extends for 24 metres and is made of 40 individual panels featuring South Australian natural materials, including abalone shell, bluestone, coal, cattle hide, copper, green glass, gold, granite, grapevine prunings, iron ore, lead, limestone, opal, quartz composite, salt, silver, slate, steel: car duco, talc, wheat, wool and zinc.

    The current exhibition in May 2012, was about one of our famours Explorerer's, "John McDouall Stuart." This exhibition is celebrating the 150th anniversary of the first successful south to north crossing of Australia through the centre.
    Stuart led six expeditions which explored N/West South Australia, then north towards the centre of the continent, and onwards, finally reaching the north coast of Australia on 24 July 1862. He led all his men safely, even though he was very sick. Stuarts route was used as the Overland Telegraph Line, and is commemorated today by the Stuart Highway. When you visit the outback of Australia, you will realize what a huge achievement this was.
    This is located on Level 1 in the Spence Building until September, 2012, when the exhibition changes.

    The Library is closed on all Public Holidays
    OPEN...Monday-Wednesday 10 am-8 pm.........Thursday and Friday 10 am-6 pm
    Saturday and Sunday 10 am-5 pm

    These are the hours for the main part, check the website for more details.

    ENTRY IS FREE

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    RUTHVEN MANSIONS

    by balhannah Updated Jul 12, 2012

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    After viewing Scots Church, it was time to look at the historic Ruthven Mansions, Adelaides first apartment building with all the “mod cons”, including electric lighting and air conditioning, all those necessities we take forgranted now!
    This 4/5 story building was built in two stages between 1911-12 and 1914.

    One of the first residents of the Ruthven Mansions was English woman, Evelyn James, a stewardess on the Titanic. After the disaster, she married Dr William James and they migrated to Australia, living for more than a year at the Ruthven Mansions.

    Luckily, the building was saved after falling into disrepair and now is Apartments and a Shopping Arcade.

    The Mansion's are the red & cream building located behind Scot's Church in Pulteney Street.

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    THE REGENT ARCADE & PICTURE THEATRE

    by balhannah Written Jul 12, 2012

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    A walk through the Regent arcade took me through to the next street, which was Grenfell street.

    Plenty of Clothing shops catering for all types of wear, from formal to traditional and trendy!
    Plenty of accessory stores, and even beauty salons. Of course, there is always somewhere to enjoy a coffee and cake!

    The Arcade leads through where the Regent Picture Theatre once was. The building is still standing but the Theatre is now closed.
    This nice building, built in 1928, was considered the most luxurious theatre in the country.
    Can you imagine what it was like, I can, as I have been to the pictures here many times.
    They used to have an Orchestra pit, with a full size orchestra and a 1930 Wurlitzer organ. Velvet curtains were drawn open to show the screen, and then all the "shorts' were shown and cartoons.
    This was a time when Picture Theatres were large, and fairly full with patrons. It was a luxurious Theatre.

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