Adelaide - Vibrant and Friendly South Australia

The city where there's always something going on - that's Adelaide. Famed for being at the heart of the wine industry in Australia, the South Australian capital simply exudes life through its festivals, food, culture, sports and its history. The vibrant city with its friendly folk is a great place for a holiday as there is so much you can do, no matter what your ages or interests are.

As far as driving holiday destinations go, you cannot get much better than Adelaide. Once you are done exploring the historic architecture and the beautiful churches in the city, you can head further afield to the lush farmlands and rolling hills that lie in its hinterland.

Not twenty minutes from the CBD are the Adelaide Hills, an enchanting region of picture perfect farmlands that has inspired generations of artists. The mountain vistas are of course the subject of many paintings, and you will enjoy forming your own pictures and memories as you drive through the hills. Within them small villages like Handorf are home to numerous craft shops selling the work of local artists, and you can also stock your picnic baskets with succulent fresh produce from the farm stores.

Accommodation options abound, so no matter what your budget you will be catered for!

As a city Adelaide is often remembered for its open grassy parks, a feature that has helped create the outdoor, sporty image it has. This image has not been harmed either by the fact that it is built on the banks of the wide and smooth flowing River Torrens, which is the basis of much recreational activity in the city.

On any given day canoeists, kayakers and fishermen are found up and down its length, and many people make use of the barbeque and picnic facilities on its shady banks for that perfect family outing.

Many of the parks are located on its banks, and an especially popular one is Elder Park, where you can hire paddleboats to take you on a river adventure. There are also bicycles available to explore the lush banks of the Torrens further.

Another popular park is Rymill Park, which is built on a large lake where you can take rowboats out for a paddle. A nice and shady park, there is also a playground here for the kids and a kiosk serving the best coffee in town!

The Botanic Park is home to the annual music festival WOMADelaide, and is also known for its close proximity to the Botanic Gardens and the Zoo. The zoo is one of the premier conservation establishments in the country, with over 3400 animals from all over the world kept in enclosures remarkably similar to their own habitat. It especially concentrates on rare and endangered animals from the Gondwanaland region, so expect to find many Asian and Indian animals housed amongst the 125 year-old perfectly manicured gardens.

Being the wine capital of Australia you simply have to visit the National Wine Centre. Here the complete wine experience is offered, and whatever questions you have will surely be answered! It promotes awareness of over 10 000 different types of wine from over 60 different regions, from the Hunter Valley to the Clare Valley.

Of course nothing beats going to the wineries and tasting the real thing, and with the high number located close to Adelaide you are spoiled for choice. A great option is to hop into your hirecar and drive the hour or so to the Barossa Valley, where beautiful gardens and vineyards await you. These fertile soils are home to some instantly recognisable wineries, such as Wolf Blass and Yalumba. There are a large number of accommodation options and its a pleasant break from the city hustle.

Although not as famous as their coastal counterparts further north, the beaches of Adelaide are not to be snubbed. In fact 60 kilometres of beaches make up the metropolitan coastline here, and in the summer they are filled with surfers, swimmers and sunbaskers.

Glenelg and Brighton are your typical beachside suburbs with that 'city meets bay' kind of atmosphere, and your day at the beach here can be complemented by a stroll through the shops, restaurants and bars that line the sandy shores.

With so much on offer, any holiday in Adelaide is going to be non stop excitement and adventure, a constant barrage of new sights and sounds! Yet at the same time it is a place where you can step back from the hustle and bustle, enjoy a bit of quiet time and really recharge those batteries. It doesnt matter what kind of vacation you want, you are bound to find it in Adelaide!

Gavin Wyatt

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