Things to Do in Adelaide - page 2
The city of Adelaide is close to the beach, but isn’t exactly on it. To reach the white sand beaches of Glenelg—a teeming suburb of streetside cafés and fiery evening sunsets—all that’s required is a short ride on the historic Glenelg Tram. Dating back to 1873, the Glenelg Tram line is an Adelaide icon that’s beloved by city residents. It’s the only remaining tram line in the city and a physical link to yesteryear, and it’s also a convenient and affordable way for moving about the town.
Historic H-class cars were used on the tram up until 2006, and while they’ve since been replaced by a more modern fleet, the original cars will sometimes be inserted on Sundays and public holidays. From the large glass windows of the slowly moving tram, watch as the scenery gradually changes from city, to suburb, to beach. The tram is actually free to ride within the downtown city center, although passengers traveling all the way to Glenelg can buy their tickets on board.
Present-day Australia is a country based on immigration. This fascinating and unmissable museum tells the stories of the migrants who came from all over the world to make South Australia their home - where did they come from, why, and how did they get here? There's information on over 100 nationalities in their database, along with poignant personal stories displayed to full effect including some hands-on displays.
Paying respect to the indigenous people of the country, there are also displays of Pre-European Australia and the impact that immigration has had on Indigenous people. Through its education service, the museum actively works to teach about cultural diversity and tolerance.
The Fleurieu Peninsula is a region of South Australia that lies just to the south of Adelaide and prides itself as a place of both adventure and culture. Encompassing the towns of Victor Harbour, Mount Compass, Rapid Bay, Willunga and others, the peninsula has a lot to offer; a host of the historic river and coastal towns celebrate their history with markets, heritage steam trains and some of the finest antique stores. Adventure on the Fleurieu Peninsula comes from the bike paths, the self-drive adventures, the coastal hiking and the conservation parks within the region. Visitors come here to see little penguins come ashore and to watch whales migrating off the coast. Sailing on Lake Alexandria is a popular activity, as is getting under the waves and seeing some of Australia’s best diving, including the HMAS Hobart. The peninsula is also home to one of South Australia’s best wine regions; McLaren Vale and its world-famous Shiraz are among the wines that hail from here.
Just a few minutes from the city center and blessed with a long stretch of white sand, Henley Beach is one of Adelaide’s most attractive coastal retreats. Running for 500-meters along the gulf coast, the city beach is a lively spot, lined with waterfront restaurants, cafés and bars.
Along with swimming and sunbathing, activities at Henley Beach include kayaking, water sports and fishing. A scenic esplanade also runs along the beachside, all the way from Henley Beach to West Beach, with walking and cycling trails connecting the coast to the Torrens riverside.
Sometimes referred to as Light’s Vision, this lookout on Montefiore Hill is named after Colonel William Light, the founding father of Adelaide. During the summer of 1837, Light was put in charge of selecting and surveying the site for the city. A life-sized statue of Colonel Light sits here, having been originally erected in Victoria Square but moved in 1938 to create Light's Vision on top of Montefiore Hill. Local legend says it’s where he looked out and began planning the city.
Ngaut Ngaut is the ancestral home of the Nganguraku people and today serves as a site of archaeological study, history and cultural significance. A visit to the site offers a glimpse into the life, beliefs and customs of the local Aboriginal people, much of whose culture has been lost.
Located on the banks of the Murray River, Ngaut Ngaut takes advantage of the beautiful natural scenery with a boardwalk that runs along the riverbank and allows visitors to walk near the cliffs that rise above an ancient seabed. There is also the opportunity to view an untouched section of the Mighty Murray.
Visitors to Ngaut Ngaut are taken through the park on guided tours, during which guides impart knowledge of the historical Nganguraku culture through viewings of the remaining archaeology. Ngaut Ngaut is the site of incredibly comprehensive rock art that details Aboriginal astronomy with lunar cycles carved into the cliffs.
This iconic railway line is the oldest steel railed railway in the country. It was constructed in 1887 to serve as a passageway between River Murray and Victor Harbor. During its earliest days, passengers would load into the horse-drawn train after collecting cockleshells from the river’s shore.
Visitors can take their own journey on this historic line every day from the Goolwa Depot. The train stops at Port Elliot, near the Encounter Bay Coast, where travelers can explore the local museum. When the train departs Port Elliot, travelers are privy to some of the most picturesque coastal scenery along the Fleurieu Peninsula.
More Things to Do in Adelaide
There are plenty of museums where visitors admire art on the walls and are told to look but not touch. At the National Railway Museum, at Port Adelaide, this is far from the case. Visitors can climb aboard steam engines, wander through dining cars and historic carriages, hop on free train rides and get hands on with interactive displays.
A realistic model railway captures the diverse terrain of Australia’s landscape, including open plains, quaint towns, hills, suburbs and seaports. Special displays examine the history of women in railways, and there’s even an audio tour of the only remaining tea and sugar train car. Travelers can wander through numerous indoor activity centers and explore the buildings outside to get a better sense of the Australian railway’s rich history.
This one-of-a-kind museum showcases the life and times of Australia’s most successful businessman. Housed on the land where RM William’s original iron woodshed once stood, the Outback Heritage Museum is an homage to the famous icon from Down Under. Travelers can comb through a collection of saddles and horse riding paraphernalia, old journals and well-worn clothes and boots. Plus, DVD touch screens and detailed texts allow visitors to learn more about RM William’s life from the man himself.
In addition to impressive family archives, travelers can learn more about the history of Australia’s bushmen and stock up on RM Williams brand boots and shoes—one of the museum store’s hottest sellers.
Things to do near Adelaide
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- Things to do in Mornington Peninsula
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- Things to do in New South Wales
- Things to do in Queensland
- Things to do in Northern Territory