When we received our invitation to attend our nieces wedding in Hahndorf (26km from Adelaide City) I was excited - firstly I had not been to a wedding in, many years and secondly I had not been to Adelaide in nearly 30 years, when I was travelling around the circumference of Australia in a campervan. Having very dulled memories of Adelaide apart from time spent in the nearby Barossa Valley, probably drinking copious glasses of wine, I was keen to rediscover this area. With only 4 days away we had to make a decision whether to spend it all in Hahndorf & get to know that area or break the days up and have a speedy stay in Adelaide - reluctantly we decided to take the risk and split our time and rediscover Adelaide City the best we could in this very short time frame.
Being Dazzled in Adelaide City - a city of contrasts - old & new.
After attending Tessa and Jack's lovely wedding in the small town of Hahndorf, we decided to hit the ground running in Adelaide City. Adelaide is the capital of South Australia (SA) is reknowned for it's parklands set around the River Torrens, it's beautiful old buildings, museums, it's numerous creative sculputres, great cafes and restaurants. Fortunately Adelaide is not unlike my hometown Wellington and is quite a small city and much to our delight we were able to tick of a large number of these sights.
No stay away for us foodies would be spent without having tried and researched the best places to eat. Luigi's Delicatessan on Flinders Street was our first choice for breakfast and it didn't disappoint. Breakfast was delicious.
Breakfast at Luigi's Delicatessan on Flinders Street, Adelaide City
Rundle Street and Rundle Street Mall appears to be the main street for shoppers, not being an avid shopper myself the highlight for me was discovering the life sized bronze sculptures of four pigs. These sculptures named 'A Day Out' by Marguerite Derricourt are depicted in lively poses as if they are walking the mall (one even has his head in a rubbish bin). These clever additions have made this mall a tourist destination and the lively place it is .
One of the Rundle Mall piggies - part of a set of four bronze pigs called 'A Day Out'
Rundle Street Mall is also the home to another eye catching sculpture - two stainless steel spheres balanced on top of each other and named 'Spheres' by Burt Flugelman (fondly known as Mall's Balls).
'Spheres' by Burt Flugelman is a creative addition to Rundle Street Mall
'Spheres' often referred to as Mall's Balls offers a great reflective image of Rundle Street Mall.
After our walk along Rundle Street mall and still in need of some exercise to walk of our rather large but delicious breakfast we decided to take in some of the greenery and what better place to go than the Adelaide Botanical Gardens. The Botanical Gardens is a 51 hectre public garden at the north east corner of the city centre, in the Adelaide Parklands and next to the Botanic Park. Here you will find a large diversity of plants from across Australia and around the world. One of my highlights and surprising finds was their huge collection of different Cacti - way more diverse species than I had seen on my recent travels in Mexico.
Some prickly finds.
An even bigger highlight though was found outside the Botanical Gardens in Botanic Park where we discovered the most incredible century old Morten Bay Fig trees. These trees stand majestic with their huge trunks and gnarly roots curling along the ground.
The most majestic array of century old Morten Bay Fig trees
As I reluctantly left these majestic trees and walked further through the park we were intrigued with all the white feathers lying on the ground. These feathers, my guess, could only belong to one bird - the cockatoo. I was soon greeted with the sight of dozens of noisy cockatoo moving along the ground, pecking at some tasty treats. Then to my real joy I would watch them fly up in to the trees - this time Australian gum trees. The sight of these white barked trees against the blue sky and cockatoos perched up high kept me mezmerized for way too long (way too long in my husband's eyes)!!
After getting the hurry along we headed towards the Adelaide Oval (this would keep the husband happy). The Adelaide Oval is located in the Parklands, between the City Centre and North Adelaide. This very impressive world class venue is mainly used for cricket and Australian rules football, although the occasional rugby, tennis and soccer are also played.
The Adelaide Oval - even I was impressed with this world class sporting venue.
Not far from the Oval you can't help but observe the beautiful St Peter's Cathedral. This French Gothic designed Cathedral is a major landmark in Adelaide City and a majestic backdrop against the modern architecture of the Adelaide Oval.
The beautiful St Peter's Cathedral
Next it was time to head to the river. The River Torrens is the most significant river of the Adelaide Plains and runs for 85km. There are some lovely walking paths along the river or you can take a scenic boat ride on a Popeye!! We chose to do a scenic walk instead.
A walk along the River Torrens.
Our next destination the Art Gallery of South Australia, located on the cultural boulevard of North Terrace. Next to this is the University of Adelaide, the third oldest university in Australia - both very impressive buildings but sadly time did not allow us to venture inside.
Outside the beautiful building of the Art Gallery of South Australia.
Having heard Adelaide had a great food scene we were keen to explore Adelaide Central Market - the largest undercover market in the Southern Hemisphere. The market was opened in 1869 and is a gourmet haunt with over 70 vendors selling organic, artisan, and premium products - a food lovers dream.
The Colourful and Delicious Adelaide Central Market.
After a full day of walking and exploring it was time to head back to our hotel on Frome Street and have a quick rest and clean up before heading out for dinner. Having done a fair bit of walking and observing we had sussed out a place to have drinks and then read up on some great places to dine. Golden Boy (fusion Thai cuisine) won the night - was our choice to eat and certainly won the night with taste, restaurant design and service.
I can totally recommend this restaurant - Golden Boy.
Not usually an advocate of exploring and making an assessment of a city in such a short time frame I think we did pretty well seeing as much as we did and I left being charmed by this small attractive city with it's very impressive range of natural, architectural and foodie delights.
Signs of Autumn in Adelaide.
A passion for photography and a love of travel - Liz now enjoys combing the two.
Mangonui to Cape Reinga