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Vacation Haven Adelaide's Top Holiday Destinations

Vacation Haven: Adelaide’s Top Holiday Destinations

Already marked your calendar for your vacay but unsure where to go? You’re in luck because SA’s capital Radelaide and its nearby areas offer a barrel of holiday fun. 

Our team of wanderlust-filled writers shares their top recommendations below!

Within Adelaide

 Adelaide Central Market

Website: http://www.adelaidecentralmarket.com.au/
Address: 44-60 Gouger St, Adelaide SA 5000
Contact Details: (08) 8203 7494
Operating Hours: 

  • Mon – Closed
  • Tue to Thu – 9 am to 5:30 pm
  • Fri – 7 am to 9 pm
  • Sat – 7 am to 3 pm

You can’t start your holiday adventure with your tummy singing the hungry blues, so we’ll go straight to our city’s Flavortown, aka the bustlin’ and hunger-bustin’ Adelaide Central Market!

For starters, why don’t you try to add a dash of discovery to your trip by trying something wild at—well, Something Wild? This is your chance to try crocodile patties, emu fillets, or boar bacon!

If you go bananas for fruits, Aubergine and Coco’s Fruit and Veg are our top picks. 

Indulge in Haigh’s Chocolates’ sweet treats, too! We suggest pairing them with Fleurieu Milk Co’s milk for the full sweet tooth extravaganza.

Tip: If you’re looking for international flavors, have a taste of Le Souk’s authentic Algerian dishes or Asia Gourmet’s Malaysian kitchen marvels!

Adelaide Botanic Garden

Website: http://www.botanicgardens.sa.gov.au/
Address: North Terrace, Adelaide SA 5000
Contact Details: (08) 8222 9311
Operating Hours: 

  • Mon to Fri – 7 am to 5:30 pm
  • Sat to Sun – 9 am to 5:30 pm

Our love for the Adelaide Botanic Gardens continues to blossom like this spot’s roses and orchids. 

Our team usually starts our visit here at the wallpaper-worthy Bicentennial Conservatory, a stunning glasshouse showcasing a rainforest canopy.

Then, we’ll head to the flowery gateways and pavement of the International Rose Garden, a serene spot brimming with rose varietals more romantic than a candlelit dinner on a hilltop. 

From there, we’ll beeline to the ponds with Amazonica water lilies for a breather.

Tip: For the best spot to enjoy a picnic in Adelaide Botanic Garden, head to the lush and picturesque First Creek Wetland near the entrance. 

This tranquil area offers a laid-back ambiance surrounded by beautiful native vegetation and a gently flowing creek. 

Adelaide Zoo

Website: http://www.glenelgbeach.com.au/
Address: Frome Rd, Adelaide SA 5000
Contact Details: (08) 8267 3255
Operating Hours: Daily – Open 24 Hours

Growing up near Adelaide Zoo, I’m not lion when I say it’s a purrfect holiday getaway. Adelaide Zoo is home to a diverse range of animal species, such as majestic lions, cheeky meerkats, and playful pandas.

Speaking of pandas, pay the ever-adorable Fu-Ni and Wang Wang a visit. If animals don’t make you jump out of fear like roos spotting dingos, we suggest giving their interactive tours and exhibits a go. 

By joining, you can hand-feed giraffes, have a close encounter with a koala, or even participate in behind-the-scenes experiences to learn more about the zoo’s conservation work.

Tip: Bring comfortable walking shoes, sunscreen, and a hat, as you’ll be spending a significant amount of time exploring the zoo’s expansive grounds. It’s also a good idea to bring a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated throughout the day.

North of Adelaide

Lake Eyre

Website: https://www.parks.sa.gov.au/parks/kati-thanda-lake-eyre-national-park

At Lake Eyre, our worries dissipated like ripples on the water and were replaced by a sense of peace. Lake Eyre is the largest salt lake in Australia and one of the largest in the world, making it a must-see spectacle for locals and tourists alike.

Lake Eyre’s vast expanse of shimmering salt flats, occasional water-filled sections, and surrounding desert plains create a mesmerizing and otherworldly beauty that is worth exploring. Having picnics or stargazing by the idyllic shore is also pure bliss.


  • If you’re willing to break the bank, one of the best ways to experience the lake’s grandeur is through a scenic flight. From above, you can take in the vastness of the lake, the intricate patterns of salt crusts, and the contrasting colors of the surrounding landscapes. 
  • For those who prefer a more grounded and thrilling exploration, we advise hitting the tracks enveloping the lake for a more action-packed adventure.

Flinders Ranges

Website: https://southaustralia.com/destinations/flinders-ranges-and-outback
Address: Flinders Range SA 5434

Flinders Ranges’ sweltering heat can be too much, but its true-blue Australian Outback landscapes are worth breaking a sweat. 

Check out Wilpena Pound, a geological amphitheater surrounded by expansive plains, rocky bushwalking trails, and dramatic cliffs. Animal enthusiasts will have a blast here, as the pound is home to emus and kangaroos!


  • Flinders Ranges offers plenty of activities. You can go on a 4WD adventure, camp under the starlit sky, or venture to the mystical Kanyaka Ruins. 
  • The Wilpena Pound may be Flinders Ranges’ hottest attraction, but don’t disregard the area’s other remarkable geological formations like Arkaroola geological trail, Brachina Gorge, and Parachilna Gorge.

Coober Pedy

Website: https://www.cooberpedy.com/
Address: Coober Pedy SA 5723

Looking to add a quirky flavor to your holiday? Coober Pedy, the Opal Town of SA, is famous for its underground homes and alien-looking landscapes.

We began our Outback retreat here by unearthing what the underground has to offer at Old Timer’s Mine and Museum and Tom’s Working Opal Mine

These allowed us to experience an authentic opal mining environment!


  • Do yourself a favor and visit the Kangaroo Sanctuary to get up close with these iconic Australian marsupials. 
  • Also, don’t miss The Big Winch, an iconic attraction turned cafe in the arid highlands that provides a panoramic view of lunar-like dunes and rocky outcrops. The sunset view here is so majestic!

South of Adelaide

Glenelg Beach

Website: http://www.glenelgbeach.com.au/
Address: Glenelg SA 5045
Operating Hours: Daily – Open 24 Hours

Beaching at Glenelg is an Australian classic. Here, we take a dip in the sparkling waters, soak up the sun, or simply relax with a good book.

You can also stroll along Jetty Road, Glenelg’s main road, lined with seaside boutiques, cafes, and restaurants. If your definition of a holiday is sunset viewing with a glass of Pink Flirtini Cocktail, Moseley Square is where you should be!


  • If you brought your fam for your holiday retreat, The Beachhouse should be your go-to destination. This fam-friendly amusement park has it all: waterslides, arcades, carousels, a game of mini golf, and the golden opportunity to stroll on the stunning Glenelg Jetty.
  • Dolphin watching is also huge at Glenelg Beach, so if you’re lucky like us, you may spot dolphins swimming and showing off near the shoreline. If you want to increase your chances of seeing these friendly flippers, join a boat tour.

Mt Gambier

Website: https://discovermountgambier.com.au/
Address: Mt Gambier SA 5290

Our team’s exploration of Mount Gambier was a hole lot of fun with the spot’s exciting sinkholes and lakes. 

Our favorite spots? Umpherton Sinkhole, Tantanoola Caves, and the nearby Blue Lake, a natural attraction known for its water’s dramatic color changes.

We also journeyed to the volcanic craters that have formed over thousands of years, offering a fascinating geological discovery that’s one for the ages. 

After blowing off steam on the craters, we then headed to The Gambier Bottleshop to chillax with a bottle of Shiraz!

Tip: Immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of Mount Gambier by visiting the local art galleries, museums, and historical sites. 

We totally enjoyed the Riddoch Arts and Cultural Center, which houses exhibitions on local history and contemporary art.

Another must-see is the Lady Nelson Visitor and Discovery Center, where you can delve deeper into the region’s maritime history. 

Kangaroo Island

Website: https://www.tourkangarooisland.com.au/

Kangaroo Island is a vacation wonderland with uncrowded beaches and landscapes teeming with wildlife!

Here, you can dive into relaxation, ride the waves, and soak up the beach vibes with activities like snorkeling, fishing, and beachcombing. 

Prepare to spot kangaroos (it’s named Kangaroo Island, after all!), wallabies, and sea lions! 

Check out Flinders Chase National Park, too! This holiday destination is home to iconic landmarks such as Remarkable Rocks and Admirals Arch—all nestling near the coastline with other rock formations and waterbirds.

Tip: The island is a tantalizing treasure trove of high-quality local produce, boasting fresh seafood, golden honey, artisanal cheese, and exquisite wines. Indulge in these culinary delights, and let your taste buds embark on a holiday feast for the senses!

McLaren Vale Region

Website: https://mclarenvale.info/
Address: McLaren Vale SA 5171

McLaren Vale is a region renowned for its world-class reds, savvy wine cellars, and grape-teeming terroir.

It’s not just about wine, though; it also offers an exemplary culinary scene. We enjoyed the region’s farm-fresh produce, like artisanal cheeses, delectable chocolates, and gourmet delights sourced from local restaurants and food markets. 

Tip: McLaren Vale also offers a lot of outdoor activities for adventure enthusiasts. You can go cycling through the vineyards, go on rejuvenating walks or hikes in nearby conservation parks, or even try your hand at horse riding. 

The region’s mild Mediterranean climate provides a conducive environment for outdoor odysseys!

East of Adelaide

Adelaide Hills

Website: https://www.visitadelaidehills.com.au/

Nothing screams of vacation more than sipping Sauvignon Blanc while relaxing in Tillbrook Estates in Adelaide Hills as soft classical music plays.  

Nature and colonial architecture are the stars of the show here. Adelaide Hills’ undulating highlands, evergreen pastures, and charming stonewalled townships got the best of our wallets, but every penny was well spent, mates! 

Also, driving in this region was already a breather, with streets like the Mount Lofty Summit Road providing movie-like views of the extensive Adelaide Plains. 

Trip Tip: Learn about a side of Adelaide’s history you may not have known before. See European-style pitched roofs and half-timbered German facades!  

The Adelaide Hills are dotted with quaint historic towns such as Hahndorf and Lobethal that unveil a snapshot of the region’s rich history and heritage.

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