Ask anyone you know or some random outgoers you see about their favourite things to do, and they’ll almost always say that traveling is at the top of their list!
If travelling still needs to be added to your list, what are you waiting for? Go out and explore the world as it is your oyster! For starters, places like Adelaide Australia, are a great choice to boost your travel experience.
A 3-Day Adelaide Itinerary
Having lived in Adelaide since 2020, I can affirm that it is a beautiful place to start your journey. To help you begin, here is a quick 3-day Adelaide itinerary to maximize your trip to one of the best places to visit in Adelaide!
Day 1: Adelaide Central Market
Day 1 is mostly for preparation and going to the first places you want to explore. This day is also where you’ll get to reach the airport and check what the vibe of the place is all about!
To start, here are some of my top go-to places you have to explore first on your first day in Adelaide:
Adelaide Central Marketr
The first stop is the Central Market which is deemed to be one of the best things to do in Adelaide for both foodies and cultural enthusiasts. Indeed, this market is so special, and it has to do with both the crowd who go there and the different things you can buy at an affordable price.
For starters, one of the best activities you can do here is to sample the local cuisine. Traditional South Australian specialties run rampant here, and they can range from pastries, meat pies, and famous Adelaide “pie floaters,” which I urge you to taste!
If, for whatever reason, that isn’t enough to satisfy your experience, then booking a guided tour on your way to this culinary journey may help enhance the experience.
You’ll also meet all sorts of traders and learn about their different products and taste some of their succulent offerings. Conversely, you can also take some helpful cooking classes and learn how to prepare these amazing local cuisines yourself.
Aside from food-related escapades, the Adelaide Central Market is also home to several cultural events and activities throughout the year. Personally, the best time to go to Adelaide is during the later ends of the year, when Christmas is just around the corner.
Some of the most robust and flamboyant staged events you can attend here are the live music festival and art exhibitions— all of which can occur in the market itself.
In a nutshell, the Adelaide Central Market is a vibrant cultural hub that’s filled with delicious food and a warm community you can share the glorious experience. If you have quite the appetite, this first landing trip is all you need to go to for a wonderful experience— but of course, we still have quite a few places on our Adelaide itinerary!
Adelaide Botanic Garden
After munching and digesting the delicious meat pies you ate at the market, it’s time to go to a more relaxing and serene place like the Adelaide Botanic Garden.
This amazing green conservatory is worldly-revered, and it spans over 50 acres of land. It also houses over 5,000 plant species from around the world which, includes several rare and endangered plants.
When you visit the Adelaide Botanic Garden, get ready to be surrounded by a wonderland of themed gardens that will take your breath away! From the vibrant palm house and Bicentennial Conservatory to the serene water lily pavilion and medicinal garden, there’s so much to explore.
One of the best things to do in Adelaide Botanic Garden is to simply unwind and immerse yourself in the peaceful surroundings. You can meander through the tranquil pathways, marvelling at the stunning flowers, trees, and water features.
Take a moment to sit and relax with a good book, have a lovely picnic with your friends or family, or just admire the breathtaking landscapes and vistas.
If you’re keen to learn more about the plants and gardens, join one of the guided tours led by passionate volunteers. They’ll give you fascinating insights into the history and significance of the garden and its various collections.
But if you’re more of an independent explorer, you can download the self-guided audio tour app and go at your own pace.
South Australian Museum
While a trip to the botanical gardens is as majestic as anywhere else, the South Australian Museum just about matches it with grandeur and presence!
First off, did you know that the South Australian Museum is one of the oldest and most important museums in all of Australia?
With over 4 million objects and specimens, this place is an absolute treasure trove of knowledge and history. From ancient fossils and minerals to contemporary artworks and Aboriginal artifacts, there’s something here for everyone.
Do you know what’s the next big step after visiting the museum? A trip to the beach that is! Arguably Adelaide’s most popular and pristine beach is Glenelg which is filled with a soothing ambience and beautiful coastline!
The beach itself is simply stunning— but more than that, it’s incredibly relaxing and vibrant, with a bustling atmosphere. You also have a chance to visit local shops and cafes. Grabbing a bite to eat at one of these many beachfront restaurants or indulge in some retail therapy.
For those interested in history and culture, Glenelg also has a rich heritage dating back to the early days of Adelaide’s settlement. You can take a stroll along the historic Jetty Road, visit the old Glenelg Town Hall, or learn about the region’s indigenous heritage at the Bay Discovery Centre.
There are certainly a lot more Adelaide beaches around, but I think this one beats all of them due to the numerous amenities and the amazing environment you’ll get to experience once visiting.
Jetty Road Shopping Precinct
A visit to the shopping district of Adelaide just about completes a perfect day when visiting.
Firstly, the precinct is home to a diverse range of shops, from trendy boutiques and designer labels to unique gift stores and local artisans.
You can shop for fashion, jewellery, homewares, souvenirs, and much more. Whether you’re looking for something specific or just browsing for inspiration, there’s something for everyone.
Jetty Road is not only a shopping destination but also a hub of activity with a bustling and energetic vibe.
There are numerous cafes, bars, and restaurants to choose from where you can enjoy a cup of coffee, savour delicious meals, or relish locally-made wine or craft beer. The dining options range from cozy cafes and pubs to upscale restaurants, catering to a diverse range of tastes and preferences.
Not to mention, the Jetty Road shopping precinct boasts a convenient location, making it easily accessible by public transport, thanks to the tram running directly from the city. For those driving, there are several parking options to choose from, ensuring a hassle-free experience.
Day 2: Adelaide Hills, Mount Lofty Summit
Day 2 is entirely different from Day 1 in that you’re now quite exhausted from the first trip to the amazing place. However, there are still a lot of fun activities to enjoy, and let’s tick each item on the list of places to go in Adelaide once you’re there!
Adelaide Hills is an absolutely wonderful place to visit if you’re seeking natural beauty, quaint towns, and an array of outdoor activities. This region is renowned for its rolling hills, lush forests, and charming vineyards, making it an ideal retreat from the hustle and bustle of city life.
For those who love hiking, Adelaide Hills offers an array of trails to suit different skill levels. You can opt for an easy stroll through tranquil woods or take on a challenging hike with awe-inspiring views, such as the Mount Lofty Summit Trail, which offers breathtaking panoramic views of Adelaide and the coastline.
Beyond hiking, there are many delightful towns and villages to discover in Adelaide Hills. Each town has its own distinct personality and allure, such as the historic German settlement of Hahndorf, where you can relish traditional German cuisine and beer.
Alternatively, you can explore the artsy and bohemian town of Stirling, which boasts unique boutique shops and galleries.
Wine aficionados will also appreciate Adelaide Hills for its world-class wineries. This region is famous for its cool climate wines, especially the crisp and refreshing Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir.
You can visit the various cellar doors and relish the local wines while immersing yourself in the picturesque vineyard surroundings.
Mount Lofty Summit
If you’re visiting Adelaide Hills, make sure to add Mount Lofty Summit to your Adelaide itinerary!
This is a highly popular destination among locals and tourists alike, thanks to its awe-inspiring panoramic views of Adelaide and the surrounding areas. From the summit, you can see rolling hills, verdant forests, and a sparkling coastline that will take your breath away.
For adventure seekers, there are a variety of activities to enjoy at Mount Lofty Summit. One of the best ways to take in the scenery is by hiking the Mount Lofty Summit Trail, which is a must-do hike for experienced hikers.
This trail spans around 3.9 km (2.4 miles) and typically takes 2-3 hours to complete. Along the way, you’ll be treated to mesmerizing views that make for excellent photo opportunities.
If you prefer a more relaxed Adelaide visit, you can drive up to the summit and enjoy the stunning scenery from one of the many lookout points. You can take your time to soak in the views and capture some memories.
If you’re an animal lover and have a family with kids, the Cleland Wildlife Park is also located at Mount Lofty Summit. This is a popular attraction where you can interact with some of Australia’s native wildlife, including kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, and emus.
Looking for a fun and delightful destination in South Australia? Look no further than Barossa Valley! This region is a perfect spot for wine enthusiasts, nature lovers, and history buffs alike.
When it comes to food, Barossa Valley is a foodie’s paradise. You can indulge in a range of delicious dishes, including artisan cheeses, fresh produce, and gourmet meats. Don’t miss the chance to try the local specialties— they are simply divine!
If you’re interested in history and culture, Barossa Valley has got you covered too. The valley has a rich history and culture, with many historic sites and museums to explore.
You can visit the Barossa Regional Gallery, which showcases local artists’ work, or the Barossa Museum, which highlights the region’s unique heritage.
Barossa Valley also offers plenty of outdoor activities, including hiking, cycling, and hot-air ballooning. You can take a hot air balloon ride over the valley and take in the breathtaking views from above. Or, you can go for a hike or a bike ride and explore the beautiful countryside.
Day 3: Adelaide Oval
Sadly, Day 3 is the most sentimental day of this Adelaide itinerary because you’ll be leaving soon right after— but fret not, as you can always extend your stay if you please. For the sake of this itinerary, here are some Day 3 activities that are a must-do in Adelaide:
Take a guided tour of the Oval and learn about its rich history, architecture, and technological innovations. You’ll get to see the stadium’s iconic stands and change rooms and even experience the exclusive RoofClimb, which offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city.
Now, let’s talk about food— because who doesn’t love a delicious meal with a view? Adelaide Oval is home to several restaurants and cafes that offer a range of culinary delights and stunning views of the stadium and the city.
Whether you’re looking for a quick bite or a fancy meal, you’re sure to find something to suit your taste.
But wait, there’s more! The Adelaide Oval Museum is another must-see attraction, where you can explore the rich history of the Oval and its sporting events. The museum features interactive exhibits, rare sports memorabilia, and multimedia displays that take you on a journey through the Oval’s past.
And finally, if you’re a music lover like me, you won’t want to miss the concerts and events that Adelaide Oval hosts throughout the year. From outdoor concerts to comedy shows, there’s always something happening at this incredible venue.
Art Gallery of South Australia
Are you ready to immerse yourself in a world of art, culture, and history? Then the Art Gallery of South Australia is the perfect destination for you!
This is another gallery that you should visit beside the amazing South Australian Museum, and this establishment has a lot to offer on that front.
The gallery boasts an extensive collection of over 45,000 artworks, ranging from ancient Egyptian pieces to contemporary Australian and international works. You can lose yourself for hours exploring the various exhibitions and collections on display.
But it’s not just about admiring the art— the gallery offers a range of engaging workshops, talks, and events for adults and children. These are a great way to learn more about the history and techniques behind the art and get hands-on experience creating your own masterpieces.
Remember to take a moment to appreciate the gallery’s stunning architecture, which seamlessly blends colonial and contemporary design. The airy, light-filled spaces provide the perfect setting for the art on display.
When you need a break, head to the Gallery Shop and Cafe. The shop offers a range of art-related books, prints, and souvenirs, while the cafe serves up delicious food and drinks.
For a deeper understanding of the gallery’s collection, take a guided tour with a knowledgeable guide. They can provide insights and context on the artworks, making for a more enriching experience.
Port Adelaide is a hidden gem located northwest of Adelaide City that’s full of maritime history and a relaxed atmosphere. As the tail-end destination of your Adelaide trip, this port has a ton to offer for your experience.
The port was once a bustling port city, and its rich history can still be seen in the architecture and museums in the area. The South Australian Maritime Museum is a must-visit to learn about the city’s seafaring past.
You can also take a guided tour of the historic buildings and landmarks that line the streets.
Also, every Sunday, the Port Adelaide Markets open their doors, and it’s a must-visit for anyone looking for unique gifts and souvenirs. You can find handmade crafts, vintage clothing, fresh produce, and so much more.
One of the best ways to experience Port Adelaide’s maritime history is by taking a river cruise. The cruises offer breathtaking views of the city and its surroundings and provide insights into the area’s history and culture.
In terms of food, Port Adelaide has a range of restaurants and cafes that offer delicious food and drinks.
Seafood lovers will be in heaven, with many seafood restaurants serving up fresh catches of the day. You can also grab a coffee at one of the local cafes.
This beautiful port is also known for its vibrant street art scene, with murals and installations scattered throughout the suburb. You can take a self-guided tour or join a street art tour to explore the amazing artworks.
Lastly, a river cruise in Port River is the best end to your amazing trip in Adelaide. If you’re looking for a unique way to experience Port Adelaide’s rich history and see the famous Port River dolphins, a river cruise is a must-do activity.
Board the river cruise and take in the stunning views of the historic port. As you glide along the river, your guide will provide insights into the area’s history and culture, pointing out landmarks and buildings that played a significant role in the city’s maritime past.
Keep your eyes peeled for the famous Port River dolphins, which are known for their playful nature and curious personalities. The dolphins are a highlight of the river cruise, and you’ll have the opportunity to see them up close as they swim alongside the boat.
As you continue along the river, you’ll learn about the conservation efforts that have been put in place to protect the dolphins and their habitat. You’ll also hear about the fascinating marine life that calls the Port River home, from giant cuttlefish to sea dragons.
Then, you can finish your day with a seafood feast at one of Port Adelaide’s many seafood restaurants.
You can try fresh oysters, prawns, or fish, all caught locally and cooked to perfection. Raise a glass of South Australian wine to a day well spent exploring the rich history and natural beauty of Port Adelaide.
As you say goodbye to Adelaide, be sure to take a few pictures with you before going back home and bidding farewell to one of Australia’s most amazing places!
It doesn’t take a lot of effort to enjoy a trip— especially in a place like this— so ensure that you have maximum energy before visiting Adelaide!
Guest Post Author
I’m Kate from Here Goes Kate, a travel enthusiast and an Adelaide local. I have this insatiable desire for adventure and off-beaten track experiences. I love to travel spontaneously and immerse myself in the beauty of this world. Follow my adventures and let me take you with me on my journey around Australia.
Have you been to Adelaide? Did you enjoy your experience? What was your favorite thing to do?
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