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Why a Visit to Adelaide and the Barossa is the Perfect Way to Start your Australian Holiday

One of South Australia’s biggest draws is its wine. And with destinations like Adelaide and the Barossa in its repertoire, it’s easy to see why. Known as the ‘Wine Capital of Australia’, Adelaide has never been easier to get to, with Singapore Airlines offering four daily departures from London Heathrow and five weekly departures from Manchester with a daily onward connection from Singapore to Adelaide. You can even get a taste of Australia before you arrive with the airline’s Australian chef Matt Moran and wine consultant Michael Hill Smith providing onboard delights.

Whether it’s your first time Down Under or you’re an Aussie regular, Adelaide is the perfect place to start. The city epitomises so much of what makes Australian life so great – the laid-back lifestyle, friendly locals, easily accessible beaches, chic cafés and bars, and exceptional cuisine. In this article we will walk through the streets of Adelaide and cruise through the rolling hills of the Barossa to show you why this is the ultimate place to start your Australian itinerary.

Adelaide

Fantastic food and drink experiences

Arrive in the city and the first thing you’ll want to do is something about that growling stomach!  Luckily, you’re in the right place. Head to Adelaide Central Market – the largest covered market in the Southern Hemisphere and the heart of South Australia’s food scene for more than 140 years – and let your senses run wild through the various stalls. If you don’t trust your own eyes or nose to guide you then Mark Gleeson’s early morning walking tour is a great way to meet some of the enthusiastic local store owners and, of course, indulge in a sample or five.

Now that your stomach is full of aromatic espresso, warm artisan breads and rich local cheeses, it’s time for some more relaxation and fraternising with hospitable locals; this time you’ll be tantalising your taste buds with some drinks in Adelaide’s laneway bars. Here, you’ll meander through streets full of trendy independent bars, such as the sailor-themed Hains & Co, specialising in gin and rum, Pink Moon Saloon or Bank Street Social – an underground bar which is the go-to for local craft beers.

Cracking culture

The leafy North Terrace in Adelaide is home to the South Australian Museum. Here you’ll find the world’s largest collection of Australian Aboriginal cultural artefacts – plenty to keep any culture vulture satisfied. It’s also a great place to learn about the rich Aboriginal history of this nation. Feel inspired by the cultural delights on offer here and at the neighbouring Art Gallery of South Australia, both of which are free to enter then visit the Jam Factory to purchase wares from Adelaide’s most eminent creatives.

The outstanding outdoors

Catch a convenient tram to the west side of the city to experience some of the white sandy beaches and beachside neighbourhoods that the locals love so much. Head to Glenelg for a family friendly vibe, Brighton for some superb ocean views – best enjoyed with fish and chips – or Henley for sumptuous seafood and sweeping sands as far as the eye can see. Tip – head out to the beach mid-afternoon and stay for one of the best sunsets you’re ever likely to witness!

By no means is it all about the beach here though; the parks and wide-open spaces are perfect for a casual afternoon picnic and a pleasant stroll after exploration, while the Botanic Gardens are a must-see. Walk through the vibrant rose garden to pick out your favourite shade, visit the striking glasshouse conservatory and Art Deco palm house, and take a photo underneath the magenta wisteria arches.  Alternatively, head to the Adelaide Hills, just 20 minutes from the city centre, to Cleland Wildlife Park for your chance to hold a koala and hand-feed kangaroos.

The Barossa

Like a crisp Sauvignon Blanc and scallops, or a dainty Pinot Noir and a melt-in-the-mouth Brie, Adelaide and the Barossa fit together perfectly.

World-famous wine

Something that is obvious from the moment you step foot in this region is how extraordinarily passionate the people are here, especially when it comes to their produce. With 150 wineries to choose from you can spend days (which could easily turn into weeks if you so desired) being shown around luxurious Chateaux, letting the world slow down in cosy corners of ranch-style vineyards, and tasting samples on sun-drenched terraces, opposite neat lines of vines destined to end up on the very table you are sitting at. For an original experience visit Seppeltsfield and try your own birth year vintage and see whether it’s aged as well as you have.

Hot air ballooning

The very best way to see the Barossa is from the skies. Look down upon neat lines of well-tended vines spilling over gently rolling hills from a peaceful wicker basket with nothing but the gentle whoosh of the gas burner to interrupt the scene. On your return to land make sure you toast your flight with a glass from the area that you just soared above.

Getting hands on

Don’t just limit yourself to tasting all this delicious produce, getting hands on is a superb way to experience the best of the Barossa and one of the best ways to ‘play’ with your food without getting in trouble.

Firstly, make your own blend of wine at Penfolds winery in their wine-makers laboratory and follow their guidance to create something to suit your exact taste. It’s not just the wine that you can get hands on with either, Jacob’s Creek offer intimate cooking courses where you can pick your own produce from the impressive on-site garden and enjoy a lunch you have created, in a wonderfully picturesque setting.

Wonderful wildlife

What would your first few days to Australia be without an opportunity to glimpse some iconic native wildlife? One of the best opportunities to do so is offered by The Louise – an award-winning vineyard, hotel and restaurant. During an experience here, you can sample a picnic-style breakfast with kangaroos, in the wild, as they enjoy their breakfast in genuine Australian bushland.  A dedicated driver will be your guide throughout the whole experience. 

Find out how to expand your visit to Adelaide and the Barossa with our top stops on a South Australia road trip itinerary. Or why not chat to one of our Travel Experts to see how they can help you put together your South Australia Itinerary? Get there in comfort, style and luxury with Singapore Airlines, renowned for its award winning in-flight service and attentive cabin crew.

Written by Joe Stevens

I work in the online marketing department at Flight Centre and am passionate about inspiring others to take the leap to travel. I love exploring the natural world - whether it’s under the waves, up mountain peaks or down in the dirt!