If you’ve never given the city of Adelaide much thought, then boy are you missing out. Not only does this city have an amazing collection of places to eat, drink and visit, all within the CBD, but it’s also surrounded by beautiful nearby regions, that are just waiting to be explored.
Not yet convinced? Well, to help further support our theory that Adelaide may just be the best city on the planet, we’ve made a list of just some of the reasons why below. Once you read about this city’s offering when it comes to quality of life and bang for your buck, you might just have no choice than to agree with us. Prepare to be wowed.
1. The weather scores an A+
Sydney can often be too humid over summer, Melbourne is known for always being cloudy and grey, but when it comes to Adelaide — well, it may just have the perfect weather in comparison. Despite the fact that Adelaide suffers from the odd heatwaves over summer, it doesn’t involve drowning in hot, sticky, air, and as for winter, well, there’s no such thing as unbearably cold days, so this is a win-win in our books.
2. The beaches are beautiful (and uncrowded)
With all that good weather, it’s time to head to the beach! But there’s no need to get frustrated by Bondi’s crowded beaches or pretend to like the not-so-white sands of St Kilda Beach, as the beaches in Adelaide can provide a respite. We’re talking Brighton, Henley, and Glenelg — just some of the many beautiful beaches that Adelaide has to offer. Oh and there’s also Semaphore, a bustling beachside neighbourhood located just a 14 kilometres drive south of Adelaide.
3. Your appetite will be spoilt for choice...
Adelaide is home to countless eateries and restaurants, spoiling locals and visitors alike when it comes to eating out. This can range from UR Caffe, a popular, down-to-earth cafe, perfect for a no-fuss brekky and coffee, all the way to Osteria Oggi, a fancy pants, Italian restaurant where each meal served comes packed with flavour and flare.
4. ...the same goes for your your thirst
From hidden bars tucked away on Peel Street to rooftop bars offering stunning views, this city, much like Melbourne, offers a variety of watering holes — minus all the pretentious nonsense. There’s Maybe Mae, a small, hidden underground bar nestled under the hustle and bustle of Peel Street, or there’s 2KW, an airy, designer venue with a rooftop bar sporting sparkly city views.
5. You can even sample fresh produce at the Adelaide Central Market...
One of the largest undercover markets in the southern hemisphere, Adelaide Central Market is the city’s food meca. Here you can grab a coffee at Fair Espresso, devour freshly baked goods over at Dough, followed by sampling some cheese at The Smelly Cheese Shop. Almost every food stall offers generous tastings too, and you really can’t go wrong with that.
6. ...or have a BBQ on a boat
Ever heard of Adelaide’s BBQ Buoys? Well, prepare to have your mind blown. Take a stroll down Adelaide’s Riverbank precinct, toward the edge of the River Torrens, and you may just spot some people floating along the river on a circular boat (unattended), enjoying a sausage sizzle with a gas grill in the centre. To boot, the boats range from couple sized right up to a ten seater, with hourly rentals starting at $69. Just BYO drinks and sausages, of course.
7. Public transport is easy breezy
Forget being squashed like sardines on the trains of Sydney, or solving the Rubik's Cube that is the tram circuits of Melbourne — Adelaide does public transport so well that even the most inept commuter could find their way around the city — all whilst keeping their personal space in check, no less. Many city transport services are also free, including buses, plus there are also free bicycles available to use around the CBD, promoting a healthier and greener lifestyle.
8. Everything is only a halfa’ away
Almost everything worth visiting in Adelaide is no more than a 30-minute drive from anything else. No, this is not a mind trick, and yes, you read that right. With the city being laid out in a grid, traffic is almost non existent and it's quite literally impossible to get lost. Jealous yet, Sydneysiders?
9. It’s known for being the ‘Festival City’
Ask any local of this city and they’ll likely tell you (proudly) that Adelaide is indeed one of the best cities in the world when it comes to hosting year-round festivals. These include the Adelaide Festival, WOMADelaide, Royal Croquet Club the FEAST Festival, Adelaide Fringe, OzAsia, IndoFest and the Spirit Festival — just to name a few!
10. The culture also checks in
Some of South Australia’s major arts and cultural institutions lie right in the heart of Adelaide’s CBD. This includes the State Library of South Australia, the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, the South Australian Museum, the Art Gallery of South Australia, the Adelaide Festival Centreand Adelaide Zoo. Many of these are near the North Terrace campus of The University of Adelaide, meaning you can count on this area to always be bustling.
11. You can take your pick at the many nearby wine regions
From the Barossa Valley to McLaren Vale, the Adelaide Hills to Clare Valley — Adelaide holds some of the most prized wine regions, all in its own backyard. Step away from Adelaide and visit the infamous d'Arenberg Cube, a quirky museum inspired by the complexities of winemaking. There’s even a specialised Uber service uniquely available in Adelaide Hills called ‘UberVINO’, helping you get around safely from one winery to the next. Now if this isn’t a sign that they take their wine seriously here, we don’t know what does.
12. Or you can go wine tasting without even leaving the city
But just in case you’d prefer to sample wines without leaving the city at all, Adelaide also has your back in this regard. Enter the National Wine Centre located on the edge of the Botanic Gardens, home to Australia's ‘largest tasting room experience’, where you can sample from a range of 120 different Australian wines — all dispensed from the state of-the-art Enomatic servers.
13. Living costs are (way) cheaper
Last, but most certainly not least — your hard earned money will go further Adelaide. According to research published in 2017, Adelaide was the second most affordable city in terms of average rental price (AU$213 per week), versus that of both Sydney (AU$285) and Melbourne (AU$258). This same report also showed that the cost of living in Adelaide is 21% less expensive than Melbourne and 23% less than Sydney. In other words — here in Adelaide, you can have your smashed avo on toast and damn well eat it, too.