SAVOUR SOUTH AUSTRALIA
South Australia is a secret waiting to be revealed. It is synonymous with wine country where the regions offer a drop to suit all palates. Experience the state's finest wines, feast on fresh produce cook by acclaimed chefs, and savour the flavours of South Australia.
Beyond the plate explore the state's diverse natural landscapes and experience native wildlife in their habitat. The rugged beauty of Kangaroo Island is the perfect contrast to the untouched bush of the Flinders and the Outback. Spend lazy days cruising the Murray River or adventure seekers can get the adrenaline pumping with shark cage diving in Port Lincoln. No matter what kind of traveller you are, South Australia will surprise and inspire you.
Flights - The most convenient way to travel to Adelaide is with Air New Zealand on the direct flight from Auckland to Adelaide. Flights depart and on somedays do require an overnight. I stayed at the Auckland Airport Gateway Hotel for my overnight. The hotel was very dated but in the process of an upgrade, however the rooms had been refurbished and were of a very good standard for what is a cheap overnight stop.
JC Buses and Priority One Limousines - The transfer from Adelaide airport is very quick at just 15-20 minutes.
Adelaide Central Market
- Is open every day but Sunday and Mondays. It is the third largest market in Australia and a real treat to look around the beautifully presented stalls, many of which offer samples. One of the best ways to experience the market is to pre-arrange one of the tours run by Adelaide Market Tours. They also offer hands-on cooking classes and I can arrange for them to put together picnic baskets for clients, filled with a selection of yummy goodies to enjoy in the nearby park.
Commonwealth Bank Roof Climb Adelaide Oval - One of Adelaide's newest attractions, you are lead along the impressive curved roofline of the oval for a birdseye view of the city and beyond. Near the end you have a opportunity to do a "leanout" from the viewing platform. They also offer a climb taking in a quarter of an AFL match and will soon introduce cricket to the experience. You couldn't get better views than this and it's a great way to top off the climb.
Ibis Adelaide - A fantastic location just a short stroll to Rundle Mall and a 15 minute walk to the Adelaide market. Rooms are comfortable enough in size and nicely decorated.
Golden Boy Restaurant - THE BEST Thai food I have ever tasted. The service was exceptional and every single dish on the Tuk Tuk menu was outstanding. If you enjoy Thai food this place is a must.
Day in the Mclaren Vale - The Bending Table at the D'Arenberg Winery was a really neat experience and you can book this as a single or couple. It is a hands on, interactive experience where you get you play winemaker. Once you have created your preferred blend you get to take a bottle home to show off to your friends.
Lunch at the Coriole Vineyards - A close equal to the Thai at Golden Boy, the lunch at this vineyard was exceptional. The duck liver parfait was to die for and we had a range of dishes, ending in Oxtail risotto.
- A combination of a cheese shop, licensed cafe and Provedore, they offer a cheese tasting pack and a map with details for you to experience a cheese matched with wine tour. The concept is unique and it just needs a couple of tweeks and it will be a great afternoon.
McLaren Vale Motel and Apartments - This place far exceeds the thought you might have on a motel style property. It is really shaping up to be more of a resort with many features being added to enhance the accommodation, including a new outdoor area. It was a fantastic option for a stay in McLaren Vale, which I would recommend.
Salopion Inn - Housed in an old homestead, it has had a refit to turn it into a lovely setting for an evening of great food and wine.
Sealink - We experienced a very quick trip of approximately one hour on what was for us a very calm day, which is not always the case. If you really don't like the idea of sea travel you can fly, as they do have a small airport on the island. The ferry has a good cafe and free wi-fi with a good connection.
Kangaroo Island Seafront Resort - A great location just a short drive from the ferry. Depending on when you arrive in, an overnight is a good idea before setting out on the island.
Clifford Honey Farm - Honey production is popular on the island and Cliffords is one of the best, with an educational section and hands-on experience for kids.
Kangaroo Island Spirits - On the outside it doesn't look like much but the rustic approach to this experience definitely works. I'm not a gin fan but I managed to taste my way through a few samples and create my own blend. The gin produced by Jon and Sarah Lark is found on the spirit list in many of Adelaide's top establishments which suprised me, as it is hard to fathom how such a small distillery can produce such an award winning gin from a backyard business. It's worth the stop for a bit of fun.
Aurora Ozone Hotel and Apartments - Plenty of room choices for a short or longer stay. It is a real hub of the island with a really popular restaurant which buzzes at night and serves really good food.
Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary - 250 acres of fence sanctuary purchased by a conservationist, this is home to koalas which you can view form a Koala walk, kangaroos, echidnas, bats and possums.
Admirals Arch and the Remarkable Rocks
- Two landmarks of the island. It's a really nice walk to reach Admirals Arch, with views of the dramatic coastline and resident seals along the way.
The lighthouse has an amazing history with three old lightkeepers' houses available now as cottage stays. These keepers of years gone by received deliveries of supplies every three months which were delivered by ship and winched up the side of the cliff. You can imaging how challenging that would have been in this rugged location.
Kangaroo Island Wilderness Retreat - An eco-friendly resort with comfortable accommodation, licensed restaurant and a real feeling that you are staying in the wilderness. An overnight stay will definitely be an experience with the nocturnal walKs held by the rangers.
Majestic Roof Garden - Located close to Rundle Mall this hotel is a 4 star option which is really well appointed with a nice rooftop garden and a delivery service if you wish to enjoy food and beverages and watch the sun go down.
Mercure Grosvenor Hotel Adelaide - A historic hotel located almost directly across from the Casino and the Convention Centre and Adelaide Oval. The hotel is also home to the Ibis styles which is a budget option. The rooms are compact but clean and well appointed. A good option for a good location and you can use the facilities of the Mercure. The location is also where you will find parking for Hertz rental, so it's an idea location if you want to hire a vehicle and explore further.
Oaks Horizon - Just a short distance form the Mercure, this apartment hotel is idea for longer stays and families or groups of friends. The apartments are fully appointed with a kitchen and laundry in each one. There is also a pool and small gym available.
Mayfair Hotel - A touch of glamour in the city with this magnificent old-world hotel. This is the place to stay for a real treat. However, if it's a bit out of your budget you can always experience high tea by prebooking or enjoy a signature "honey pot" cocktail in the Hennessy bar on the top level.
Sean's Kitchen - Anything created by Sewn Connolly is going to be good and Sean's Kitchen certainly lives up to his reputation. It's in a really funky setting and I can highly recommend anything off the menu - it was all outstanding.