Adelaide is one of Australia’s most fascinating cities and no trip to the city is complete without visiting its historic port.
Port Adelaide became the first place in South Australia to be named a historic precinct and it is a great place to explore during your holidays in Adelaide.
The port is home to the biggest group of colonial buildings in South Australia and the architecture on show in this part of the city is truly breathtaking. Guided tours are available if you want to be shown around Port Adelaide, but it is just as enriching an experience to head to the area without a guide and explore it for yourself.
Port Adelaide’s history dates back to 1839, with the construction of the Old Port Road. Just a year later, the new McLaren Wharf was opened, with the arrival of the South Australian Company’s boat Guiana marking the occasion. The vessel brought a symbolic offering of two boxes of tea and spices, and thousands of people headed to Port Adelaide to watch a historic moment for this part of the world.
Today, Port Adelaide remains a working seaport and is located just 14 km to the north-west of Adelaide, making it an easy journey for anyone staying in Adelaide. As well as the port itself, Port Adelaide is home to 18 historic sites that are listed on the South Australian Heritage Register, as well as three hotels, five shops, offices and warehouses.
Port Adelaide is a must see for museum buffs. The National Railway Museum is one of the main tourist attractions in this part of Australia, while the South Australian Maritime Museum has so many exciting exhibits that it could easily be worth a day out in its own right.
If you have a penchant for aviation, you might like to visit the South Australian Aviation Museum in Lipson Street, near the railway museum, for myriad aircraft, engines, propellers, historic displays and memorabilia.
Finally, the Australian Museum of Childhood is a good day out for all the family to enjoy.
Food and drink in Port Adelaide
Port Adelaide is famous throughout South Australia for its 19th century pubs and hotels, which have been extremely well preserved over the years. Without a doubt, one of the most popular places to go to is the Port Dock Brewery Hotel, while the Waterside Workers Hall is also definitely worth checking out.
Events in Port Adelaide
Port Adelaide plays host to a number of extremely popular events, with the Port Festival as one of the best attended dates on the annual calendar – it takes place each year at the beginning of October.
The Port Adelaide Enfield Twilight Christmas Parade (21 November 2015) is often considered to be one of the best events of the festive period in South Australia, while the Semaphore Kite Festival (2 to 5 October 2015) and the Semaphore Street Fair (29 November 2015) are also worth visiting.
The coast around Port Adelaide is well known for its dolphins and hiring a boat in the hope of seeing some of these wonderful creatures is one of the best things to do in Port Adelaide.
If you prefer to stay on firm ground, the North Haven Marina is a great place to sit outside in the sun and watch the dolphins. Alternatively, climb the steps of the local lighthouse for fantastic views across the waters with dolphins at play.
You may want to make the most of the Port River’s rich marine environment –hiring a kayak is a fantastic way to do this.
Sport in Port Adelaide
As is the case for much of Australia, sport is extremely popular in Port Adelaide and Gepps Cross is home to the State Sports Park.. Various sporting events take place here, such as national track cycling and hockey competitions.
Golf lovers will find plenty to enjoy on a trip to Port Adelaide too, as the courses at Valley View and Regency Park are among the best in South Australia.
An Aussie rules football team, the Port Adelaide Football Club, plays its home games just outside Port Adelaide itself at the redeveloped Adelaide Oval.