When starting our discovery of Adelaide this week, we were pretty much surprised. The city is bigger than I expected, probably because it's been 3 months since we've actually seen anything close to it. But not only the size surprised me, also its beauty. Adelaide is full of colonial & suburbian buildings which I truly only know from movies. I absolutely love it! It breathes so much flair, elegance and cosiness. On our first stroll through the city we started off with handing over our van to Kmart's car shop for its next service, lucky for us this was right in the city centre so halleluja for a free parking day!
At first we were a little lost as every street seemed to have some nice offerings. We went to look for the Central Market, one of the most famous attractions in Adelaide and to my experience a bit comparable to Barcelona's Boqueria at La Rambla, only less crowded and less Fuet's & Manchego (mmmmmm..). We treated ourselves with a nice piece of Gouda and took a stroll in Rundle Mall (Adelaide's shopping street).
A few days before that we heard that the annual Solar Challenge was on again so we decided to have a look at the finish, huuuuuge coincidence as we were just there when the Dutchies arrived and won the race! It was so awesome to be a part of that joy and to speak Dutch again ;) We met a couple of Belgians too, who were in fact the parents of the Belgian competitors, so of course we waited for our team to arrive. They got in 3rd and again it was crazy to share their relief, happiness and pride, great job! We were totally in for joining their party at the Belgian Beer Cafe later that night, well if it wasn't for our feet saying 'No way Jose" after we had pizzas. (I guess you can say we're getting old)
Our van was still in good shape by the way, he got 4 new tyres and is ready to rock and roll some more! That's why the next day we took it to the Adelaide Hills, sounds fancy huh? Well it is in fact quite fancy! Stunning views over Adelaide and some nice spots. We visited the Gorge Wildlife Park as this included holding a koala ;) The park itself wasn't the fanciest you've ever seen, but it's got many walk through enclosures where you can pet & feed kangaroos, wallabies & wombats. This is a really nice feature, especially for kids of course and thus also for me ;) I loved it, ok I didn't really feed many of them as I guess they were pretty stuffed already from all the kids trying to shove their pet food down their throats, which I'm not sure if it's very good for the animals.. Then the koala holding! I was a bit reluctant at first but when the caretaker arrived with the koala in his arms nibbling on some Eucalyptus I kind of wanted to hold it too. I was lucky to have a good spot pretty much in the beginning of the line so I wasn't going to wait here for an hour. It's a bit sad on the one hand for the koala as it's being dropped with someone else like every minute so I'm not completely approving with it. But I have to admit when it was my turn and the fluffy koala sat in my arms it was kind of cool, it's super soft, very cute + the eucalyptus it was playing with opened my nostrils!
I'm not at all an expert but the koala seemed pretty relaxed and so was I, probably because of the eucalyptus leaves as well ;) Damned now I miss the fluffy little guy! I honestly really liked it, please don't hate me. Soo in conclusion, maybe not the most animal friendly park of all times but a fun & different experience from the big ones for sure!
We spent a little more time in the city centre and decided to visit the South Australian Museum, wow this is a really big museum showing all kinds of exhibitions. The exploring just kept going and going, and the absolute nuts fact about it is that the museum is totally free! I'm not the biggest museum kinda gal but a visit to this one is definitely worth your time. We also visited the Gaol, which is an old prison where more than 300,000 people were kept until the 1980's. Pretty cool but chills multiplied by a thousand as they used dummies/mannequins again, my life got shortened several years but interesting place to see when in Adelaide!
As the weather is awesome these days, it's about 31 degrees, we decided to make a beach stop as well and headed to Glenelg. A very nice little beach town with a shopping street and a couple of cafes to enjoy a drink near the ocean. Real holiday vibes + they had Froyo, meaning it was a happy day! ;)
With one day left in Adelaide we drove, read: crawled as our bus doesn't like hills, to Hahndorf. Which is a German town in the Adelaide Hills, with some German inspired shops, bars &
restaurants. Cute street buuuut mainly focused on 50+ people so we just drove around through the lovely vineyards and huge villas before we decided to go for coffee at Henley Beach. Henley is a
small beach town, a bit like Glenelg but smaller, still a very nice square where I enjoyed sipping my latte with a beautiful view and we believe we even saw some dolphins hanging out!
To conclude: Adelaide did not disappoint but now we are ready to start our journey towards Melbourne :)