Bring the family
Clamber aboard the horse drawn tram at Victor Harbor and travel across the bright blue sea to Granite Island. Whizz down Glenelg’s colourful waterslides at top speed. Visit Australia's oldest chocolate making company, Haigh’s. It is interesting and delicious!
Hungry for more? Pick luscious red strawberries at Beerenberg Farm in the Adelaide Hills then head over to Melba’s Chocolate Factory. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to try something sweet straight off the production line.
South Australia has all the ingredients for a memorable family holiday. Bike ride on the beach, paddleboat along the River Torrens, learn to surf at Middleton, camp on the Murray River or hand-feed giraffes at Monarto Zoo.
Zoos and wildlife parks
There are zoos, wildlife parks and sanctuaries across the state, starting with Adelaide Zoo - just a 15 minute walk from the heart of the city. The zoo has a huge variety of animals that the kids will love, including Australia's only giant pandas, Wang Wang and Funi. You can take a behind the scenes tour, watch animals being fed and venture into the bird aviary.
Cleland National Park, Gorge Wildlife Park and the Hahndorf Farm Barn are all found in the Adelaide Hills and offer lots of hands on experiences.
Urimbirra Wildlife Park is on the way to Victor Harbor is home to Australian wildlife, including freshwater and saltwater crocodiles, snakes, lizards and wedge-tailed eagles. From Victor, take the horse-drawn tram across the causeway to Granite Island for a penguin tour at the Granite Island Recreation and Nature Park.
Just out of Murray Bridge is Monarto Zoo - an open range zoo with many animals from Africa. Press your face up against the glass of the chimpanzee enclosure and watch as they chatter and play. See the tall and lanky giraffes as they eat leaves from great heights - or even your hand.
Parks and playgrounds
Discover one of the many great playgrounds that surround the city centre and North Adelaide.
There are so many to choose from, we've got a whole page dedicated to Playgrounds and Picnic spots in Adelaide, including Bonython Park, the Bush Magic playground and Belair National Park.
Bigger adventure playgrounds are a great treat for children too. St Kilda Playground is north of Adelaide and is a fun-filled day for the whole family. You might need a whole day in fact to try out all of the equipment and cool slides.
To the south, there's Greenhills Adventure Park near Victor Harbor and further afield, Monash Adventure Park in the Riverland.
Hop on a bike
Feel the wind through your hair and sunshine on your face as you cycle along the Linear Park bike path. If you don't have a bike, don't worry - you can hire one for free.
There are more than 500 bikes available for hire in the Adelaide City Bikes fleet and you can hire one from 14 city locations, including the Adelaide Zoo.
To hire a bike, all you need to do is show some identification (driver’s licence, passport or student card) and fill out a form. Then a bike, a helmet and lock are yours for the day. Visit BikeSA for more details.
Brilliant beaches and coastal escapes
Taking the kids on a beach trip in South Australia is easy. Most places along the coast are close to a beautiful beach. The thought of fish and chips, sand castles and ice cream will have the kids wriggling with excitement.
Adelaide's metropolitan beaches are at Glenelg, Henley and Semaphore. Glenelg is just a tram-ride away from the city centre, and there are plenty of things there to keep kids entertained - aside from the great beach. A water feature in the centre of Moseley Square is great in summer as is The Beachouse, with it's waterslides, dodgem cars, a carousel and arcade games.
Henley Beach is a great spot to start or finish a bike ride,with the Linear Trail nearby. The kids might like to catch squid off the jetty with a little bit of help from the grown-ups.
Semaphore Beach is also home to carnival rides, arcade games and a vintage carousel, plus a large expanse of green foreshore which is perfect for a picnic or fish and chips from the beachside kiosk. Take a ride on the steam train that puffs along the shoreline.
South of Glenelg is Brighton Beach which is also home to Jetty Road (not to be confused with the Jetty Road at Glenelg). In February, the Brighton Jetty Classic
swimming competition is on. This popular event attracts many swimmers to
Kids can enter for fun, while serious swimmers can compete
for prize money. Check out the Brighton Jetty Classic Sculptures while
you are there. See the colourful artworks on display by the beach.
Choose your favourite artwork for the People’s Choice Award.
Along the southern coast is Port Noarlunga beach and in summer, the place the be is under the shade of the jetty with all the other families. If you love getting out, or under the water, you can snorkel or scuba along the heritage-listed Port Noarlunga reef.
Museums and galleries
Walk along North Terrace and stop at the South Australian Museum. Be dwarfed by huge dinosaur skeletons. Gape at the incredible giant squid. Learn about the courageous Antarctic Explorer, Sir Douglas Mawson and space travel with relics from astronaut Andy Thomas’s space adventures.
The South Australian Museum, Art Gallery of South Australia and Adelaide Festival Centre put on plenty of shows for the little ones. Regular exhibitions and START art workshops will get them creating masterpieces. Something on Saturday performing arts and crafts’ workshops will have them grinning from ear to ear.
In Port Adelaide, you'll find the National Railway Museum and Maritime Museum. It's a fabulous family destination, with sites close together and within walking distance. Keep an eye on the river. You may see a pod of dolphins.
Hit the road
Yorke Peninsula is the perfect spot for a family holiday. With 700 kilometres of coastline there are plenty of great beaches to visit and beach shacks to stay in. The kids will love searching for blue swimmer crabs and exploring Innes National Park. Head over to the Eyre Peninsula to experience aquatic wildlife at its best and swim with tuna, Australian sea lions, cuttlefish or even sharks.
Kangaroo Island is also great fun for kids. Meet the country's largest colony of sea lions at Seal Bay. Sand board down the exhilarating slopes of the “Little Sahara” sand dunes.
Learn to surf on the Fleurieu Peninsula at Middleton beach or enjoy fish and chips at Horseshoe Bay, Port Elliot.
Take a canoe or kayak to explore the Coorong and enjoy a spot a fishing along the banks of the Murray River, all the way up to the Riverland.
Creep into the eerily lit, damp, dark caves at the Naracoorte Caves National Park
on the Limestone Coast. Learn about stalagmites that could reach the
roof if they tried. See the stalactites hanging on tightly so they don’t
Head north to the Barossa and check out the Whispering Wall at Williamstown and its amazing acoustics. At Burra in the Clare Valley, visit the site of what was once the world's biggest copper mine.
Camp under the stars in the ancient Flinders Ranges
and travel further north and take the family fossicking for opals at Coober Pedy. Hear their shrieks of delight when the kids find one.
You’ll be counting down the sleeps for your holiday to begin.
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Things to do
Here are some great family-friendly things to do while exploring South Australia.
There are plenty of events in South Australia. Here are some ideas you might like.