Don't just read about Adelaide getaways... get out and try one! Whether you want something close-by or feel like going on a real adventure, we’ve rounded up five great places to explore in South Australia that are within driving distance of Adelaide.
For a nearby city escape, full of history.
Distance from Adelaide: 20-minute drive (14 kilometres south of Adelaide).
One of the easiest and most popular day trips out of Adelaide is Port Adelaide. Port Adelaide is a beautiful State Heritage Area, so taking a guided or self-guided tour along its beautiful streets is a must. Be sure to pop down to the Fishermen’s Wharf Market on Sunday. It’s packed full of stalls selling locally made goods and plenty of delicious food to try (or take home with you).
If you’re a bit of a history buff, then be sure to visit the local museums including the National Railway Museum, where you can wander through a glamorous passenger carriage once used on the Intercontinental Express.
Don’t miss: Test your nerves on a Ghost Tour around Port Adelaide (once known as "Port Misery" because of all the deaths that occurred). Wander through the most haunted buildings in the city and listen to grisly tales.
For great beaches and lush rolling scenery.
Distance from Adelaide: 1-hour drive (40 kilometres south of Adelaide).
Picture green, rolling hills bordered by beautiful, rugged coastline that’s perfect for swimming and surfing. That’s the Fleurieu Peninsula! Soak up some autumn sunshine along the crystal clear white sand of Normanville beach, spot kangaroos in the Deep Creek Conservation Park and be sure to pack a picnic and your swimmers when venturing to the picture-perfect Ingalalla waterfall. Only a one-hour drive from Adelaide, It’s no wonder the Fleurieu Peninsula is a such a popular day trip.
Don’t miss: Jump on a horse-drawn tram along the Causeway to Granite Island and be sure to stop by the Penguin Centre when you’re there.
For a slice of Europe in South Australia.
Distance from Adelaide: 30-minute drive (27 kilometres south-east of Adelaide).
Want to escape to Europe without the long-haul flight? Then Hahndorf is the perfect day trip for you! This pint-sized town (or should I say stein-sized town) is Australia's oldest surviving German settlement and is packed full of authentic experiences. Wander the beautiful main street and browse the adorable local shops. Pick up some German sweets at Hahndorf Sweets or buy an authentic cuckoo clock made on site, from the German Village Shop. Be sure to visit in autumn for an incredible show of colourful foliage lining the streets.
After you’ve worked up an appetite, stop-by the Hahndorf Inn for some delicious German meals matched with famous German beers and desserts. Try the Rinder Rippchen (their famous beef ribs) or the Giant Bratwurst Hot Dog and finish off with some Apfelstrudel (apple strudel) – yum!
Don’t miss: Visit Beerenberg Farm and hand-pick your own delicious, fresh strawberries (picking season runs November to April).
For close encounters with Australian wildlife.
Distance from Adelaide: 30 minutes by plane or 2-hour drive to Cape Jervis followed by a 45-minute ferry (210 kilometres south-west of Adelaide).
With more than one-third of the island protected by conservation areas and national parks, Kangaroo Island is a wildlife lover’s paradise. Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary is the place to go if you want to get up close to local wildlife. Here you can spot kangaroos, get selfies with koalas or take a guided Nocturnal Tour.
Venture down to Admiral’s Arch, for the most ‘Instagrammable’ location on the island. This rock-meets-sea scenery is a favourite hang-out for wildlife so keep your eyes peeled for local fur seal colonies.
Feeling a bit adventurous? Then don’t miss the Kelly Hill Caves. These other-worldly caves are home to some visually striking stalagmite and stalactite formations. Join a guided walking tour or jump on an extreme adventure tour where you’ll crawl through a maze of some of the smaller caves.
Don't miss: While in the Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary don’t miss the ‘Koala Walk’. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see up to 20 koalas huddled together in one tree.
For a true outback Australian experience.
Distance from Adelaide: 5-hour drive or 1-hour flight (468 kilometres north of Adelaide).
So, we may have a been a little bit cheeky with this one... You’ll probably need more than a day to do a roundtrip to the Flinders Ranges but we just couldn’t resist putting it in!
If you’re wanting a true Aussie experience, then this is the place to be. You can say goodbye to lush green coastlines and hello to bright red sand and dusty open spaces as you venture away from Adelaide and into the outback.
The best-known landmark in the Flinders Ranges is Wilpena Pound. This massive natural basin looks like a giant crater. But don’t be fooled, the rim is actually made up of the stumps of huge mountains, believed to have once been as high as the Himalayas. These tall, rocky mountains provide truly breathtaking views of the ranges, making Wilpena Pound an excellent location for hiking.
Want to stay the night rather than drive there and back in the same day? The Wilpena Pound Resort is an outback haven located inside the beautiful Flinders Ranges National Park, and you can easily book a room through AccorHotels. After staying the night, you might find it hard to leave.
Don't miss: When visiting the Flinders Ranges you can’t go past Cooper Pedy. Most of this town has been built underground in order to the escape the scorching summer heat, creating an underground maze of shops, museums and homes. Be sure to visit these local dugouts while you’re there or try your luck at panning for opals.
Looking for somewhere great to come back to after your day out exploring? AccorHotels can help you find the perfect Adelaide accommodation for you.