KoalaPOM

What to do and where to stay in Adeliade? March 2016

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    Hi everyone, just after some of advice.. we're hoping to come over to Australia from UK in mid to late March for a three week holiday. We fly to Melbourne so it makes sense to do a week there first, we're hiring a car and thought it would be nice to drive up to Adelaide via the Great Ocean Road, anywhere nice to stop on route?? we hope to spend 5 days in Adelaide. Then drive back to Melbourne for the last week.

     

    Both of us have applied for a 189 visa (Awaiting Decision) This will be the first time we've been to Australia, basically were looking to do a bit of a tour of the best sites. If we were able to get a visa we'd look at moving to either eastern Melbourne or Adelaide Hills as a place to live, I did see a place called the Stirling hotel which looked nice, this looked a good base to see the hills and go off exploring the areas like Aldgate. Has anyone got any advice of places we can stay or particular places we should see, restaurants, etc... we both in early and late 30s so happy to look at bars, eating out, wine regions, nights out etc.

     

    Any advice on the weather in mid March? I hear its a Mediterranean climate..also any info on good hotels, tourist sites to give us a feel of life in Adelaide would extremely grateful : )

    Can anyone recommend a place for a full English breakfast, most hotels we've looked at don't seem to offer breakfast or its just continental, am i asking to much lol!

     

    Cheers

    KoalaPOM

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    We don't actually live in Adelaide (yet - just waiting on visa skills assessment at the moment!) but went out last March. We had great weather, a couple of grey days which were in the low 20's but mostly high 20's and a few low 30's days. It was very nice! We too really want to live in the hills and Stirling is beautiful. We actually stayed in a caravan park for some of it down near West Beach. It took very little effort to get up in to the hills though. It was also very nice staying right beside the beach as we have young children so as it was a holiday for us it really suited. It is cooler in the hills though and one day we left the coast at 25 degrees and it was 18 and shady to begin with in the hills, I was not well dressed for it! Soon warmed up though as the day went on. We loved Cleland Park (had an obligatory koala cuddle and fed wallabys) and the view from Mount Lofty was amazing. We loved it all really but if you like asian style food then central market and the food places towards the rear were really good. Have fun, very jealous you are heading over, we can't wait to be back! Oh and if you love wine, then McLaren vale was great too:jiggy:

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    Hi Becks,

     

    What a lovely post, thank you ever so much for the info, weather sounds great, we've been looking around Stirling, Aldgate, as we really like the look of Adelaide and the hills, although hard to judge from the internet, we go to Spain/Ibiza and love the Mediterranean climate so feel weather wise it will suit us, we currently live in the Countryside close to a small village with post office couple of pubs etc, so we'd prefer to be somewhere outside of the city, I guess it depends on work and what jobs we can find. I'm so looking forward to seeing the koalas and general wildlife, we really love the outdoors and Australia wildlife and fauna is pretty unique. I'm just looking a the Cleland Wildlife Park, I'm adding that to our priority list of things to do Including Mount Lofty! Food wise I don't eat much Asian food although I don't mind a chicken korma 'sorry curry lightweight' I had seen a few places we'd like to eat but happy to try anything.. Is it your EOI your waiting on? I guess for us its hard applying for a visa when you've never even been to the Country before but from people who have been, friends and family tell us we are making the right choice, we don't have children yet so I guess it makes it a bit easier. Also looking forward to the McLaren vale I guess well need a taxi lol! Let me know how you get on with your application?

     

    All the best : )

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    Ocean Road is well worth it - we did Adelaide > Melbourne and stayed in Warnambool for a night to split up the drive - that was a good half way point and meant we could stop at some of the tourist stops - the Seven Sisters is very impressive and Apollo Bay is pretty too. There is a good "forest" section of the drive too. You'll love it.

     

    Adelaide wise - sounds like you have enough to do, but you may want to tie up heading down to Victor Habor as part of your McLaren Vale day - really nice coastal town with good views, cafes, etc. The drive is good and there is a wildlife park down there too, Urimbirram as an alternative to Cleland, it's a bit smaller I think but they have lots of roos, koalas and a salt water crocodile which is a small one but still quite un-nerving. A drive down there, lunch in Victor Harbor and then an evening meal back in McLaren Vale :)

     

    This summer has been consistently very hot and I suspect March is going to be very warm too so hats, sunnies and sun cream is a must.

     

    In the hills, Grumpys is a good pizza place and Handorf is a fun, though often busy, historic German town.

     

    City wise - Henley Beach, Semaphore, Glenelg and Brighton are all good city beaches with places to stop and eat/drink - you can pretty much spend a day just driving the city coastline.

     

    Enjoy the visit!

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    Hi Zebedee, Thanks for all that info, everything sounds really good, love pizza so I'm on a mission to try Grumpys now, must try that mexican pizza with a beer : ) Happy days lol hopefully we can do 2 days coastal towns, beaches etc, maybe 1-2 days in the hills, Love the idea a day down in McLaren Vale with lunch in the harbor and an evening meal too. I guess it will be a bit of a squeeze with only 7 days but Ill do my best : ) good call on the sun cream I guess its like Mediterranean late Aug/ Sep/Oct still hi 20s low 30s, will check all those other areas you mentioned on google and have a look.

     

    Thanks : )

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    Agree with what zebedee said about combining McLaren Vale and Victor Harbor. Victor won't take too long sightseeing wise, so long as you leave enough time for a wander round Granite Island.

     

    I'd defo have a day in the CBD or a good part of the day in there. Get in early and hit Central Market, fab to wander round, buy some fresh breads, cheeses and if you wanted meats for lunch and go grab a spot under a tree somewhere. Lots of other goodies to choose from also. That's something we love to do when we are in the city for a day out. Then jump on the tram for a few stops and head to North Tce. and the State Library to see the Mortlock Wing, its stunning. And then just down the road the Adelaide museum and art gallery are free entry and worth an amble round IMHO. Then wander on down some more and go into the Botanical Gardens for a stroll. Hopefully you'll find your way to the green house/cactus garden and the formal gardens and wisteria walk. And the trees in the gardens are amazing, huge things.

     

    http://www.adelaidecentralmarket.com.au/

     

    http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/botanicgardens/Visit/Adelaide_Botanic_Garden

     

    http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/site/page.cfm

     

    http://www.samuseum.sa.gov.au/

     

    http://www.artgallery.sa.gov.au/agsa/home

     

    Stirling is a lovely town. Its good for getting most places and does set you up nicely for access to the hills. All the small towns nearby, Aldgate, Bridgewater and so on won't take you that long to explore IMHO. Stirling is the busiest and the shops are lovely but its not more than a full morning or afternoon exploring those. And a drive round the neighbourhoods won't take too long. If you are here at the right time you may catch one of the local famers markets, its in Stirling once a month, fourth Sunday of the month iirc. There are also lots of other farmers markets around and about if you happen to be around in the area. Most of the other small towns are of the kind you drive through and blink and you'll miss them ;) Many of the houses are set at the end of tracks so not visible from the road and some of them the only reason you know you are in a 'town' is because you drive past the local fire station. There isn't anything to see in some of them in that respect. Places like Mylor have a very popular cafe (lots of cyclists), a lovely old general store and an oval but little else to keep you busy really unless there is an event on. Go further out to places like Hahndorf which are bigger and have more going on. Hahndorf you can do in a morning or afternoon IMHO. A day there would be too much for me. We usually get there early, get a long park in a side street for the car and wander up and down the main street, then go have lunch and head off elsewhere for the afternoon.

     

    http://www.weekendnotes.com.au/stirling-markets/

     

    http://www.weekendnotes.com/adelaide/markets/

     

    I'd go up to Mount Lofty if you are up in the hills. Even if you are only there for 15 minutes to see the view, if its on your travels, stop in and soak up the view of Adelaide.

     

    A walk we have done and enjoyed but you need to be prepared and set off early in the warmer weather is Waterfall Gully. Good walking shoes and not minding steep hills is a must, as are plenty of drinks etc. You don't have to go all the way up, just take in the waterfalls and trails even half way up is lovely. But don't set off at 11am on a 33C day. It won't be fun.

     

     

    http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/parks/Find_a_Park/Browse_by_region/Adelaide_Hills/Waterfall_Gully

     

    That link has a side bar menu with loads of other places of interest btw :)

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    Hi snifter, what a lovely post, I've just started going through your links, thanks for putting it all together, really appreciate it. I first thought about 3 or 4 days in Adelaide, but I think we will need to do a week, so week in Melbourne, week in Adelaide, then last week back in Melbourne hopefully we can fit everything in, Ive started looking towards Adelaide first as we think we'd prefer it, drawn to the food, climate and we hear there is a good community feel, although never been to any of these places. I might jump onto poms in oz and ask the same question about Melbourne. Just looking at the weekend notes on food and things to do, wow should keep me busy for a few days : )

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    Totally agree with all Snifter says, we spent a month in and around Adelaide March 2015 having a good look round and enjoyed every minute of it. Stayed in Aldgate in a rented apartment to live the local lifestyle and get a feel for the place, great, everyone was so friendly and helpful. Went to the hotel mentioned in Stirling for an evening meal a few times, reminded me of the Beefeater inns in the UK, busy at weekends in the food areas, all the villages were nice and peaceful, Adelaide was great and the beaches around empty nearly. In all a good place to start looking round, visas are applied for with the hope of living in the outer Adelaide area. Will probably go back this year for another look round and a bit more of a holiday. Go for it, I will be amazed if you don't enjoy it.

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    Hi Sprinter, sounds great, especially at the beefeater, lol None of the hotels seem to do a cooked breakfast or am I being too British just wondered have you applied for your visas? and waiting for a decision? I'm still not 100% on where we would go as we need to see both Melbourne and Adelaide, you get varying opinions on which is best, but if it was Adelaide then I'm sure somewhere around Sterling or Aldgate would be lovely, as we like the Country lifestyle although most Aussies seems to want to be near CBD or is that just a misconception.

     

    Cheers

    KoalaPOM

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    A full English breakfast isn't the norm here in hotels and guest houses that I've ever seen. You may find it in the odd place but I'd not expect it as standard anywhere tbh.

     

    Honestly, in hot weather or even in the 20's, scoffing a big cooked breakfast wouldn't be my way of starting the day. In the middle of winter perhaps but if its a hot spell, I doubt they will get much call for it in hotels and so on.

     

    You would probably have more luck finding an English style pub or cafe and having it for a brunch or late breakfast.

     

    ETA - I think thats a misconception re Aussies being around the CBD. The greater Adelaide area sprawls for mile upon mile. Its vast.

     

    A country lifestyle here is very different to UK country living. You've the fire risk to contend with in the fire season which seems to be starting earlier and earlier and going on longer in recent years. And the risk is very real up in the hills and in country areas. Also the facilities for these places are often on the small side or will require a trip to the city or outer lying suburbs which given the distance between 'towns' can be quite a drive. And schooling in the smaller of the towns is often a bit hit and miss. We love the country area around Adelaide and looked at some rural properties and so on out in the much smaller towns like Mylor, Meadows and the like. Honestly, as lovely as it is, one local shop and a small servo and a half hour drive to be anywhere with any other facilities were a stretch even for me who is well used to rural living on Exmoor, Dartmoor and the Quantocks in England. Lots of people live in houses at the end of a dirt track here and you could drive a road for a few miles and not see a house but they would be there somewhere out of sight.

     

    The larger towns like Mount Barker, Stirling, Hahndorf and so on offer better facilities and have that lovely small town feel without being too remote and cut off from things. Smaller places near them can also be nice. Nairne, Aldgate, Bridgewater and so on. Schools and facilities are also more abundant in these places. Although I don't consider Stirling or Mt Barker to be 'country' living but that is me, perhaps others do think of them like that. I view them as towns and unless you are out in the sticks a bit, its definitely a town feel.

     

    Aussies all tend to be near or in the main cities though. Its just how the country has been settled and grown and where the bulk or the work is for most. Drive an hour or so from Adelaide north, south or east and you start to hit a whole lot of empty space soon enough and its vastness cannot be underestimated. Driving for hours (and I mean hours) without touching the indicator or brake pedal is a weird thing to do.

    Edited by snifter
    eta

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    Hi Snifter, sorry I didn't see a email to say I had another reply but thank you that's all very interesting, breakfast wise Ill have to cook my own lol for the towns I think somewhere like Stirling or Aldgate would be lovely and hopefully we will explore this area for a week in March : )

    I expected a problem with fires, I guess similar to family I have in California Hills, they have the same problem. Ill look up some of those other areas you mentioned so thank you for that : )

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    I have just returned from a week in Melbourne and walked passed this pub and thought of you! :biggrin:

     

    [ATTACH=CONFIG]9611[/ATTACH]

     

    [ATTACH=CONFIG]9612[/ATTACH]

     

    [ATTACH=CONFIG]9613[/ATTACH]

     

    Wow what an amzing find! thanks Jessica Berry that's amazing, we're going to Melbourne first so definitely going there, and will post some pictures, you know its a good breakfast if they have hash browns! thank you so much!! I shall report back and let you know how my full English was lol

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    Any chance you will be here early enough for any of the festivals? I think most will be over by then, pity as the place is so vibrant during the fringe and womad and seems a bit dead afterwards. Mind you that will also make accommodation cheaper so not all bad.

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    Any chance you will be here early enough for any of the festivals? I think most will be over by then, pity as the place is so vibrant during the fringe and womad and seems a bit dead afterwards. Mind you that will also make accommodation cheaper so not all bad.

     

    The Adelaide Fringe is on until 14 March, so they might be able to catch some shows and visit the Garden of Unearthly Delights, depending on when they are around in Adelaide.

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    If you are travelling between Melbourne and Adelaide, Mount Gambier is an interesting place to visit. See the thread below for a bit more info...

     

    http://www.pomsinadelaide.com/forum/welcome/47132-great-ocean-road-drive.html

     

    When we visited we stayed at Colhurst House, which I would recommend. The lady that manages it does a great breakfast (fresh fruit salad, yogurt, homemade muesli, eggs, bacon, mushrooms, tomato, toast, juice, tea and coffee) and also makes a homemade cake each day that guests can help themselves to throughout the day. When the OH had to go to Mount Gambier with work he asked to stay at Colhurst House again and he was looking forward to the breakfast! While he was staying, there was another man in Mount Gambier for business who came to Colhurst House just for breakfast, but stayed somewhere else!

     

    http://www.matthewshotels.com.au/colhursthouse/

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    Hi Jessica, that's really funny, I've just booked that place literally 10mins ago then came on here to check the updates wow, we're going to use this place as a stop over on the drive from Melbourne so chuffed to read your post that's awesome : ) Did you say you'd done the drive? once we leave Mount Gambier we were thinking of driving up A66 to get to Adelaide Hills that's where stopping, unfortunately we will miss the festivals, we will be in Adelaide for 7 days then we will stop at Colhurst house on the way back as a half way point before returning to Melbourne..

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    Hi Rammygirl, I was looking at some of the festivals but unfortunately we will miss them as we arrive after.. thanks for the information though : )

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    Hi Jessica, that's really funny, I've just booked that place literally 10mins ago then came on here to check the updates wow, we're going to use this place as a stop over on the drive from Melbourne so chuffed to read your post that's awesome : ) Did you say you'd done the drive? once we leave Mount Gambier we were thinking of driving up A66 to get to Adelaide Hills that's where stopping, unfortunately we will miss the festivals, we will be in Adelaide for 7 days then we will stop at Colhurst house on the way back as a half way point before returning to Melbourne..

     

    That is funny, I reckon we must have a telepathic vibe, because I was reading your post on PIO about where to stay in Melbourne while I was staying there next to The Langham! We always stay on Southbank in Melbourne, we really like that area and the vibe along the river.

     

    I have done the Great Ocean Road twice, once back in the 90's when I lived in Melbourne and I did it from Melbourne, but not all the way to Adelaide. Then when we emigrated we had a bit of a holiday before we arrived in Adelaide and did the Great Ocean Road as part of a small group tour from Melbourne to Adelaide that we booked from the UK (although it was such a small group there was only the tour guide and us!). On that tour we stayed in Coonawarra (wine region).

     

    When we went to Mount Gambier last year we drove the A66 way through Naracoorte and Coonawarra going there and then came back the Robe (stopped off at Robe for fish and chips, nice place to stop off/stay as well) and Kingston way (you must see the big lobster, Australia has a bit of a bizarre fascination with things like this!!).

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    That is funny, I reckon we must have a telepathic vibe, because I was reading your post on PIO about where to stay in Melbourne while I was staying there next to The Langham! We always stay on Southbank in Melbourne, we really like that area and the vibe along the river.

     

    I have done the Great Ocean Road twice, once back in the 90's when I lived in Melbourne and I did it from Melbourne, but not all the way to Adelaide. Then when we emigrated we had a bit of a holiday before we arrived in Adelaide and did the Great Ocean Road as part of a small group tour from Melbourne to Adelaide that we booked from the UK (although it was such a small group there was only the tour guide and us!). On that tour we stayed in Coonawarra (wine region).

     

    When we went to Mount Gambier last year we drove the A66 way through Naracoorte and Coonawarra going there and then came back the Robe (stopped off at Robe for fish and chips, nice place to stop off/stay as well) and Kingston way (you must see the big lobster, Australia has a bit of a bizarre fascination with things like this!!).

     

    Hi Jessia Berry, thanks for the info on the GOR that was really funny about PIO and staying next to the Langham, going to stop there for 5 days Southbank looks really nice ill defiantly check out some of the bars and Restaurants while I'm on Southbank, also not to far from the Elephant and Wheelbarrow pub lol

    Hopefully there will be some nice shops ect.. but ill do my best to have a good look round. Will be stopping in Mount Gambier twice on the way and on the return, somebody was saying the GOR is best from Melbourne to Lorne then after that it tends to be covered by trees so you don't see the ocean. Looking forward to the big lobster and fish and chips, although don't eat fish so hopefully i can get a burger or something : ) Sorry for the late reply been really busy and haven't had time to come on here, but appreciate all your advice, I like the telepathic bit lol Must be a good omen for moving to Australia! All the best KoalaPOM!

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    Hi Jessia Berry, thanks for the info on the GOR that was really funny about PIO and staying next to the Langham, going to stop there for 5 days Southbank looks really nice ill defiantly check out some of the bars and Restaurants while I'm on Southbank, also not to far from the Elephant and Wheelbarrow pub lol

    Hopefully there will be some nice shops ect.. but ill do my best to have a good look round. Will be stopping in Mount Gambier twice on the way and on the return, somebody was saying the GOR is best from Melbourne to Lorne then after that it tends to be covered by trees so you don't see the ocean. Looking forward to the big lobster and fish and chips, although don't eat fish so hopefully i can get a burger or something : ) Sorry for the late reply been really busy and haven't had time to come on here, but appreciate all your advice, I like the telepathic bit lol Must be a good omen for moving to Australia! All the best KoalaPOM!

    Take some extra layers for Mount Gambier as it can be nippy at night We had a friend from UK who was there in September say she was cold ! Travel agent had told her Oh you won't need a jacket in Oz ,luckily she had listened to her sister who lives in Oz and brought her layers !

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    Thanks Philly47 will do : ) typical brit not thinking Mount means high up aka cold lol

    its not that high up actually lol but a lovely spot so enjoy

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    somebody was saying the GOR is best from Melbourne to Lorne then after that it tends to be covered by trees so you don't see the ocean. Looking forward to the big lobster and fish and chips, although don't eat fish so hopefully i can get a burger or something : ) All the best KoalaPOM!

     

    The GOR is amazing even when it disappears in to the trees; it's a beautiful drive. If you have the chance to see the film Oddball before you come and make sure you stop off at Warrnambool even if it's just for an hour or so (we stayed overnight when we went Adelaide to Melbourne and didn't know about the penguins but we'd definitely make it a proper stop if we do it again).

     

    And there's a great ice-cream parlour in Robe so you'll be fine if you don't do the fish.

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    That's great cheers flossybeth ill have a look at this wow you get to see penguins Ill check that out + ice cream too.. is there a certain place you need to get to for viewing them or is just around Warmambool? thanks : )

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