(Last Updated On: February 18, 2022)

Adelaide is Australia’s City of Churches and often isn’t as high on tourist’s Australia bucket list as larger cities like Sydney or Melbourne. In fact, two days in Adelaide is a perfect amount of time to get a sampler of this beautiful South Australian capital city – though there’s certainly much to continue to entertain you if you chose a longer stay. 

In fact, Adelaide blew me away, particularly punching well above its weight in the food and bar scene as well as a coastline that absolutely rivals Australia’s most beautiful beaches.

The city is small enough that you can walk to most locations within the central area and there is a fantastic tram service that regularly departs for the coastal regions such as Glenelg Beach (around 30 mins from the city).

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Where to stay in Adelaide

There are a couple of location options for those visiting Adelaide. If you’re wanting to stay by the beach and commute into the city, then consider staying around Glenelg Beach where you’ll be able to easily catch the tram into town and back whilst you enjoy the pristine white sands and crystal clear waters of Adelaide’s most popular beach.

For those preferring to tackle Glenelg as a day trip, staying anywhere in the CBD will make access to the city’s culinary delights nice and easy.

If you’re planning a foodie holiday with lots of dinner reservations, then definitely take this option.

I stayed at the Hilton Adelaide which was lovely and has a fabulous outdoor rooftop pool, but you’ll find all the major hotel providers to choose from such as the Sofitel or the new Crowne Plaza – all of which look great.

What to do for two days in Adelaide?

Visit the Adelaide Central Market

The undercover food paradise that is the Adelaide Central Market is an unmissable to any two days in Adelaide itinerary. The market is one of the Southern Hemisphere’s largest undercover markets selling fresh produce.

One of the things I love the most about this market is that there are so may stalls serving up free tasting samples or small plates of their specialty which means you’re able to stroll around and try many different dishes.

I recommend the falafel and hommus from Real Falafel and the incredible prosciutto and mozzarella panini from Lucia’s as a starting point. If you’ve got time, consider a guided tour of the market which will give you the background of this wonderful attraction as well as plenty of opportunities to taste from the best vendors.

 The Adelaide Central Market is located right next to Chinatown and trades Tuesday – Saturday.  

Two red poles hold up the entrance sign that says Central Market

Eat at Africola

Now, Adelaide is chock full of amazing restaurants and food adventures, but you’d be hard pressed to find a more unique dining experience than the extremely popular Africola.

Specialising in South African cuisine, this restaurant will have you smacking your lips and tasting flavours that your little tastebuds have never experienced before. 

You’ll sit down and the waiters will bring out a selection of dishes from the menu. You can advise of any food allergies, but otherwise just let them bring the food so you can really sample a wide variety.

Some of our favourites were the Crispy Chicken Tea Sandwich with Peri Peri Drippings, the Padron Peppers and the Peri Peri Chicken with Mpumalunga Fire, Boom Chakalaka. Honestly, everything brought to the table was incredible.

Africola is hugely popular, so do make sure that you book in advance to avoid missing out.

Crispy Chicken Sandwich and Kingfish Sashimi dishes on the table

Soak up the sun at Mosely Beach Club

Glenelg is the most convenient beach to travel to from Adelaide’s CBD with a tram line that drops visitors off right at the foreshore.

Whilst there’s plenty in Glenelg to amuse you, the Mosely Beach Club summer installation brings a bit of European Riviera fun to South Australia with striped umbrellas and lounges on the sand by the Glenelg Jetty that feels oh so much like being back in Nice.  

There’s no better way to marvel at the beauty of the spotless white sands of the Adelaide coast than with an Aperol Spritz in hand. 

You can book a lounge area at the Mosely Beach Club, as it does get packed. However, there are areas for walk ins so if you’re travelling solo or in a couple, you’ll probably be able to find a seat if you’re patient. 

Visit for a few sundowners, and catch Adelaide’s golden hour from this unique vantage point.

A white sign on the sand saying "The Mosely" with striped umbrellas on display behind the sign.

Grab brunch at Crack Kitchen

Just like bars and restaurants, Adelaide has plenty of options for coffee and brunch fare. Except on Sundays. I was flabbergasted that the city basically is entirely shut on Sunday morning – which is PEAK BRUNCH TIME!

Luckily, Crack Coffee was around the corner from my hotel and just happened to be recommended to me by the lovely waiter who served me at Africola… and it was open. Thank the coffee gods for that!

Jokes aside, Crack Café pumps out strong, milky lattes that definitely hit the spot for me. And their waffles with milk sorbet, chocolate and salted caramel were a work of art on a plate.  

Just be prepared that if you visit on a Sunday, they will be busy since they seem to be the only place open!

A bowl full of belgian waffle, vanilla icecream and raspberry garnish from Crack Kitchen

Experience Italy in Adelaide at Osteria Oggi

It might seem odd after eating somewhere as adventurous as Africola, that we opted for an Italian restaurant for our second dinner.

But let me tell you that Osteria Oggi is no basic Italian restaurant. This place is like a slice of Italy in Adelaide.

The dishes are authentic, made perfectly and whilst they might be familiar foods such as ragu or carbonara, I guarantee you’ve never tasted those dishes quite like this before. 

The carbonara came out with a raw egg on top of the plate ready to be stirred in fresh at the table. Mixed with a juicy guanciale (pig cheek) instead of the basic bacon you get in most run of the mill Italian restaurants, this dish blew my mind. I’m still drooling just writing this.

The mark of a real good authentic Italian restaurant is often found in their selection of apertivos and Osteria Oggi definitely delivers in this department, too.

A long dining table with places set. Above the table is a canopy of leaves and festoon lights

Take in a view of the city from the summit of Mt Lofty

For breathtaking views of the Adelaide CBD stretching all the way out to the coastline, a visit to Mount Lofty Summit is a must.

Located out in the Adelaide Hills area, I’ve included this one in my list of things to do in Adelaide, because even if you don’t make it further than Mt Lofty to explore the Hills, the view here should definitely be on your bucket list.

The summit also affords energetic visitors to undertake one of the walking tracks around the area ranging from a quick 15-minute circuit to a longer, more arduous tramp.

To get to Mount Lofty from the CBD, you can either drive there (plenty of parking) or catch a bus and walk the rest of the way to the summit.

A vista of perfect blue sky and the distant coastline captured from Mt Lofty Summit

… just outside Adelaide

Consider extending your stay in Adelaide and surrounds further so that you venture further afield into the magical Adelaide Hills region where you can visit Australia’s oldest surviving German settlement, Hahndorf. It truly feels like you’ve been teleported across the world to a beautiful European old town where sandstone buildings and traditional German food are in plentiful demand.

The Adelaide Hills are also home to many wineries, with the region specialising in Pinot Noir varietals. For foodies, exploring the Beerenburg Strawberry Farm is also a must, where visitors can pick their own fresh strawberries and enjoy local produce at the Beerenburg cafe.

Getting to the Adelaide Hills from Adelaide CBD is an easy 30 minute drive from the city if you’ve hired your own car or it will take 50 minutes on the public bus.

An European looking pub with a sign out the front saying "The German Arms Hotel"

… and a little further afield

Adelaide is blessed with several major wine regions only a short drive away. One of Australia’s most beloved wine regions, the Barossa Valley is a mere hour away from the CBD. If you have time to extend your stay and feel like a couple of days out in wine country, this is the place to do it.

McLaren Vale is also less than an hour’s drive from Adelaide’s CBD and whilst the Barossa is arguably the most famous, this wine region also rates highly with visitors that love their Shiraz.

Rolling hills covered in vineyards in the Barossa Valley

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Two Days In Adelaide - Emma Jane Explores
Two Days In Adelaide - Emma Jane Explores

14 Comments

  1. ANUKRATI DOSI

    Africola is one restaurant I googled after reading this post. And man, it is such a vibrant place. Thank you for sharing.

    Reply
    • Emma Jane Explores

      Vibrant is exactly the right word for Africola. It was absolutely a treat for all the senses!

      Reply
  2. Coralie

    This brings back memories of the lovely city of Adelaide, but I didn’t know it was the city of churches!

    Reply
  3. Terri

    I loved Adelaide when I visited long time ago. It really has a different feel from the big cities like Sydney.

    Reply
    • Emma Jane Explores

      Totally agree, it has a very different vibe! Glad you loved it too 🙂

      Reply
  4. Ophelie

    It’s so interesting to discover Adelaide with you! Indeed I didn’t know much about it and I would be happy to follow your steps there!

    Reply
    • Emma Jane Explores

      Thanks lovely – it definitely is a lovely option to explore a smaller city in Australia!

      Reply
  5. Krista

    Adelaide looks like so much fun to explore for a few days. And the food looks amazing too!

    Reply
    • Emma Jane Explores

      OMG. The food was incredible. I am feeling hungry just thinking about it!

      Reply
  6. Rachel - Rays of Adventure

    Adelaide looks like a great place to visit! I didn’t get a chance to visit when I was last in Australia, but I’d love to go back to visit. Looks like there’s some great food and beaches. A trip to the wine region sounds great too!

    Reply
    • Emma Jane Explores

      I think that happens to a lot of people because there’s just so many places in Australia to visit! But it is definitely worthy of a stop on your next trip down under 🙂

      Reply
  7. Elena Pappalardo

    Wow, Adelaide looks so beautiful! I’d love to take a scenic drive to the wine region. What a wonderful way to spend the day.

    Reply
    • Emma Jane Explores

      The wine region is STUNNING. I’ll be doing a whole post on exploring the Barossa Valley soon 🙂

      Reply

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