People in Sydney wondered why I would go to Adelaide. In their opinion, there wasn’t much to see or do. However, I had always intended to come visit an old friend that I hadn’t seen in years and so all that didn’t matter much. Plus, she had mentioned that they were surrounded by wine country. So, I was already sold!
Getting here, you quickly notice that the feel of the city is quite different – with a slower pace and smaller buildings. It reminds me quite a bit of Ottawa, where I grew up; a big(ish) city with a small town spirit – and largely populated by its suburbs. Given that it faces West, you also notice the difference in sunsets. I’m not usually one for photos of sunsets but the cloudy skies at night this time of year make for quite a colourful show and awesome gradients.
And yes, there are wineries galore within a short drive of the city. We spent a beautiful afternoon in the McLaren Vale region and sampled quite a few good wines. Sitting outside in the sunshine, enjoying a cool breeze, delicious wines and good conversation with an old friend – what’s not to love?
It was also my chance to finally see kangaroos since one of the wineries had them in captivity on their land. There’s something fun about getting to see wildlife that is truly unlike anything back home. It makes it a bit more real; yes, you really are on the other side of the planet.
I’m a big fan of a good food truck. (But, really, who isn’t?!) So, when we found out that my visit was timed perfectly with the start of the ‘Tasting Australia’ festival, which meant food trucks gathered in the main square downtown, I was quite excited! The day was perfect for it. (However, I was told it was not the best weather to be out… *insert confused look up at the sky here* Right, because a few clouds and a slight breeze make it very difficult to enjoy the sunshine…)
I wish you could smell some of the photos since the air was filled with the most amazing spices and flavours! I wanted to try everything! Unfortunately, that was impossible, so we settled on sharing items from 3 trucks: mini burgers (slightly bigger than sliders) with bourbon braised brisket, paella with chicken, chorizo and prawns (the massive skillet in which it was prepared is pictured below), and a grilled cheese sandwich with mushrooms and balsamic. Everything was outstanding! If you’re a food truck fan, Adelaide might be your town since these are regulars around the city.
The main part of the festival included all kinds of food, wines and beers from all the regions around the state. An afternoon sampling good food, listening to live music and sitting in the sunshine is one well spent!
After the festival, we wandered the mall. (Now, this is where the language gets a bit confusing since, in Canada, that means an indoor shopping center. Here, it’s the main pedestrian street outdoors. However, it’s lined with stores and so it’s pretty much an outdoor shopping center. So really, it kind of means the same thing in both places. But people still seem confused when you explain your version…)
Yesterday, we spent a rather windy day at the beach. I experienced the first bit of rain since I got here (even though every day was overcast or rainy according to locals and the forecast). But, it only lasted 20 minutes or so and then the sun came out again. I could get used to that kind of rainy day!
Clearly, those doubters in Sydney were right. Adelaide only has good food and amazing wine and beautiful beaches (even in wind and rain) and pretty awesome sunsets. So, don’t bother visiting… locals probably prefer having it all to themselves anyway!