Finding ourselves in another new state was beyond exciting. Both of us have been looking forward to arriving in Adelaide for some relaxing, exploring and more relaxing.
South Australia is known for its crazy, unpredictable weather during winter and our time in Adelaide was just that. Rain then sunshine, then wind, more rain and some more sunshine.
We decided to stay at Brighton. Arriving at the caravan park, it was almost empty. The park was beautiful, big and the choice of spots to park was entirely up to us. So of course, the one place we both decide was right next to the playground, meaning we could sit at our van and still be able to watch the kids. After the van was set up it was time to find a shopping centre for some last-minute birthday shopping. Master Halen turns 3. An easy dinner, a touch of cake making, a bit of present wrapping then an early bed.
Good morning and happy birthday Halen. We had planned to visit the zoo today but we woke to some rainy and cold weather. We enjoyed indoor birthday celebrations with a day filled with new toys, cake and lots of giggles. Sometimes a day at home is just needed.
Another not so nice morning with a bit of wind and rain, so we took this opportunity to go for a drive and explore the south coast. We drove from Brighton to Christies Beach, ducking into each beach or seaside along the way. Once we arrived at Christies, we spotted a large indoor playcentre. With the rain pouring outside we knew that this would be our afternoon. We paid our way into Play ‘n’ Fun and let the kids run wild. Us parents ordered some coffees and made friends with the warm, comfortable lounges. This place was perfect.
Finally, a decent morning. We took this chance to go and check out the Barossa. Tom did a wine tour through the Barossa a few years ago and we were unable to have our two little ones watched, so Tom offered to drive while Claire enjoyed the taste of the Barossa. Thanks to some recommendations, our first stop was “Z Wines”. We paid a small fee for the full tasting. The lady behind the bar was just wonderful, answering all our questions and filling us with so much winey information. After sampling a few wines, we decided to purchase a tasting platter for us but also for the kids. After a short wait we were greeted with cheeses, cured meats, chocolates, biscuits, smoked salmon and complimenting wines. The kids’ platter was just perfect. Fairy bread, meat slices, cheese slices, biscuits complete with 4 glasses of different juices, milk and water. Such a great idea to involve the kids in the fun.
Feeling more than satisfied from our visit to “Z” we went for a drive through the country to find Maggie Beer’s farm. Being one of the most well signed places there was no way we would miss it. Walking straight through to the farm house gift shop, we quickly set ourselves up at an outdoor table overlooking the lake and took turns in walking around sampling all of Maggie’s goodies. Tom happy with a coffee and Claire trying Maggie’s own apple cider, we ordered the kids a chocolate brownie and filled our bellies once again. The wind and rain picked up so unfortunately, we missed out on walking around the farm. We will be back.
Deciding it was probably time to head back home (Claire feeling more than a little happy). We had one more stop at Pindarie Wines. This was one of the most beautiful vineyards with views to die for. Having the owners set us up on large lounges in front of a wood fire, we settled in for one last glass of wine.
Adelaide has hands down the most amazing kids’ playgrounds and they are EVERYWHERE!! Every corner, hidden nook or open space you will find a playground. About 80% of these playgrounds are also wheelchair friendly which is something we haven’t seen a lot of.
Our playground of choice today was a good hour drive from where we are staying. Sounds crazy to drive an hour to a playground, right? Well, I can guarantee that it was well worth it and we would do it 100 times over. This gem is called Morialta Conservation Park and it is more than just a playground. We started our adventure here with a short 1.7km return walk to the Morialta Falls. This walk was just beautiful, criss-crossing over the flowing creek while walking through trees filled with koalas. We were greeted at the end of the trail by a large, full waterfall. There are a few other walks to do through this area but we were ready to get these kids to the epic playground (Muka Muka Rrinthi).
Now this playground is made completely by timber with a Native Australian theme. Each of the 5 sections of the large playground were themed and told their own story. A large snake (Halen’s favourite), eagle nests, kookaburra nests, climbing boulders and Claire’s personal favourite Frog Island. Watching the kids run and explore this unique spot was just a joy. Keep your eyes peeled around the park, there are plenty of hidden carvings, statues and structures that will make you look twice.
Today was mum’s day out and by day we mean a couple of kid free hours. Claire took off to Westfield in Marion to have some time out and do a touch of window shopping and errand running. Marion Westfield is huge and will easily cater to any need. While Claire was busy checking every… single… shop. Tom took the kids on a few errands himself before letting them go for broke on the playground at our camp site. It’s amazing just how much use our kids can get out of one playground.
With another nice morning and a beautiful day ahead of us, we jumped at the chance to go to Monarto Zoo. Unlike a regular zoo, Monarto is incredibly large, incredibly spacious and more like a touch of Africa than you think. Not understanding the concept of the zoo to start with, we opted to walk. After viewing the meerkats and watching the chimps play we decided to trek it through to the see a rhino. Well that was silly. See Monarto is so big there’s actually a courtesy bus that will take you from animal to animal, it’s a guided tour run by volunteers that fill you with animal facts and information. You do have the option to jump off the bus for a closer look but they only come past every half hour. So, after not even being able to see the rhino, we were left with only the option to walk to the closest bus stop. At least we love walking. Luckily Varli was in the pram and Halen was happy (most the time) to sit on Tom’s shoulders.
Finally, we made it to the function centre, it was surrounded by Tassie Devils and we could view the giraffes, ostriches and oryx while we waited. Jumping on the bus, we realised straight away we should have jumped on to start with. Not only was the host on the bus funny and informative, the kids just loved it so much more than walking. They were up high enough to view everything. The bus also takes you right through the animals, exactly like an African safari. We weaved our way through lions, painted dogs and zebras. The whole park was fantastic. Like any full day at the zoo, by the end we were exhausted. Glad we walked a bit, very happy for the bus tour and going home really happy with our day out.
We decided to spend our last rainy day in Adelaide checking out the city and Glenelg. We enjoyed just driving and viewing the sites from our warm dry car. We had a last lot of errands to run and washing to do before we took off for our next destination.
As miserable and cold as the weather was, we absolutely loved Adelaide and it’s straight on the list to visit again.