WEEKEND AWAY: ADELAIDE
Despite being one of Australia's quieter cities, Adelaide has a lot to offer. With flights readily on sale and accessible, it's perfect for a romantic weekend away that won't break the bank.
The Adelaide Hills -
It's hard to believe that the Adelaide Hills wine region is only a 15 minute drive from the heart of the city. Rolling hills and a lush landscape make for a scenic drive and there are plenty of stops along the way.
If you're after something boutique, visit Ngeringa Estate for a tasting of some of Adelaide's best bio-dynamic wines. This second generation, artisan winemaker produces a great selection of whites, reds and sparkling. A major standout is their desert wine, Altus ($40 a bottle), which is incredibly drinkable and unique.
For a wine lunch visit the infamous Bird in Hand winery. Known for their sparkling, the kitchen serves up a family style menu paired with a selection of their wines. Seated in a light filled room with views over their vineyards, it's a great way to spend an afternoon.
Art Gallery of South Australia -
Located on the North Terrace, this gallery has a stunning collection and is relatively small which means you can knock it over in an hour. With works from Australia and a strong International collection, it's got something for everyone. The best part is entry is free.
Adelaide Botanic Garden -
A short walk from the Art Gallery of South Australia lies Adelaide's extensive Botanic Garden. With so many species to see and incredible architectural structures throughout, it's a fabulous way to spend a morning - allow time because there's lots to explore.
This crazy hotspot is making waves in the dining scene nation-wide. It's modern take on southern african food is innovative and fun. Charred veggies and smokey meat dishes are sweet and robust yet delicate and the menu caters for all taste buds. http://africola.com.au
Adelaide Central Market -
It would be cheeky to say that you could probably fill up on free samples at the Central Market alone, but it's true. Cheese shops, bakeries and smallgood makers are extremely generous with customers trying their produce. It's quite easy to spend hours here and we recommend purchasing some cheese, bread and fresh fruit for a picnic in the botanic gardens. http://www.adelaidecentralmarket.com.au
Mother Vine -
This is a unique wine and tapas bar that is in the heart of Adelaide's dining district. Offering a fine South Australian collection of wines, it's a great place to snack before dinner. http://www.mothervine.com.au
If you're after something strong, hit up Nola for it's whiskey selection. With over 75 to choose from, the menu offers both Australian and American whiskeys. Craft beers are also on tap and there's a New Orleans inspired food menu if you're peckish. http://www.nolaadelaide.com
The Adelaide Hilton Hotel -
The quintessential Adelaide Hilton has had a recent refurbishment making it one of the most reliable choices for accommodation in Adelaide. A mix of understated luxury and functionality are classic Hilton touches with the suites having fabulous work stations and plush beds. Bathrooms are modern and large and the city views are unbeatable. Service is efficient and warm and the hotel is located central to Adelaide's CBD and next door to the Central Market. It also has some really fabulous in-house dining on offer:
Coal Cellar and Grill -
Adelaide Hilton's well-known restaurant has had a recent face lift and it's extremely popular. With a slick design and a sexy glass-box wine cellar, this restaurant serves up some of Adelaide's best steaks. Book in advance because it can get busy. http://coalcellarandgrill.com.au
The Collins -
Word on the street is that The Collins has the best cocktails in all of Adelaide and it's probably true. This uber-cool bar has panoramic views of Adelaide's downtown city and has just had an architectural revamp with a glossy new bar and lounge area. The menu is extensive but if you're feeling lucky, trust the staff to make up something original for you - they know their craft. http://www.thecollins.com.au
I travelled and stayed as a guest of the South Australian Tourism Commission and Hilton Adelaide.