Adelaide, the capital of the South Australia, was founded in 1830s along the banks of Torrens River. It was first settled by free settlers; now, the population of Adelaide is 1.28 million, making it the fifth largest city in Australia. Adelaide is a wonderful coastal city, being just 15 minutes’ drive away from the Gulf of St. Vincent. Within the city itself, the beach is a perfect hang out spot for most Adelaideans. I was lucky to be there during spring since the temperature hovered between the comfortable 17 and 25 degrees Celsius. The cool and calm breeze of Adelaide is perfect for stroll or even jog.
Apart from being the city with the most number of parks in Australia, Adelaide is also known as the city of churches, which are grand and impressive. I was also informed that Adelaide is also the city that has the most number of cafes in Australia. As I strolled down the streets and roads of Adelaide, I lost count on the number of cafés that I passed by.
For those who are passionate about arts and festivals, Adelaide is the ideal place for you. All year round, Adelaide organises festivals that are related to art and music such as the Adelaide Festival of Arts and Adelaide Writers Week. For those who are into art, the art galleries are normally set up according to respective genres. Mostly based in the city centre, visitors may want to check out the Art Gallery of South Australia, located at North Terrace, as well as Tandanya Aboriginal Cultural Institute, where they display the contemporary artworks by members of Australia’s aboriginal community.
As a progressively developed city, Adelaide’s road connections are very well-organised, the roads are normally straight and the street signs are very clear. Therefore, for those who are visiting Adelaide will not have any problem driving around the city. If driving is not for you, then there is always the bus or tram.
The bus connections in Adelaide are quite extensive thus convenient for commuters. There are buses that can connect you to suburban areas; however, one small wrong hop in the bus can get you lost, so make sure you check the bus guide before hopping onto one or bring a map with you.
By the way, the reach using the tram network (called the Glenelg Line) is rather limited compared to the bus network since the tram only runs from one end to another end of the city, connecting the city and selected suburban areas.
Adelaide is actually a magnet for students from overseas who are attracted to Australia’s quality tertiary education. There are several institutions of higher learning can be found in the city such as University of South Australia, University of Adelaide and Flinders University of South Australia, all offering professional and technical courses. In fact, I learned that Adelaide hosts large number of foreign students studying in these universities, especially from Malaysia, considering the cost of living in Adelaide is far more reasonable compared to the other cities.
In terms of the Muslim population, they are in minority, started with the Afghans who immigrated to South Australia to become cameleers. They built a mosque called the Afghan Chapel but later changed it into Adelaide Mosque, located on Little Gilbert Street. It was built in 1888 and happened to be the oldest in Adelaide. The Muslim community here are able to enjoy halal or kosher food since the city hosts several halal dining establishments by Muslims from different regions of the world. One such eatery is “Swinging Bowl of Satay” restaurant, owned by a Malaysian from Kelantan.
Azam, the owner of the restaurant, has been living in Adelaide for almost 16 years, while the restaurant has been in business for three years. Located between Adelaide’s most famous shopping centre, Rundle Mall, and University of South Australia, “Swinging Bowl of Satay” offers Malaysia’s popular fares for Adelaideans to enjoy.
Adelaide is indeed a city that visitors will definitely fall in love with, a relaxed city that offers respite without the dreaded metropolitan hustle. For what it’s worth, Adelaide offers a fine life rooted in the beach culture and festivals, enriching both Adelaideans and tourists alike.