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Adelaide Itineraries South Australia
Experience Oz Presents

The Best Time to Visit


by Experience Oz staff

While it's not always at the top of most holiday agendas, South Australia's capital, Adelaide, is a charming, smaller-sized city that has a strong European influence and a reputation for some of the best food and dining experiences in the country.

Making for a refreshing change from the more tourist-heavy cities on Australia's east coast, Adelaide not only has its own distinctive atmosphere and local highlights but also is privileged to be surrounded by multiple natural, wildlife and culinary attractions.

The city is located on the South Australian coast, which provides it with an overall moderate, Mediterranean-style climate. This helps to eliminate some of the dramatic temperature climbs during the majority of the year that many other Australian capitals face. Outside of a few extreme spikes during the summer months and some chilly winters, people are left with around nine months of comfortable climates.

The Best time to visit Adelaide South Australia city

It becomes a matter of selecting the optimal area within this time frame to get the most out of your journey when timing your visit to Adelaide. When combining a number of factors such as weather, events on offer, school holidays and more, it's our recommendation that the February-March period is the best time of year to visit Adelaide. But why? Let's take a more detailed look.

A brief summary of this article

Why Adelaide between February and March?

While February is one of the hottest months of the year in Australia on average, the latter parts of the month bridging into March tend to cool down to a seasonably warm level of comfort. Adelaide's geographical location works in its favour here.

While the first week of February still can boast days of surprisingly high temperatures in Adelaide, it still comes down to a reasonably comfortable average. Temperatures tend to settle around a 14°C minimum and 24°C maximum range without any of the humidity that plagues more northern cities.

As a result of this climate, Adelaide bases a large number of events during this season that gives a sense of liveliness to what is widely seen as one of Australia's typically more laid-back cities.

The Best time to visit Adelaide South Australia city

Some of the most popular events at this time of year include the Adelaide Fringe Festival, an annual celebration of all forms of the arts with a focus on the alternative and that encourages participation from all parts of the artistic spectrum. Running for an extended 24 days, it's the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere and serves as a showcase for independent artists from music, painting, sculpture, comedy, dance and much more all around the city.

The open-access nature of the festival means any interested party can display their talents, and as such, there's a huge array of parks, laneways and theatres serving as performance spaces for various art forms.

Regardless of if you have a specific interest in the arts or not, it's not hard to get caught up in the energy of the festival as the sunny skies make walking from one exhibition to the next a pleasant way to while away a few days.

The timing of the Adelaide Fringe Festival and its largely adult-oriented nature coincides with a lack of school holidays during this period. This also makes travel to Adelaide for independent adults far more enjoyable in February and March as well.

If you're planning to stay in the city or visit some of the popular attractions such as Adelaide Zoo or Monarto Zoo, shopping centres, Glenelg's foreshore or even Kangaroo Island, you'll typically benefit from fewer children (especially during weekdays) and a resulting less chaotic atmosphere in general.

The Best time to visit Adelaide South Australia Monarto Zoo

Monarto Zoo

Accommodation prices do tend to stay high during this period, however, as the combination of good weather and plenty of festivals generally draws multitudes of visitors to Adelaide and its hotels.

The other main natural drawcard that sits off the coast of Adelaide is Kangaroo Island, a wonderful showcase of diverse wildlife and natural scenery. The landscape of KI begins its transition from golden-yellow to green during this period and while there's an increased chance of rain this only serves to cool down the air and make the exploration process more enjoyable.

While we personally recommended winter as the absolute best time of year to visit Kangaroo Island, the February-March shoulder season is no slouch, either. The climate makes for pleasant conditions to get out and see the local seals and sea lions on a cruise where a splash or two of the water won't leave your bones chilled like winter will.

While Kangaroo Island can be self-driven, for first-time visitors a day tour or overnight tour is recommended as the costs of renting a car, paying for the ferry over, and doing so again on the return journey can quickly accumulate to make it far less economical than it may first seem.

The Best time to visit Adelaide South Australia Kangaroo Island

Remarkable Rocks, Kangaroo Island

Guided tours also have the benefit of being able to take you directly to the major highlights as navigating to them yourself can be a chore. It's important to note that Kangaroo Island isn't small, with 509km worth of coastline and a 155km diameter, there's a substantial amount of land to navigate to get to the best parts.

Lastly, a trip to Adelaide in February and March wouldn't be complete without mentioning the lovely seaside suburb of Glenelg. Boasting a quality beachfront, lovely foreshore and numerous unique shops, Glenelg is located around 20 minutes outside Adelaide's CBD and is a must visit for a leisurely day of fresh air and sunshine.

Couple this with the fact it's home to one of the most picturesque sunsets in the country, and extending a day into an evening won't even be questioned.

How long should I visit Adelaide for?

The answer to this will largely depend on two major factors, whether you're planning to keep to the city, or if you're wanting to incorporate a few day trips to surrounding destinations into your visit.

For the city-only option, 3 to 4 days is typically enough to see all the architectural and other local highlights. However, given Adelaide's central location near the Barossa Valley, Kangaroo Island, Hahndorf, Murray River, Victor Harbour and McLaren Vale, this could easily be extended into a week.

In all, how long you choose to spend in the Adelaide region will likely depend on how willing you are to open your wallet and to get out and explore. There are few better times to see a better cross-section of what Adelaide and its surrounds have to offer then February and March.

Lastly, if you're looking for a range of other things to do in and around Adelaide throughout different periods of the year, be sure to visit our main Adelaide region section to view and book all the available tours and activities online today.

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