South Australia: What you need to know
Where is it?
South Australia is in the southern, central part of the country. It is one of Australia’s largest regions, with direct access to every other state. However, large parts of the region are not heavily populated, with many rural areas which are amongst Australia’s driest and most difficult to live in. The largest city in the state is Adelaide, where the majority of South Australia’s residents live.
The weather varies throughout the region. In Adelaide and the other most southern points, the climate varies greatly between seasons, with lots of rainfall in the winter (July to August) and very warm temperatures in the summer. However, further inland the climate is much hotter and drier all year round – if you’re going there to look for work or on an organised trip, make sure you have a clear destination with contact details and a large supply of water and sun cream.
How do I get there?
Adelaide airport is the main route into the region, with cheap domestic flights connecting cities that are a long distance away over land. There are frequent shuttle buses to the city centre, where you’ll find most accommodation.
Most of the larger, flexible east coast bus passes do not include a trip to Adelaide, but a coach trip from Melbourne will cost around 50$. Another popular route into the region is the Great Ocean Road; you can rent a car or camper van to travel this route with friends, or take a more direct inland route if you need to get there more quickly.
Is it a good place to learn English?
If you’re coming to South Australia and hoping to learn English, Adelaide will be your destination. It is a much smaller city than Sydney and Melbourne but still popular with travellers, so there are language schools and courses available. In regional parts of the state, it will be hard to find learning facilities.
Australia’s government operate an Adult Migrant English Program (AMEP) for new residents, which may entitle you to up to 510 hours of free language tuition. Make sure to visit this official site and register soon after you arrive in Australia to ensure you can start learning as soon as possible!
What else is there to do?
The Great Ocean Road either starts or finishes in Adelaide and attracts many tourists from around Australia, with the choice of renting a vehicle to drive yourself or taking part in a day trip. The region is also known for its wineries and Adelaide has a reputation for arts and culture – find out more in our guide to Adelaide here.
Famous Exports: Julia Gillard, the former Australian Prime Minister, migrated to Adelaide with her family in 1966 at the age of 5.
Moving to Adelaide: 5 things you need to know
So, you’re moving to Adelaide. It’s the state capital of South Australia, the fifth largest city in the country and has a reputation for individualism and a unique culture that make it stand out from the rest of the country. Outside of Sydney and Melbourne it is one of the most popular parts of Australia to live and work abroad.
The only question is…what next? Moving to a new city can be daunting, so here’s 5 essential steps to get you started.
1.) Where to live
Adelaide is a city that is growing very quickly, so there’s new accommodation available all of the time.
Aldinga: This coastal area boasts one of Adelaide’s best beaches, making it a popular place to live for people moving to the city.
Glenelg: Glenelg is a suburb by the beach, a short distance from the city centre. It is popular with tourists as well as locals, so there’s a lot of hotels, bars and restaurants as well as plenty of accommodation.
Hallet Cove: One of the suburbs south of the city centre, Hallet Cove is located on the coast with a good beach and a lot of shopping options.
Norwood: A 40 minute walk from the city centre, Norwood has a lot of pubs and restaurants to choose from and is home to an annual food and wine festival every March.
Mount Barker: The largest town in the area of Adelaide Hills, Mount Barker is cheaper than other parts of Adelaide and has a lot of options for entertainment. It is located just over 20 minutes from the city centre and the coast.
2.) Where to work
Adelaide’s main industries are manufacturing, health and social care and retail. It is the centre of Australia’s defence technology industry, with a lot of jobs in this sector for skilled workers. Outside of the city, some parts of South Australia have a large agricultural trade which offers seasonal skilled and unskilled work.
3.) How to get around
Adelaide is located centrally within Australia and is well-connected to other major cities by road and rail. The main airport, Adelaide Airport, is located 7km outside of the city centre, serving international flights as well as domestic routes to other cities in the mainland, allowing locals to travel quickly and cheaply between different cities for work.
Adelaide’s public transport system is organised by Adelaide Metro. Use their site to plan your journey with timetables and ticket prices. The metro system includes bus, road and rail links through the city centre and to surrounding suburbs, making it easy to commute to work from just outside the city.
For journeys to and from the rural parts of Western Australia, use TransWA to plan your journey.
4.) What to see as soon as you arrive
Take a walk through the city centre and then head the coast. Here you’ll find Aldinga Beach, one of the few beaches in Australia that it is legal to drive on – so long as you keep under the 10km speed limit.
When you want to get further away from the city, Adelaide is located at one end of the Great Ocean Road. Connecting Adelaide and Melbourne, the road is home to some of Australia’s most famous landmarks, including the 12 Apostles rock formaiton and the cliffs at Cape Bridgewater. You can experience the Great Ocean Road as part of a one-way or return trip from Adelaide, or rent a car with your friends to drive it yourself. Just check this guide to find out whether your home driving license is valid in Australia first!
5.) How to spend your free time
Adelaide is a cultural city with a lot to entertain art and history fans. The Art Gallery of South Australia, the South Australian Museum and the Migration Museum tell the story of the city and the state it is in.
When you want to relax or experience some wildlife, check out Adelaide Zoo or take a walk around the city’s botanical gardens, a 125 acre open space in the middle of the city.
In general Adelaide is a lot quieter at night than other major cities, but the coast is where you’ll find a lot of the best bars and restaurants. Henley Square and Henley Beach are other popular destinations with a lot of places to enjoy great food and spectacular views.