Before coming to Adelaide we heard mixed reviews from the Aussies and hadn't actually talked to any travelers who had been here. Some said it was beautiful but we heard often that it was boring with not much to do
. I do see where they are coming from since for a city of 1 million it doesn't actually seem that large and the downtown area is nothing compared to Melbourne, but I really love it here. The city was actually purposely designed before being built so it is very organized and easy to get around. The weather has been gorgeous since we've been here, sunny and high 20s, there are lots of parks and the Torrens River is beautiful. We hired bikes (in Aus they say 'hire' instead of 'rent') and cycled to Henley Beach, following the river the whole way. Even better, the bikes were free, as Adelaide has a 'Free City Bikes' program. You just leave your ID and they give you a bike and helmet for the whole day! Really a great program.
We've also visited the Museum of South Australia and the Migration Museum, which were so full of information you could spend days there. The shopping here is nice, they have a huge pedestrian street called Rundle Mall which is full of people all the time. We spent an afternoon at the Botanic Gardens which is beautiful and visited the National Wine Centre to learn a bit about the industry. They have a digital 'make your own wine' program where you have to make decisions all the way through the growing, picking, fermenting, and bottling. My shiraz was graded as:
. More likely to be sold at garden centres than in wine shops. You have single handedly destroyed the reputation of your company. Please seek professional help before making more wine."
Nick's riesling was described as "average" with "very little fruit aroma" and a "harsh flavour" - "disappointing".
So I guess we didn't learn much!
We have hooked up with 3 other travelers, 2 girls from Germany and 1 from Switzerland, and are renting a car to go to Kangaroo Island for 5 days, so the next blog will be about that! It is said to be one of the best places to see animals in the wild. Apparently koalas are so plentiful they are nearly falling out of the trees!
We've been in Adelaide now for 4 days and it is nothing short of lovely! We stayed the first four nights at a hostel which was very nice. It was small and very friendly, and since they were out of dorm rooms we had a twin room, which was only $3 more and nice to have our own room. I think it was our first real room we have stayed in just the two of us since beginning our trip! We thought we would give couchsurfing a try after hearing about Megan's great experiences so now we are at our first ever host, Chris, and he is great! There are 3 other travelers here as well, two from France and one from Albuquerque. Chris actually did a semester abroad in Montreal at Concordia and is a big hockey fan which Nick loves. They plan to watch some playoff action tomorrow, a big treat for Nick.