Australian city spotlight: what's on in Adelaide?

With more than a month to go until classes start, now is the perfect time to explore your city and state. For students in Adelaide, the early months of the year bring a full calendar of events — everything from arts festivals to major sporting carnivals. We take a look at a few of the most popular events below.

Arts and culture

Adelaide Festival of Arts: With a focus on theatre, dance, music and visual art, Adelaide Festival of Arts offers a wide variety of performances and events over 18 days, including a number of Australian and world premieres. Highlights for this year’s festival include The James Plays, Groupe F’s stadium spectacular À Fleur De Peau, Pina Bausch’s Nelken (Carnations), Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo and Prehistoric Aquarium, and live performances by Sunn O))) and Magma. The festival also includes Adelaide Writers Week, the Unsound music showcase and the Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art.

When: 26 February to 14 March 2016
Where: Various locations around Adelaide

Adelaide Fringe: Held over four weeks during February and March, Adelaide Fringe brings together artists from around Australia and the world. The festival is held in pop-up venues scattered across the city, including warehouses, cafés, laneways, parks, galleries and theatres. The 2016 event will feature more than 5000 artists and 1000 events — from music, dance, theatre and film to visual art, magic, comedy, circus and cabaret.

When: 12 February to 14 March 2016
Where: Various locations around Adelaide

WOMADelaide: Celebrating its 20th year in 2016, WOMADelaide returns in March for four days of music, art, dance and culture. More than 30 countries will be represented across seven stages, with live music and dance performances, comedy, theatre and art installations. Other highlights include the Planet Talks series, which features live conversations about the environment and sustainable practice, as well as food stalls, cooking demonstrations and the Street in the Park — Taste the World restaurant. Tickets start from AUD$116.

When: 11 to 14 March 2016
Where: Botanic Park


Cellar Door Wine Festival: With more than 180 wineries, brewers and food producers exhibiting at the 2016 event, the Cellar Door Wine Festival allows you to sample some of the best produce South Australia has to offer. Held across three days, the festival features food and wine tastings, masterclasses, long-table dining experiences, a beer garden and food outlets. Tickets start from AUD$20.

When: 26 to 28 February 2016
Where: Adelaide Convention Centre

Clare Valley Gourmet Weekend: The Clare Valley Gourmet Weekend sees more than 20 wineries open their doors to showcase the region’s award-winning food and wine. Visitors are able to meet the local winemakers and learn about the region while enjoying regionally inspired cuisine and live music.

When: 13 to 15 May 2016
Where: Clare Valley

Tasting Australia: As one of Australia’s leading culinary festivals, Tasting Australia is held across South Australia — in and around Adelaide, as well as regional areas such as the Barossa Valley, Kangaroo Island, the Flinders Ranges and Eyre Peninsula. Some of the highlights of the eight-day festival include the ‘A Few of my Favourite Things’ tours, which allow you to experience the favourite food and wine spots of Australian culinary icons Maggie Beer and Cheong Liew; the Single Sites Dinner, where some of Australia’s best wines are matched with specially crafted dishes; and a range of outdoor dining events. The festival’s hub in Town Square offers daily cooking demonstrations and panel discussions on topics related to the food and wine industry.

When: 1 to 8 May 2016
Where: Various locations across South Australia

Sport and leisure

Clipsal 500: Australia’s largest domestic motorsport event, the Clipsal 500, sees Victoria Park Racecourse play host to more than 250,000 fans for four days of V8 racing. Held on the first weekend of March, the event includes eight feature races, along with stunt performances, motocross, autograph sessions and a driver parade. In addition to racing, expect plenty of live entertainment, including performances from Rob Thomas, Pete Murray, Peking Duck and Sneaky Sound System.

When: 3 to 6 March 2016
Where: Victoria Park Racecourse

Kangaroo Island Cup Carnival: In late February, Kangaroo Island comes alive for a three-day celebration of horseracing, food, wine and entertainment. The carnival features two race days, with a casual day on Thursday before the main Coopers Kangaroo Island Cup Day on Saturday. On Friday, racegoers are able to enjoy some of the island’s best food and wine, through the ‘Punters Intermission’ at Dudley Wines Cellar Door or the Calcutta Evening at Aurora Ozone Hotel.

When: 18 to 20 February 2016
Where: Kangaroo Island Racecourse

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