Adelaide is known as the Festival City for good reason! There are enough events and festivals in Adelaide to keep you busy the whole year round.
Whether your passion is for arts, culture, music, cabaret, sports or things a little on the weird side, South Australia’s capital has got you covered. And when it comes to festivals in Adelaide, you’ll notice it’s go big or go home – with some of the largest festivals of their kind in the Southern Hemisphere!
Santos Tour Down Under
The Santos Tour Down Under is the biggest cycling race and the largest Festival of Cycling in the southern hemisphere. A range of events take place across South Australia during the tour, including mass-participation rides for kids and adults, street parties, formal dinners and the City of Adelaide Tour Village in Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga.
Adelaide Fringe Festival
The Adelaide Fringe is the largest arts festival in the southern hemisphere, attracting millions of visitors to the city for performances of cabaret, theatre, circus, comedy, music, art – and everything in between. This weird, wonderful festival pushes the boundaries ,and celebrates diversity, access and inclusion. With over 60 years of history, the festival has grown to more than 1,200 events, with something for everyone.
Adelaide Festival and Adelaide Writers Week
The Adelaide Festival brings globally acclaimed theatre, music, dance, visual art and writers to Adelaide for 17 culture-filled days. This is a festival designed to both nourish the mind and leave you with an sense of community. Writers Week is a longstanding part of the Adelaide Festival Program, and as Australia’s largest free literary festival it is considered one of the world’s leading literary events showcasing both emerging and established authors.
Another big one, WOMADelaide is one of the largest cultural festivals celebrating music, arts and dance. Every year, around 500 artists from over 30 countries perform in Adelaide’s magnificent Botanic Park. It’s not all about music though: the festival also programs large-scale installation works, lively discussion panels, workshops and much more, offering a veritable kaleidoscope of experiences and cultural discovery.
Tasting Australia is the country’s longest running foodie festival celebrating people, produce and place. Local legends are joined by top chefs from around the world at The Town Square in Victoria Square / Tarntanyangga, which becomes the city’s to-go to gourmet food hall. Sip your way through a wine, beer or spirit masterclass, sampling South Australian gems alongside those from further afield.
Adelaide Cabaret Festival
Every June, the Adelaide Cabaret Festival sweeps through the city to present an eclectic program of classic and contemporary cabaret performances. There’s glitz, glamour, singing and dancing – mixed with a generous dash of satire. As one of the world’s most comprehensive cabaret festivals, it has amassed a loyal following of musical theatre buffs coming to appreciate the best of emerging and established artists from across the globe.
Adelaide Guitar Festival
The Adelaide Guitar Festival celebrates the world’s most popular instrument in style. This biennial event is led by Artistic Director Slava Grigoryan, and is the most significant festival of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. Covering all genres of music – from rock to jazz, as well as folk, classical, experimental, and blues and roots – this festival has quality of performances on offer. As well as concerts and gigs, there are also free and low-cost workshops, master classes, artist’s talks, panel discussions and programs for emerging musicians.
Adelaide Film Festival
This one’s for the film buffs. Established in 2003, Adelaide Film Festival is a biennial, eleven-day celebration and exploration of Australian and international screen culture. Catch an Australian or world premiere screening, get involved in a forum or check out the special events where new talent is introduced to the Australian industry.
Enjoyed reading about the best festivals in Adelaide? For more to explore in SA’s capital, click here for our top recommendations!
Travel to Adelaide
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