Top Things to do in South Australia for Families

Top Things to do in South Australia for Families

If you’re visiting Adelaide and are keen to explore the city but also venture a little further out, you will find fabulous cafes, great coffee, lovely parks and gardens and much, much more.

From the scenic hills down to the beaches below, South Australia offers an endless supply of things to do each and every day of the year.  There are countless family friendly bushwalks, paths and tracks for bike riding, fantastic playgrounds and nature play spaces, aerial parks, water parks, play cafes, swimming pools and beautiful beaches.

We love Adelaide as it is so easy to get around. You can be in the Adelaide Hills one minute then 40 minutes later, arrive at the beach. It’s incredibly easy to walk around the city square and there are lots of interesting places to visit in the heart of the CBD including the Adelaide Zoo, Art Gallery, Botanic Garden and Museums.

This list is always evolving, but there are firm favourites that keep both locals and visitors returning for more.

So, make like a tourist in your home town and explore!

We’ve put together a list of all the best places to visit in South Australia below:

Top Tourist Attractions

Adelaide Oval | Citywebsite | RoofClimb Review

Art Gallery of South Australia | Citywebsite

Adelaide Central Market | Citywebsite 

City to Glenelg Tram | website |  Play & Go Review

Morialta Nature Playground | website | Play & Go Review

Morialta playground eagles nest

Mt Lofty Summit | Cleland | website | Play & Go Review

Popeye River Cruise | Elder Park, Adelaidewebsite | Play & Go Review

Semaphore to Fort Glanville Tourist Railway |  Play & Go Review

SteamRanger Heritage Tourist Railway | website | Play & Go Review

Top Family Fun Activities

AFL Max | Adelaide Airport | Play & Go review

Beachhouse | Glenelg | Play & Go review of Glenelg including the Beachhouse

Bounce | Marleston | Play & Go review

Funtopia Indoor | Sefton PlazaPlay & Go review


Latitude | Greenacres | Play & Go review

Mega Fast Karts Richmond | Richmond | Play & Go review here

TreeClimb Adelaide | Adelaide | Play & Go review

West Beach Adventure (formerly Mega Adventure) | West Beach | website | Play & Go review

Woodhouse Activity Centre | Play & Go review of Tube Slides

tube slides adelaide

Top Swimming Centres with Water Slides

Adelaide Aquatic Centre | North Adelaide | Play & Go review

Marion Outdoor Pool | Parkholme | Play & Go review

Waterworld Aquatic Centre | Ridgehavenwebsite

Find out more about Adelaide’s Outdoor Swimming Pools

Top Parks & Gardens to Explore

Adelaide Botanic Garden | Adelaide | Acres of sprawling garden rooms in the heart of the city | Play & Go review

Adelaide Himeji Garden | Adelaide | A tranquil oasis in the city parklands | Play & Go review

Botanic Park | Adelaide | The perfect spot to stop for a picnic with friends while the kids climb the roots of the giant Moreton Bay Fig Trees | Play & Go review

Carrick Hill | Mitcham | Beautiful house to visit and an amazing garden with a children’s storybook trail to explore | Play & Go review

Mt Lofty Botanic Garden | Crafers | website | Play & Go review

Top Playgrounds

Read our list of favourite playgrounds

Morialta playground eagles nest

See the Best Regional Playgrounds in South Australia

Loxton Playground

See the list of new playgrounds in 2021

Glenside Park

Museums & Historical Attractions

Adelaide Gaol  | Adelaide | Prepare to step back in time at this former prison | Read our review here

Migration Museum  | Adelaide |  website  |  Play & Go Review

MOD Museum | The exhibition themes change throughout the year and explore the future through a mix of science, art and innovation | Adelaide | Current Exhibition

National Motor Museum  | Birdwood  |  website

National Railway Museum  | Port Adelaide  |  website


South Australian Aviation Museum  | Port Adelaide  |  website

South Australian Maritime Museum  |  Port Adelaide website

South Australian Museum  |  Adelaide website

South Australian Whale Centre  |  Victor Harbor website

Easy Walks, Bushwalks & Hikes  

Adelaide has plenty of bushwalks suitable for kids, not far from the city.

Read about our favourite walks, bushwalks and hikes

lobethal bushland walk

Top Train Journeys

Pichi Richi Railway | Play & Go Review

Semaphore to Fort Glanville Tourist Railway |  Play & Go Review

SteamRanger Heritage Tourist Railwaywebsite | Play & Go Review

Miniature Trains, Train Rides & Parks

Find a list of places to visit to see and ride on miniature trains. There are also a few playgrounds to view trains as they pass. Little train lovers will be overjoyed by their proximity to railway tracks. Read more here

Wildlife Parks & Zoos

Adelaide has some fantastic zoos and wildlife parks, all within an easy drive of the city.

Adelaide Zoo | Play & Go review

Cleland Wildlife Park | Play & Go review

Gorge Wildlife Park | Play & Go review

Monarto Zoo | Play & Go review

Urrumbirra Wildlife Park | website

Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary | website

Top Shopping Precincts

Burnside Village | Glenside | 8-minute drive South-East of the city with boutique shopping shops

Harbourtown Outlet Shopping | Adelaide Airport | 13 mins drive West of Adelaide city. Outlet stores, eateries and playground.

Norwood Parade | Norwood | 5 mins East of Adelaide city, this shopping strip has clothing stores, books, homewares, shoes and eateries.

Hahndorf in the Adelaide Hills | Hahndorf |  A collection of craft and boutique stores in the main street of historic Hahndorf.  website | Play & Go Stories

King William Rd | Hyde Park |  Boutique shopping, clothes and shoes plus eateries

Day Trips from the City

Adelaide Hills

A 20-minute drive from the City of Adelaide up the South Eastern Freeway. Take the exit at Stirling and enjoy wineries, fantastic eateries, fruit picking, Mount Lofty Botanic Gardens, Cleland Wildlife Park, gourmet chocolates, picturesque scenery.

Read about the top things to do in the Adelaide Hills

McLaren Vale

A 40-minute drive from the City of Adelaide. Explore wineries galore, beautiful sandy beaches, and some great places to eat plus a great unique playground and the famous d’Arenberg Cube.

Find more places to visit in McLaren Vale

Barossa Valley 

A one hour to the Barossa Valley which is known for its amazing wineries, restaurants and great places to explore.

Read about fun things to see and do in the Barossa Valley

Holiday Getaway Destinations in SA

Kangaroo Island

A haven for nature with sensational coastal views, beautiful beaches, adventure activities, amazing places to eat and plenty of tranquillity.

Find out more about places to visit on Kangaroo Island here

Kangaroo Island Western River Cove

Yorke Peninsula

An amazing place for a quiet, relaxing getaway with stunning beaches, views and walks.

Find out more about places to visit on the Yorke Peninsula

Flaherty Beach Yorke Peninsula

Best Beaches around Adelaide

Beach lovers will adore our beaches which are rarely crowded, have soft, white sand and generally pretty safe waters to swim in. We recommend Brighton Beach as Surf Lifesaving are present at certain times of the year and the surf is gentle and great for smaller kids with lovely sandbars to walk out to. Parking is available on the esplanade and there are plenty of cafes and restaurants nearby plus fish and chips.

  • Aldinga Beach – 44 minute drive South of the City of Adelaide. A great if you want to drive along the sand and set up next to your vehicle.
  • Brighton Beach – 23 minutes Southwest of Adelaide. A great spot with small children, the water is calm and shallow. A range of cafes, takeaway and a pub along Jetty Rd. 
  • Henley Beach – 17 West of the City of Adelaide. Trendy eateries serving great foo set around a bustling square.
  • Port Willunga – 43 minute drive South of the City of Adelaide. Set in a cove, the beach is quiet and lovely with rockpools in places. Takeaway or sit down fish and chips from the Star of Greece is highly recommended.
  • Semaphore Beach – 25 mins drive northwest of the City of Adelaide. Carnival area and small train during the warmer months.
  • West Beach – a 16 minute drive West of the City of Adelaide. This is a lovely quiet beach with a grassy area and playground. Grab fish and chips from down the road and enjoy.

Learn more about the safety of each beach

Read more about Adelaide’s Best Beaches

Eating Out in Adelaide

South Australia has some amazing restaurants and cafes which are very family friendly and offer great value for money as well as fantastic food. 

Find great family friendly places to eat around South Australia

Best Ice Cream

Here at Play & Go we love our ice-cream – especially in the warmer months, but a bit of cold weather doesn’t stop us from eating it during Winter too.  We love it so much we thought we’d make a list.

Find the best ice cream places around Adelaide

Best Hot Chocolates 

There’s nothing like a rich, smooth, chocolatey hot chocolate, particularly in the middle of Winter. We’ve put together a list of some of our favourite places where you can go and enjoy a nice hot chocolate and maybe indulge in a little treat on the side.

Find the best hot chocolates around Adelaide

things to do in Adelaide for families

At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.

Image Source: photos by Play & Go


Want to get all the latest events and activities straight to your inbox?

Subscribe to our weekly email newsletter below to keep up to date with our latest posts and find out all the best events & activities for Adelaide families. Newsletters are only sent once a week, and you may sometimes get a special offer exclusively for our subscribers only!


You May Also Like:

get stoked


No comments yet.

Feel free to leave us a comment

Back to Top