Heritage, art and Culture
Heritage Sites


Adelaide Gaol

Visit the Adelaide Gaol for a guided tour. The Gaol is a major part of Adelaide’s heritage and its history extends from the time of the early settlers. As one of the two oldest public buildings in Adelaide, the Gaol has much to offer every visitor.

The Adelaide Gaol is said to be the most haunted site in South Australia. Book into chilling night visit to the Gaol on one of our regular Ghost Tours where you will hear about many of the Gaol’s ghostly activities.


Tjilbruke Spring

The Tjilbruke Spring site located along the Kingston Park Coastal Reserve is of great cultural importance and spiritual significance to the Kaurna people and to the wider Aboriginal population.  For thousands of years the permanent freshwater spring has been bubbling away in the sand and once formed a freshwater coastal lagoon.

The sacred spring site is part of the extensive Tjilbruke Dreaming Story. Tjilbruke is an important Dreaming ancestor to Kaurna people and the Tjilbruke spring site along with the Dreaming Story remains sacred to the Kaurna people today.

Read more about Tjilbruke Springs

Smith Brothers Walking Trail

If you're a history buff, take the Smith Brothers Walking Trail (400m) at Adelaide Airport and learn about the first flight from England to Australia in 1919 - an epic 20,000km journey!

Cummins House

History buffs can visit Cummins House, Sheoak Road, Novar Gardens. Cummins house is a grand old mansion built in 1842.

The house and grounds are lovingly preserved to give visitors a strong sense of the history and lives of one of Adelaide’s founding families. The grounds of Cummins House are established as one of Adelaide’s premier locations for garden wedding ceremonies and receptions, high teas, family functions, corporate seminars and cocktail parties. The house is heritage listed and under the guardianship of the City of West Torrens.

Tours are held every first and third Sunday of the month, from 2pm - 4pm, with the exception of December and January and Easter Sunday. 

Read more about Cummins House

Glenelg Air-Raid Shelter

The Glenelg Air-Raid Shelter was built in 1942 as part of a WWII communications network. It now houses exhibitions and memorabilia. These tell the stories of Holdfast Bay and its residents during the various wars including WWII.

Location: Rugless Terrace, Glenelg (next to the Glenelg Football Oval)

Phone: (08) 82299916

Opening Times: Every third Sunday of the month 1-4pm. 25 April, ANZAC Day 1-4pm. 11 November, Remembrance Day 1-4pm.

Cost: Gold coin donation

Read more about Glenelg Air-Raid Shelter

Aboriginal Culture and History

Holdfast Bay acknowledges Kaurna people as the traditional owners and custodians of this land. We respect their spiritual relationship with country that has developed over thousands of years, and the cultural heritage and beliefs that remain important to Kaurna People today.

The Kaurna People are the original people of Adelaide and the Adelaide Plains, whose country stretches from Crystal Brook in the north to Cape Jervis in the south. The coastal plains between Glenelg and Kingston Park provided a hospitable summer camp environment with rolling sand dunes, freshwater lagoons and natural springs for the Kaurna people, where food and water was plentiful.

Read more about Holdfast Bay's Aboriginal History

Old Gum Tree

Glenelg is recognised as the oldest European settlement on mainland South Australia. Each year on 28 December, the Proclamation document is read at the site of the Old Gum Tree.

It all began on 28 December 1836 when a flotilla of ships had already landed along with the Colonial Secretary Robert Gouger.

A makeshift camp of tents and transportable huts had been established just beyond the sand dunes, near a freshwater creek now known as the Patawalonga. At 2pm and with the temperature hovering around 40°c, the Cygnet and Buffalo vessels sailed into Holdfast Bay against a backdrop of fires in the Mount Lofty Ranges. In the first boat sat Governor Hindmarsh, his Secretary George Stevenson, the Resident Commissioner Hurtle Fisher and their families.

The official Vice Regal Party entered Gouger's tent where the commission was read and the oaths administered to the Governor and his Council. They then emerged, and in open woodland beneath a distinctively arched old gum tree, Stevenson read the document known as the ‘Proclamation of South Australia’. 

In 1857, just after Glenelg had become a municipality, John Hector, owner of the land on which the gum tree stands gifted the land to the Glenelg community.

Port Adelaide State Heritage Area

Port Adelaide is South Australia's first state heritage area and contains South Australia's most substantial and continuous group of colonial buildings.

Many of these buildings were directly associated with Port Adelaide's function as the state's major port.

Port Adelaide is a working seaport 14km north west of Adelaide. The actual City of Port Adelaide is located on the port's inner harbour. The city centre is surrounded by Adelaide's western suburbs.

The Port Adelaide state heritage area includes the commercial and administrative core of early Port Adelaide. It is situated between St Vincent Street and the waterfront (North Parade), and extends from Nelson Street on the west to Jubilee Street on the east.

The Port was the principal gateway to the colony for immigrants and supplies, developing rapidly as a shipping, transport and industrial hub. The historic government and commercial buildings are evidence of the Port's prosperity and importance during the mid and late 1800s.

The heritage precinct contains more buildings of continuous historic character than anywhere else in South Australia. This group is an excellent example of a 19th century commercial area, displaying colonial architecture that is rare in South Australia.



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