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18 school holiday activities in Adelaide

Ink a full schedule of fun in to the calendar during the school holidays with these discounted family activities and things to do for free.

Adelaide is inundated with family-friendly activities. Animal encounters, adrenaline rushes, quirky dining experiences and adventures into the wild are all options for broods in the South Australian capital.

Family time doesn’t have to cost the kids their inheritance, either. There are plenty of discounts on activities, and a handful of experiences that are completely free to begin with.

Here are a few of the best options for the next break.


Monarto Open Range Zoo Admission

Monarto Open Range Zoo Admission from RedBalloon

See an arc’s worth of animals close up at Monarto Open Range Zoo. It’s one of the largest open-range zoos in Australia and home to rhinos, lions, cheetah, chimps and more.

  • Duration: All day 9.30 to 17.30.
  • Location: Monarto, South Australia
  • Price is for general entry to the zoo.

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Adelaide Gaol Ghost Tour and Investigation – Adult

Adelaide Gaol Ghost Tour and Investigation – Adult from RedBalloon

Test your mettle at the 147-year-old Adelaide Gaol. Take a tour of the building with its creaky doors and shadowy cells and learn stories of the ghosts who are said to haunt there.

  • Duration: Two hours
  • Location: Adelaide Gaol
  • Price is for a guided walking tour and entry to the gaol.

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Mega Adventure Obstacle Park Admission

Mega Adventure Obstacle Park Admission from RedBalloon

Tackle 65 aerial challenges at Mega Adventure Obstacle Park. Scramble up cargo nets, wobble your way across rope bridges and even try a BMX ride 26 metres in the sky.

  • Duration: Two hours
  • Location: West Beach, Adelaide
  • Price is for access pass, safety gear and briefing.

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Southern Ocean Adventure from Victor Harbor – Adelaide

Southern Ocean Adventure from Victor Harbor – Adelaide from Adrenaline

Leave a trail of white water behind you as you explore the waters off Adelaide’s coast by speedboat. Spot sea lions, seals and dolphins as you explore.

  • Duration: 90-minute cruise
  • Location: Adelaide then Victor Harbour
  • Price is for cruise, commentary and safety equipment.

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Dolphin Sanctuary & Shipwreck Kayak – Adelaide

Dolphin Sanctuary & Shipwreck Kayak – Adelaide from Adrenaline

Kayak around the boat graveyard that is Adelaide’s shipwreck heritage trail. Keep an eye out for dolphins as you glide through the water.

  • Duration: Half day
  • Location: Garden Island, Adelaide
  • Price is for guided kayak tour.

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Cleland Wildlife Park Experience

Cleland Wildlife Park Experience from finder.com.au

Get close to 130 species of Australia’s native wildlife at Cleland Wildlife Park. Handfeed kangaroos and shake paws with a koala.

  • Duration: Five hours (approx.)
  • Location: Adelaide, South Australia
  • Price is for park entry, bag of food, park orientation, transfers and koala close-up experience.

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Riverland Adventure Tour – Murray River

Riverland Adventure Tour – Murray River from finder.com

Bob along the Murray River, taking in Mt Lofty, popping in at Bleasdale Winery, exploring Wellington and nibbling plump olives at Tailem between stints on the water.

  • Duration: Nine hours
  • Location: Adelaide, South Australia
  • Price is for the cruise with seven stops along the way.

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Torrens River BBQ Buoy

Torrens River BBQ Buoy from finder.com

BBQ as you bob along the River Torrens. These buoy-style boats are donut-shaped with a circular table and BBQ grill in-built.

  • Duration: Two hours
  • Location: Adelaide, South Australia
  • Price is for two hours’ use of the BBQ buoy with esky, ice, bluetooth speakers and cutlery.

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Paddle Boat on the Torrens

Paddle Boat on the Torrens from finder.com

Float along the Torrens River on a Crayola-coloured pedal-powered paddle boat. Take in sights like the Adelaide Oval as you bob along.

  • Duration: 20 minutes
  • Location: Adelaide, South Australia
  • Price is for the 20-minute use of a paddle boat.

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All-Day Entry Pass to Urimbirra Wildlife Park

All-Day Entry Pass to Urimbirra Wildlife Park from Scoopon

Get hands-on with Australia’s native wildlife at Urimbirra Wildlife Park. You can handfeed kangaroos, feel the softness of a koala’s coat and get close to emus.

  • Duration: Full day
  • Location: Hindmarsh Valley, Adelaide
  • Price is for entry to the park.

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Kangaroo Island Full-Day Experience from Adelaide by Ferry

Kangaroo Island Full-Day Experience from Adelaide by Ferry from Get Your Guide

Experience Kangaroo Island with its 509 kilometres of coastline and population of sea lions, pelicans and koala bears.

  • Duration: 16 hours
  • Location: Kangaroo Island from Adelaide
  • Price is for return ferry, guided walk at Seal Bay Conservation Park, two-course lunch, koala viewing at Hanson Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, national park entry fees.

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Adelaide Zoo General Admission with Giraffe Feeding Experience

Adelaide Zoo General Admission with Giraffe Feeding Experience from Viator

Have a “pandas and tigers and koala bears, oh my!” moment at Adelaide Zoo, where you can also spend a short time feeding giraffes carrots and celery, too.

  • Duration: Full day
  • Location: Adelaide Zoo
  • Price is for zoo admission and feeding experience.

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Half-Day Kayaking Tour in Coorong National Park

Half-Day Kayaking Tour in Coorong National Park from Viator

Explore the lagoons and dunes that make up Coorong National Park by kayak. Get that off-the-grid feeling as you paddle through the wetlands.

  • Duration: Six hours
  • Location: Coorong National Park, Adelaide
  • Price is for kayaking tour, morning tea and lunch.

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Five free things to do in Adelaide over the school holidays

  • South Australian Museum: Join the Art + Science school holiday program, held during the July school holidays. Dates TBC. Read more.
  • Adelaide Botanical Gardens: Free guided tours take place at Adelaide's three botanical gardens throughout the break, which are good options for older children and wannabe explorers. Read more.
  • The Jam Factory: Take the kids to see the artists at The Jam Factory and catch one of the glass-blowing artists in action. Read more.
  • Glenelg Beach: So it’s not sunbathing weather, but you can still go on a shell safari and build sandcastles at Glenelg.
  • Morialta Conservation Park: Visit the waterfall which will be at its thunderous best in winter.

Alex Keshen

Alex takes care of the travel section here at finder.com.au. If there's a new sale on tours or cruises, discounted flights or hotels, or anything else that can be on offer, she'll fill you in.

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