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The City of Adelaide's Historic Return

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by Paula McManus (subscribe)
Photography obsessed writer and urban explorer. Lover of nature, art and long weekends. Adelaide, South Australia. https://www.facebook.com/paula.mcmanus1
Event: -
World's Oldest Clipper Ship Comes Home
She's on her way back!


Please note a change in the expected arrival date - now Monday 3rd February

clipper ship city of adelaide
Painting by Ed Walker of CITY OF ADELAIDE, courtesy Clipper Ship City of Adelaide Limited


The City of Adelaide is the world's oldest clipper ship and one of only two that survive.

She's such an important part of our history in South Australia.

Built in 1864, she made 23 voyages between England and Adelaide. It's estimated that 250,000 South Australians have direct descendants from the migrants who came to Adelaide on the City of Adelaide.

In 1992 she was given Heritage listing, but after a museum in Scotland ran out of money to restore her, the heritage listing was removed to enable the ship to be demolished.

She was so close to being torn apart and all South Australians should be very thankful to everyone on the 'Clipper Ship City of Adelaide Limited" team who have spent the past 14 years to get her saved and returned to us.

The team are all volunteers and they've done an amazing job to fundraise the money that was needed to get the ship home to us. It's not too late to donate, there are some fun donation options. I bought some (virtual) 1865 Rum. You can donate as little as $5 or as much as you want.

clipper ship city of adelaide
CITY OF ADELAIDE on her slip at Irvine, Scotland, courtesy Clipper Ship City of Adelaide Limited


The historic Clipper ship is expected to arrive back into our city on Monday 3rd February. This is a few days later than first announced.


The ship is expected at Outer Harbor on Monday 3rd February and will then be floated down the Port River to the docks on Tuesday 4th or Wednesday 5th February.

Once in the Port proper, she will be "parked" temporarily at Dock One, until a new and more permanent home is finalised.

What a day of celebration it will be in Adelaide!

The Dolphin Explorer cruise ship has been chartered for the very special event and you can buy a ticket to be on board to welcome the City of Adelaide back.

Port River Dolphin Cruises
Dolphin Explorer (©paula mcmanus)


The 4 hour cruise will meet the ship at Outer Harbor. You'll see her come in on either the lifter ship Palanpur or by barge. Either way, this will be a historical event and something that you'll not want to miss.

Tickets are only $35 each with lunch and refreshments included. Numbers are strictly limited.

The date of 3rd February is an estimate. It's possible that there'll be delays so keep an eye on the net for her progress.

You can track her voyage with this nifty Final Voyage GPS tracker.

Not keen on the cruise? Then park yourself at any of the great viewing spots along the Port River. There are lots of places to get a view of the City Of Adelaide as she comes home.

under the Tom 'Diver' Derrick Bridge
Welcome Home! The view to Port Adelaide from Tom 'Diver' Derrick Bridge (©paula mcmanus)


This will be an exciting day for all South Australians. Our City of Adelaide will be home, she's part of our history, she belongs here where we can see her, enjoy her and protect her.

She'll be a rock star at the Port!
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Why? Give the old girl a warm homecoming
When: Approximately 3rd February 2014
Where: Port Adelaide
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