Photography obsessed writer and urban explorer. Lover of nature, art and long weekends. Adelaide, South Australia.
Published November 2nd 2013
Visit the Dead Centre of Town
I have never been on a ghost tour before and thought that a night-time guided tour of Port Adelaide's most haunted sites and it's most terrible crimes on Halloween would be a great way to start. It was and I had a brilliant night out.
Port Adelaide has a historic and gloriously sinful past. From behind it's (nearly) 180 year old doors and windows, the dark past of the Port is brought to life again on this tour with great storytelling from within the corridors, cellars, streets and laneways.
Rebecca was our tour guide for the night; she was entertaining, knowledgeable and heaps of fun for the entire night. From our starting point, we headed to the dockside and meandered around the Port, visiting more than 20 separate locations, each with their own spooky or criminal story. There were about 17 people in our group, some dressed up for the occasion and the winners won a terrific prize from the walk hosts.
We walked, we talked, we took photos and suddenly the tour was over - our 2 1/2 hours just flew by. We covered quite a distance but it felt like nothing at all. The information was constant, the stories and tales of the terrible were simply gob-smacking. As they say in the classics: truth is stranger than fiction. I loved every minute.
If you're into ghosts and paranormal activity, then I'd highly recommend that you book into this tour. If you love history, especially the wicked criminal history of Port Adelaide, then you really must book onto this tour.
There was so much that I learnt, so much that I had never heard of before - it was absolutely fascinating. We heard about Jasper, the Black Panther, smugglers tunnels, Roy Orbison, the Bermuda Triangle of the Port and so much more. So much more, but I'm not going to give any details away. You'll have to book into a tour and experience all of this for yourself.
The Adelaide Ghost-Crime-Tours have been running for almost 2 years. They welcome anyone from 13 and up (with adult supervision) and tours run most weekends. Ghost Hunters International recently joined one of their tours and they had astonishing results from the Port sites.
What to bring:
It's an outdoor walking tour, so be prepared for varying weather conditions Comfortable walking shoes Your camera – you just never know!
Port Adelaide was officially founded on the 6th of January 1837. On this day the first Harbourmaster, Captain Thomas Lipson took up residence with his family on the edge of Port Creek. Ships began arriving later that month and passengers the month after.
The area was first known as The Port Creek Settlement, and by 1840 is was commonly referred to as "Port Misery". One author, in a book about the new settlement, wrote "This is Port Adelaide! Port Misery would be a better name; for nothing in any other part of the world can surpass it in every thing that is wretched and inconvenient"
Port Adelaide's location was only meant to be temporary, but due to the costs involved with moving it, the government of the time decided to leave it where it was. And so the Port's history began.
I can vouch for the relevance of ghost tours at Port Adelaide. In my younger days I've had what seemed like near death experiences in several Port pubs.
Somehow I always climbed back from the brink. Hair of the dog seemed like effective first aid.