Finding fun things to do in Adelaide during the school holidays can be a challenge in winter. We're increasingly being encouraged to get kids outdoors and engaged in nature play, but wet weather can quickly put an end to that.
South Australian Museum It's NAIDOC week from July 5-12, celebrating the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The SA Museum is joining in the celebrations with free things to do for kids aged from 5-12 years old during the school holidays.
Learn Ngarrindjeri weaving and make your own creation (July 6-10)
Listen to magical Tales from Torres Strait with performer Eddie Peters and hear about the creation of the islands (July 7,9)
Learn traditional Torres Strait songs and dance from Eddie Peters (July 7,9)
National Railway Museum Come to the Family Fun Fair which runs from Thursday July 16 to Sunday July 19. There will be free children's entertainment, performers doing street theatre, an Aussie wildlife tent, music, singing and dancing. Of course there will also be food vans and a BBQ to fill hungry tummies after all the activities for kids. Take free steam train rides on Peronne, Bill and Bub or board the Red Hen diesel railcars for a nostalgia trip. Normal admission charges apply.
SA Maritime Museum Monsters and Mermaids is the name of the Maritime Museum's special new holiday show from the creators of the popular Gory Stories. It's an adventure on the high seas, sailing haunted ships into strange seas. Listen for mermaids singing but beware of monsters rising from the deep. Can you help the crew navigate their way through salty superstitions? Fun for kids of all ages, dressing up encouraged. Performances are at 11am and 1pm Mondays to Fridays during the July school holidays. No bookings required. Free with normal museum entry.
National Motor Museum Come and design your own time travel machine at the National Motor Museum during the school holidays. A DeLorean car like the one in Back to the Future will be on display to inspire you, and the finished creations will be put on display for other visitors to see. Free event activity, but normal admission charges apply.
Migration Museum At the Migration Museum get inventive with wool in the school holidays - make and decorate your very own Tomboy knitter using yarn supplied by the museum. You can take your creation home, or leave it as a colourful decoration. Now that's practical winter fun for kids! Free event, no admission charge, suitable for kids 4 years and older, groups should book in advance.
SA Aviation Museum There are no new activities for kids at the SA Aviation Museum, but every school holidays children are encouraged to colour in pictures of the planes, with the best entry winning a $25 Target voucher.
National Military Vehicles Museum
Visiting the National Military Vehicles Museum is always great value (especially in the school holidays) because up to 3 children are admitted free with a paying adult. This volunteer run museum is one of my favourites and you can often spot one of their armoured cars or other vehicles at charity functions. If you haven't been for a while, why not pop in and see what new vehicles are on display?
An Awesome Tank at the National Military Vehicles Museum
Free Museums in Adelaide
There are many community museums in Adelaide and the suburbs that are either free or cost only a gold coin donation. The Sir Thomas Playford ETSA Museum is quite a mouthful to say, but its collection will leave you gobsmacked with amazement.
The Army Museum of South Australia has a Gallipoli exhibition on at the moment, and enough tanks and guns to make the Military Vehicles Museum jealous. Also with a wartime theme is the Repat Museum, highlighting the wonderful medical support for veterans.
The Hindmarsh Museum is only a short tram trip from the city and has an awesome collection of old photos and local history. The City of Unley gives you a choice of two museums with free things to do: the Unley Museum is currently showing the At Home, In War exhibition, while a few steps away is the free St Johns Ambulance Museum.
In the Botanic Gardens the Museum of Economic Botany collection of papier-mâché fruit might inspire your kids to be creative and make something similar on a rainy day at home.
Demolition of Osborne Power Station - at ETSA Museum
Museums in the Country
There are many museums in country towns operated by the National Trust SA and other community groups. If you're holidaying in the country try the Beachport Museum or the Tailem Bend railway museum.