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South Australia's History Festival 2017

Home > Adelaide > Exhibitions | Family | Free | Fun for Children | Fun Things To Do
by Dave Walsh (subscribe)
I enjoy writing about Adelaide and its many attractions. If you think Adelaide is boring, the problem is not with Adelaide. adelaideunearthed.blogspot.com.au/
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With 600 events, there's sure to be something for you
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Doing Time at Old Adelaide Gaol History Day


May is a month to look forward to, when it's time for South Australia's History Festival again. In South Australia we're especially lucky, because the history festival also overlaps with the National Trust's Australian Heritage Festival. This gives a staggering choice of more than 600 events around the state to help celebrate South Australia's history.

With so many fun things to do for the history festival, it can be a challenge narrowing down to the things that will suit you. The history festival program guide in The Advertiser takes some time to pore through, but luckily there are short cuts when you search the website online. In this article I'll give you a few tips, and suggest some highlights.

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Learn Light Painting or Visit the Open Day at Freemasons Grand Lodge


Many history festival events can be simply categorised - open days, guided tours, and exhibitions are all popular. There are handy buttons to click on South Australia's History Festival website to limit your search to just one of these. You can also select events by region, or search for a keyword, such as "free" or "kids".

I've scanned through and picked some of the fun things to do in Adelaide for the history festival. Just remember - bookings are essential for many events. If you don't book early you will probably miss out, as many events are extremely popular.

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Take Your Pick of Cemetery Tours for the History Festival


Guided Tours and Walks in Adelaide
There are a huge range of Adelaide Heritage Walks on offer from the National Trust, with themes ranging from music to markets and murder mystery. Tours of the Glenside Hospital historical precinct will be your last chance ever to see inside The Elms.

West Terrace Cemetery is the spooky location for several tours and a talk - including a night tour, while over at the Army Museum you can take the Heritage Walk of Keswick Barracks every Sunday in May.

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Take the Keswick Barracks Heritage Walk at Army Museum SA


Take the Kaurna Reconciliation Walk to reflect on our shared histories, learn about Engineering a City on a CBD walking tour, or choose your tour to see the Museum of Economic Botany in the Adelaide Botanic Gardens.

Among the many free things to do in Adelaide is a guided bus tour of 20th Century Architecture: The Latest in Heritage from the Adelaide City Council.

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See the Latest Heritage Architecture in Adelaide


Fun for Kids and Family Activities
The Old Adelaide Gaol holds a history day every year with discounted $5 admission. It's great fun for kids, but you will need to be early to beat the crowds.

Our new Centre of Democracy opens in Adelaide during May, and you can take a special children's tour with hands-on activities for kids. It's free and no bookings are needed.

More hands-on free fun for kids in the city is at Touchstones on North Terrace. Over at the SA Museum be quick to catch the children's event Young Explorers: Earth, Water and Fire

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Free Activities for Kids at the South Australian Museum During the History Festival


Find free craft activities for kids in the history festival at Tea Tree Gully: Land of the Space Echidnas. Just down the road Chocolate Coated History will tempt all the family to appreciate the taste of heritage.

I particularly like the free Children's Adventure Story Workshop: William Light's Voyage to School, teaching Colonel Light's story in a fun way.

At Urrbrae House and gardens join in the free fun with a Photo Scavenger Hunt for all the family. Perhaps take a walk in the Waite Arboretum afterwards.

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Find Magic in Thebarton Air Raid Shelter


Open Days
With the loss of Open House Adelaide there are now more open days in South Australia's History Festival. Glenelg air raid shelter has an open day and self guided tours, while over at Thebarton air raid shelter you get a magic performance too. That should be enough, even for fans of underground bunkers and tunnels in Adelaide.

See historic Fort Glanville looking magical - by lamplight, visit Cummins House to see part of our history on the open days, and check out South Australia's oldest mine.

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Field Artillery at Glenthorne Farm O'Halloran Hill (SLSA B-10167)


An open day at Glenthorne Farm is a rare treat. See where South Australia's first Police Commissioner, Major Thomas Shuldham O'Halloran lived. Later the Army trained thousands of horses for war, and conducted artillery practice here.

There's more family fun at the SA Police Museum open day at Thebarton Barracks, or get hands on learning about electricity at the Sir Thomas Playford ETSA Museum.

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Fun for Kids on a Steam Engine: Kapunda Heritage Attractions


South Australia's History Festival in the Country
Country South Australia is where you will find some of the best of South Australia's History Festival. Kapunda in the Barossa Valley even has their own program of events. At Cobdogla Steam Museum kids of all ages will thrill to the train rides through the vineyards.

The Port Milang Historic Railway Museum is one of the town's many attractions - head down to catch a bus tour of Trains and Boats and ... a Horse. Be sure to visit the South Australian Light Railway Centre while you're there.

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Milang Railway Museum: One of Many Milang Attractions


With the weather mild in May, a visit to Yorke Peninsula is a treat during South Australia's History Festival, with many fun things to do in Moonta, Wallaroo and nearby towns. Don't miss the highlight, the Kernewek Lowender Copper Coast Cornish Festival.
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Why? Celebrate our history with free things to do
Where: Adelaide, SA
Cost: Varies, with many free events
Your Comment
I've seen so much about this festival, it looks very interesting. I'm most interested in chocolate coated history at Tea Tree Gully, for obvious reasons :')
by Hayley Sayers (score: 1|87) 180 days ago
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