The Best Time to Visit Adelaide 2023: The Ultimate Guide
Are you planning a trip down-under? There are plenty of reasons to venture this way, from sightseeing to incredible experiences. Why not consider it?
In Adelaide, South Australia, you will enjoy a Mediterranean-like climate with dry and hot summers and mild winters. The seasons in the southern hemisphere are opposite of the seasons in the northern hemisphere, so you have to pay attention to the weather when you plan to visit South Australia.
Adelaide's average high temperature reaches 84.2°F (29 °C) in summer, and 46. 5 °F (8 °C) - 60.8°F (16°C) in winter. Average annual precipitation is very low-around 21.5 inches (545 mm), the wettest month being June with 3.1 inches (79mm) of precipitation.
Australia is a large continent and the climates are different. Get ready for beautiful South Australia weather as it is the driest of the Australian states. The driest months, as well as the hottest months, are January and February, making them the best months for a beach getaway.
The best time to visit Adelaide for warm-weather activities is from September to March which is also the harvest season – the ideal time to visit for wine lovers. If, on the other hand, you are looking forward to some snow, Adelaide is not the right destination as snow here is rare. Only Mount Lofty in Adelaide Hills may get a light dusting of snow.
June is one of the best months for a family vacation as it is whale watching season. Ultimately, deciding what is the best time to visit Adelaide for you, comes down to your preference and what you want to do and see while in South Australia.
Rain or shine, when out and about on your adventure, don't forget to store your belongings in a safe luggage storage location here in Adelaide.
Summer in Adelaide: December - February
Summer is the best time to visit Adelaide and hit the beach. The weather is dry and hot with an average temperature of 80.6 °F (27 °F) and can reach a high of 113 °F (45 °C). If you are planning on traveling to the Flinders Ranges, keep in mind that it is hotter than Kangaroo Island.
The summer heat in Adelaide can be extremely intense and not very pleasant for outdoor activities unless they include water. To avoid a sunburn, make sure you wear sunscreen of at least SPF of 30+ for maximum protection, a wide-brimmed hat, and seek shade whenever possible, especially between 11 am and 3 pm. It goes without saying that this kind of weather requires light summer clothing.
Events and things to do in summer in Adelaide are many. Wine lovers will appreciate the harvest season in late summer and the beginning of fall. Day trips to the most famous wine regions like the Adelaide Hills, McLaren Vale and Barossa Valley are a must.
If you are in Adelaide in December, the Christmas season is a must-visit, where people get to enjoy free concerts and fireworks after a fun New Year's Eve Party. But don't forget that Christmas in Adelaide means hot weather. Summer is also the best time to visit Adelaide for the summer markets at Glenelg and Seacliff or to go cycling through Kuitpo Forest or Onkaparinga River National Park.
The summer months are reserved for the most historic market in South Australia, the Adelaide Central Market. You can either do a tour on your own or you can book a tour with a local who will drive you around on an EcoCaddy (a pedal-powered vehicle).
Garden of Unearthly Designs is one of the busiest festivals in summer, taking place from February 13 to March 15. Visitors get to enjoy multiple cultural events from music to comedy as well as circus theatre.
December, January, and February are some of the most popular months for travel to Adelaide, despite the hot weather. Keep in mind that this time of the year flights and hotel prices may be higher than during the shoulder season in spring and fall.
Fall in Adelaide: March - May
Fall is one of the best times to visit Adelaide. The temperature ranges between 55°F - 73°F (12.7°C to 22.7°C). This is still pleasant weather in Adelaide with a little rainfall and it is shoulder season, meaning crowds are less, and prices on flights and lodging are lower too.
South Australian autumn doesn't require you to pack your usual fall essentials. You can get by with layers and sweaters for the breezier nights, but comfortable shoes are a must, because you will be doing a lot of walking.
Fall is the perfect time to take a day trip to the wineries at Adelaide Hills and McLaren Vale region not only for the harvest but for the beautifully-colored fall scenery too. A trip to Mount Lofty Botanic Garden is an excellent way to see pretty spectacular autumn foliage and go apple and fig picking. The entire Adelaide region is dressed in fall colors, a picture-perfect sight you must capture on camera.
Fall weather allows for some of the best festivals to take place in Adelaide. The first spring month is known as Mad March for its multiple events and festivals happening at the same time. The good times start with the Adelaide Fringe Festival which lasts from mid-February to mid-March and the contemporary music festival WOMADelaide, to several sporting events like the supercars road race, international cricket competition, and a horse-racing cup among many others.
It will be real madness trying to decide which one to go to, but if you are in the city for the entire month of March, you may be able to attend most. However, keep in mind that because of all these events, planning on visiting Adelaide in March may not be the best time if you are traveling on a budget.
April is famous for the Barossa Vintage Festival, featuring over 75 events involving food, wine, arts and more across the Barossa Valley. Kangaroo Island is a host to the New shoots Music Festival at the beginning of April, followed by the Sound by the River, an award-winning concert happening at the Mannum Golf Club.
Come May, the annual History Festival begins to attract visitors alongside the bi-annual DreamBIG Children's Festival.
Besides the events and festivals, there are tons of things to do in the city in the fall. Visit historic landmarks and museums without having to wait in long lines and take advantage of public transport when the tourist crowds are not in full swing yet.
Winter in Adelaide: June - August
Adelaide has mild winters with temperatures ranging from 46.5 - 60.8°F ( 8 - 16°C). A light dusting of snow occurs on the Adelaide Hills, and there is hardly any snow in the city. The heaviest snowfall in South Australia was recorded on July 19th, 1951. Prior to this snowfall, there was another heavy one in 1901.
However, rainfall in Adelaide during winter is common, with June being the wettest month, averaging around 3.1 inches (80 mm) of precipitation. So, don't forget to pack your umbrella as it rains on average 10 days a month. Winter temperatures in Adelaide are mild, so it won't be necessary to pack all of your warm winter essentials. Sweaters, scarves and a waterproof rain jacket should do just fine.
Due to the mild winters, events and festivals continue to be part of the locals everyday life. There are tons of events happening during the winter months starting with the Winter Reds festival in the Adelaide Hills. During this time most cellars and restaurants at the Adelaide Hills have great deals on their best red wine. To make it even more fun, there is live music, masterclasses and fairs.
Winter is the perfect time to visit Adelaide for the South Australian Living Arts Festival (SALA), which takes place for the entire month of August. This festival celebrates the work of around 8,000 living contemporary visual artists of South Australia, promoting it in over 500 venues across the city, from libraries, galleries and cafes, to bookshops and churches.
During winter, tourists can attend other festivals like the Almond Blossom Festival in the town of Willunga, The Adelaide Festival of Ideas, the Adelaide Hills Beer and Cider Showcase and the Sea and Vines Festival in McLaren Vale celebrating wine, food, and the beach lifestyle.
From June to September, most tourists flock to the coastline of Kangaroo Island, Eyre Peninsula and Fleurieu Peninsula for the Southern Right whales annual migration, one of the best things you can do in Adelaide in winter.
Traveling to Adelaide in the winter months may not be one of the best times to visit Adelaide, but it certainly is pleasant even for warm-weather travelers. Since the winter months see fewer tourists, the prices on flights and accommodation may be lower.
Spring in Adelaide: September - November
Spring in Adelaide is one of the best times to visit for the lush green parks, flowers blooming, and the popular jacaranda trees lining up the streets of South Australia in full bloom this time of the year. Although it's a favorite season to many South Australians, spring is off-season, which means you may be able to score good deals on plane tickets and hotels. What's even better is you'll get to avoid the crowds.
The average temperatures range between 53.2 - 71.6°F (11.8 - 22°C) and rainfall is still low allowing visitors to enjoy as many outdoor activities as possible. The nighttime temperatures can drop quickly so it's best to pack a few cardigans and scarves, a few long sleeves tops and jackets. Layering is recommended this time of the year.
Spring is the ideal time to visit Adelaide with friends and family. The weather allows for families to enjoy a visit to Adelaide Zoo, watch a play at Victoria Square, go cycling at River Torrens Linear Park or go on a kayak adventure on Port Noarlunga Reef. From long, walks, picnics, and day trips to sightseeing or attending some of the best festivals in Adelaide, spring is undoubtedly one of the best times to visit Adelaide.
Spring is the time of the year to embark on Willunga's Almond Blossom Trail and visit the parks and gardens to see the flowers bloom. The longer days and pleasant weather are excellent for events and festivals.
Adelaide Film Festival takes place in mid-October, at the same time as OzAsia Festival which is a three-week-long festival celebrating Asian cultures. November or Pridevember is reserved for the Feast Festival when members of the LGBTIQ+ community celebrate diversity and inclusivity through arts and cultural events.
Tarnanthi Festival starts on the 20th of October and lasts way until the end of January. The Festival celebrates contemporary Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art from across Australia through various exhibitions, performances, artist talks, and an Art Fair.
Spring in Adelaide is perfect to take a trip to the city. You will see far fewer crowds than in June, July, and August, and possibly better deals on accommodation and flights.
What is the best time to visit Adelaide for you?
With hot summers and mild winters, Adelaide's climate allows for visiting the city at any time of the year. There is something happening every month, so when it comes to making your travel plans, it is best to narrow it down to what you want to see and do.
If your work holiday matches your kid's school holiday in June, then a whale watching tour would be the adventure of a lifetime. If you want to visit Adelaide for food and wine, the best time to visit is late summer and fall, during the harvest season.
Ultimately, the best time to visit Adelaide for good weather and budget-conscious travelers is from March to May and from September to November.
Know what you want to do during your trip to Adelaide? Check out these guides for inspiration!