City Discovery: The “20 Minute City” of Adelaide

Discover Adelaide

Adelaide is known as the “20 minute city” because any major point in the city can be reached within 20 minutes. This is due in part to to the superior transportation and city planning infrastructure.

The capital of South Australia, Adelaide was established as a free city, and was the only Australian capital city founded by free settlers (not as a convict colony). Since its inception, Adelaide has maintained it’s free thinking attitude by being the first to abolish sexual and racial discrimination, capital punishment, the first to recognize Aboriginal land rights and the first to grant suffrage to women.

Don’t miss these Discovery Compass activities in Adelaide!

Intercultural experiences highlight exposure with the local culture, promoting a multilateral exchange of ideas, language and opinions.

Visit The Tandaya National Aboriginal Cultural Institute. It is the oldest Aboriginal owned and managed multi-arts center in Australia and its name reflects its commitment and honor to the traditional owners and custodians of the Adelaide Plains, the Kuarna People.

The South Australian Museum is another great place to learn about the Aborginal culture of the region. The museum is home to the Australian Aboriginal Cultures Gallery which is open year round, and features over 3,000 artifacts, as well as a wealth of knowledge regarding the adaptation of Aboriginal groups throughout the thousands of years they have inhabited the continent.

ISA excursions and cultural activities highlight historical parts of the local culture to help students better understand their new environment.

A trip to Carrick Hill will give visitors a glimpse inside Australia’s most intact twentieth-century house museum and garden sites. There are very few intact homes from this period left in Australia and this is a stunning example complete with paintings, sculptures and antiques.

Steeped in South Australian history, Adelaide’s Town Hall is not to be missed. Built in 1866, the building is a tribute to the skills of the former architect and Mayor of the city, Edmund Wright. The stately building has hosted some of the most famous people, past and present, through community events, notable musical performances and unparalleled festivals.


Sociopolitical discovery highlights social and political activities or experiences.

The Migration Museum is a social history museum that works towards the preservation, understanding and enjoyment of South Australia’s diverse cultures. It is a place to discover the many identities of people of South Australia through the stories of individuals and communities.

The Parliament House in Adelaide is the seat of Parliament in South Australia. It is a classically designed building with majestic architecture, and allows visitors to sit in on Parliament meetings, or take tours when Parliament is not in session.


Professional experiences provide exposure to professional development opportunities during an ISA program.

The University of Adelaide offers one of the most unique disciplines for study, not just in Australia, but in the world. The Oenology program, or Winemaking Science, allows study abroad students to be exposed to the basic foundations of wine science, wine making, and viticulture (production and study of grapes).

Get involved with some of the clubs and societies on campus. These organizations are open to study abroad students and will allow access to many social, academic, and career events throughout the semester.

Environmental experiences expose students to different environmental aspects of the host country.

Meander through the Adelaide Zoo. The zoo is Australia’s second oldest and the only major metropolitan zoo in Australia to be owned and operated on a non-profit basis. It is home to over 2,500 animals – including 250 species of exotic and native animals.

Get up close and personal with conservation and animals at the Cleland Wildlife Park. Home to South Australia’s most iconic animals, the Cleland Wildlife Park has been committed to maintaining a sustainable environment by helping visitors connect with the wildlife.


Discover all of this and more during a study abroad program in Adelaide.

The 2015 City Discovery Series aims to showcase one of ISA’s program locations each week. Facts about each location and Discovery Compass activity examples are given, highlighting the areas of Intercultural, Historical, Sociopolitical, Professional and Environmental discovery. The Discovery Compass aims to help students have the best possible study abroad experience by helping them to gain a better understanding of the local environment, customs and people through a variety of experiences.


Author: International Studies Abroad (ISA)

Since 1987, International Studies Abroad (ISA) has provided college students in the United States and Canada the opportunity to explore the world. ISA offers a wide variety of study abroad programs at accredited schools and universities in 73 program locations throughout the world.

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