Where to Stay in Adelaide (2019 • COOLEST Areas!)

Adelaide is one of the most underrated cities in Australia. It is centrally located and surrounded by wine regions and has stylish architecture, excellent beaches, delicious food, and vivid nightlife. In short, Adelaide is absolutely one of Australia’s best-kept secrets.

But it is a massive city and choosing the best neighbourhood to stay in Adelaide can be very overwhelming. Which is exactly why we wrote this guide for where to stay in Adelaide.

This Adelaide neighbourhood guide was written with one thing in mind – to help YOU find the best neighbourhood to stay in based on what YOU want to do. So whether that’s lounging on the beach, exploring the art scene or partying all night long, this guide will show you everything you need to know – and more – about Adelaide’s best neighbourhoods.

So get excited – here are our best recommendations for where to stay in Adelaide, Australia.

 

Quick Tips – Where to Stay in Adelaide

  • Where to stay in Adelaide for your first time – Adelaide CBD
  • Where to stay in Adelaide on a budget – Adelaide CBD
  • The best area to stay in Adelaide for nightlife – West End
  • The coolest place to stay in Adelaide – Port Adelaide
  • Best neighbourhood in Adelaide for families – North Adelaide

 

In a hurry? Here’s my top neighborhood for first timers:

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Adelaide CBD
The CBD is the best neighbourhood to stay in Adelaide if you’re visiting the city for the first time. Set at the heart of the city, this neighbourhood covers just one square mile and is packed with exciting activities and interesting attractions.
Places to Visit:
  • Delve deep into history at the South Australian Museum.
  • Dine on delicious Italian fare at Andre’s Cucina & Polenta Bar.
  • Eat fresh and tasty meals at Chianti.

 

Where to Stay in Adelaide

Looking for a specific place to stay? These are our highest recommendations for places to stay in Adelaide.

 

Best Hostel in Adelaide: The Guesthouse – Backpack Oz

The Guesthouse – Backpack Oz is our favourite hostel in Adelaide. This hostel offers clean, comfortable and spacious accommodations right at the heart of the city. It has key card access, air-conditioned rooms, and TVs in private rooms. Guests can also enjoy free wifi and a continental breakfast.

Need to spend some quality time with fellow backpackers? Get your fix by staying at one of these amazing hostels in Adelaide!

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Best Hotel in Adelaide: Quest Port Adelaide

Quest Port Adelaide is our favourite hotel in Adelaide. It is situated at the centre of the neighbourhood and is within walking distance of restaurants, shops and bars. Each apartment is equipped with air conditioning, a kitchenette and refrigerator. There’s also free wifi and concierge services.

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Adelaide Neighbourhood Guide

Quick Summary: The Best Places to Stay in Adelaide

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Adelaide CBD

  • The CBD is the best neighbourhood to stay in Adelaide if you’re visiting the city for the first time. Set at the heart of the city, this neighbourhood covers just one square mile and is packed with exciting activities and interesting attractions.
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Adelaide CBD

  • In addition to being the city’s central tourist hub, Adelaide CBD is also our top pick for where to stay if you’re travelling on a budget. Dotted throughout this compact city centre is a high concentration of Adelaide accommodation options that will meet any budget.
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West End

  • The West End of downtown Adelaide is our best recommendation for where to stay in Adelaide for nightlife. Adelaide’s West End has been a hub for entertainment since the mid-20th century and today it boasts a high concentration of live music venues and dance clubs as well as wine bars, pubs, restaurants and cafes.
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Port Adelaide

  • Port Adelaide is one of the coolest places to stay in Adelaide. This often-overlooked neighbourhood is located about 30 minutes northwest of the city centre.
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North Adelaide

  • North Adelaide is our best recommendation for where to stay in Adelaide with kids. This charming neighbourhood is located north of the city centre and is bursting with fun and exciting things to see and do for travellers of all ages.
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Adelaide is a massive and sprawling city.

It is the capital and largest city in the state of South Australia and sits surrounded by verdant wine regions. The city is packed with an excellent variety of things to see and do. From stunning architecture and vibrant culture to delicious food, excellent cafes, and lively nightlife, there’s something for everyone in exciting Adelaide.

In this guide, we’ll look at the best areas to stay in Adelaide based on your interests, budget and needs.

At the heart of the city is Adelaide Central Business District (CBD). This is the best neighbourhood in Adelaide to stay in if you’re visiting for the first time because it’s where you’ll find the city’s most famous tourist attractions, landmarks, restaurants and shops.

In addition to all that, Adelaide CBD is also where you’ll find a high concentration of budget hostels, hotels and vacation rentals, making it our top pick for where to stay in Adelaide for one night, or if you’re on a budget.

The West End neighbourhood is our number one choice for where to stay in Adelaide for nightlife because you can enjoy everything from lively pubs and exciting nightclubs to sophisticated wine bars and delectable eateries.

Travel north from here to North Adelaide, our top recommendation for where to stay in Adelaide for families. This verdant and central neighbourhood boasts an incredible selection of family-friendly activities and attractions including the Zoo and Botanic Gardens.

And finally, northwest of the city centre is Port Adelaide, one of the coolest places to stay in Adelaide. It has a vast array of shops, cafes, bars and restaurants as well as a selection of interesting museums and plenty of stunning sights.

Looking for more details on traveling to Adelaide? Check out our EPIC guide to backpacking Adelaide!

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Pssssst! Not picked the perfect travel backpack yet? The Broke Backpacker team has tried out over thirty backpacks this year! Our favourite carry on backpack is the Nomatic Travel Backpack.

Check out this post to read our full review!

 

Adelaide’s 5 Best Neighbourhoods to Stay in

Now, let’s take a look, in more detail, at the five best places to stay in Adelaide. Each is a little different from the last so be sure to read each section carefully and choose the neighbourhood that’s the best fit for you!

 

#1 Adelaide CBD – Where to Stay in Adelaide for Your First Time

The CBD is the best neighbourhood to stay in Adelaide if you’re visiting the city for the first time. Set at the heart of the city, this neighbourhood covers just one square mile and is packed with exciting activities and interesting attractions. From historical landmarks and cultural institutions to vibrant bars and delicious restaurants, Adelaide CBD has something that will pique the interest of any and all travellers.

For history buffs, Adelaide CBD is the place to be. This small but lively neighbourhood is home to some of the city’s most famous museums and art galleries, which showcase fabulous exhibits and fantastic displays.

 

Adelaide CBD, Adelaide

 

Things to See and Do in Adelaide CBD

– Delve deep into history at the South Australian Museum.

– Dine on delicious Italian fare at Andre’s Cucina & Polenta Bar.

– Eat fresh and tasty meals at Chianti.

– Excite your sense at Jasmin Indian Restaurant.

– Feast on succulent and savoury Asian dishes throughout Adelaide’s Chinatown.

– Grab a quick snack at Roxies.

– See one of Australia’s finest art collections at the Art Gallery of South Australia.

– Shop until you drop at Rundle Mall – and don’t forget to snap a picture with the iconic Rundle Mall pigs.

– Step back in time at the Ayers House Museum.

 

Best Hostel in Adelaide CBD: Backpack Oz

This relaxed and social hostel is located at the heart of the CBD, the best neighbourhood in Adelaide to stay in if you’re visiting for the first time. It has comfortable rooms and excellent features, and they offer a variety of FREE extras, like pizza, chilli and ice cream nights.

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Best Hotel in Adelaide CBD: Majestic Roof Garden Hotel

The Majestic Roof Garden Hotel is an excellent option for Adelaide accommodation. It is situated at the centre of the city and is close to popular shopping, sightseeing and dining areas. This chic hotel has modern and well-equipped rooms and a rooftop terrace that offers impressive city views.

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Best Hotel in Adelaide CBD: Pullman Adelaide

This excellent five-star hotel is one of the best places to stay in Adelaide. Centrally located in the CBD, you’ll find plenty of shops, restaurants, museums and attractions nearby. This luxury hotel boasts a sauna, a lap pool and a Jacuzzi as well as a delicious on-site restaurant.

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#2 Adelaide CBD – Where to Stay in Adelaide on a Budget

In addition to being the city’s central tourist hub, Adelaide CBD is also our top pick for where to stay if you’re travelling on a budget. Dotted throughout this compact city centre is a high concentration of Adelaide accommodation options that will meet any budget.

From backpacker hostels and boutique hotels to charming vacation rentals and chic home stays, Adelaide CBD is bursting with opportunities to enjoy the city and save a little money while you’re at it!

The CBD is also home to the incredible Central Market where you’ll find a vast array of stalls and shops selling cheap and delicious eats, sweets, treats and more!

Adelaide CBD, Adelaide

 

Things to See and Do in Adelaide CBD

– Browse the stacks at the incredible State Library of South Australia.

– Dive deep into the social history of migration in Australia at the Migration Museum.

– Eat well at Ying Chow.

– Grab a pint at the busy and buzzing Gilbert St Hotel.

– Indulge in fresh and delicious Asian and Korean dishes at Mandoo.

– Pack a picnic and enjoy a peaceful day in sunny and beautiful Elder Park.

– Sample, snack and feast you want through the massive Adelaide Central Market.

– Snap a pic of the Slide, a unique bronze statue in central Adelaide.

 

Best Hostel in Adelaide CBD: The Guesthouse – Backpack Oz

The Guesthouse – Backpack Oz is our favourite hostel in Adelaide. This hostel offers clean, comfortable and spacious accommodations right at the heart of the city. It has key card access, air-conditioned rooms, and TVs in private rooms. Guests can also enjoy free wifi and a continental breakfast.

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Best Hotel in Adelaide CBD: Mercure Grosvenor Hotel Adelaide

This four-star hotel is ideally located in central Adelaide. It is close to Rundle Mall, the Railway Station and is well-connected throughout the city. Rooms are bright and offer free wireless internet along with modern amenities and features. There’s also a delicious on-site restaurant and comfortable lounge bar.

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Best Hotel in Adelaide CBD: The Soho Hotel an Ascend Hotel Collection Member

Modern and exciting, this is one of the best places to stay in Adelaide. It boasts a stunning rooftop pool and terrace as well as an in-house spa and wellness centre. Rooms are equipped with air conditioning and have a range of feature to ensure guests have an exceptional stay.

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#3 West End – Where to Stay in Adelaide for Nightlife

The West End of downtown Adelaide is our best recommendation for where to stay in Adelaide for nightlife. Adelaide’s West End has been a hub for entertainment since the mid-20th century and today it boasts a high concentration of live music venues and dance clubs as well as wine bars, pubs, restaurants and cafes. So, if you want to dance the night away or enjoy a few glasses of local wine, Adelaide’s West End is the neighbourhood for you!

Culture vultures will also love exploring the West End thanks to the progressive arts centres and cultural institutions as well as the dynamic design studios that call this neighbourhood home.

West End, Adelaide

 

Things to See and Do in West End

– Dine on delicious sushi at Shiki.

– Drink gin cocktails at Clever Little Tailor.

– Enjoy stunning views at Rocket Bar & Rooftop.

– Excite your sense at 2KW Bar and Restaurant.

– Feast on Australian food at Pink Moon Saloon.

– Grab snacks and drinks at Hains & Co.

– Head to Proof for hip cocktails and wine.

– Indulge at Georges on Waymouth.

– Pass through a hidden door and enjoy a great night out at Maybe Mae.

– Sip an excellent glass of wine at La Buvette.

– Spend a night at the Bank Street Social, a Prohibition-era speakeasy.

 

Wonder how to spend a weekend in Adelaide? Head over to our insider’s Weekend in Adelaide guide!

 

Best Hostel in West End: Adelaide Central YHA

This hostel is one of the best places in Adelaide to stay for nightlight because it is within walking distance of the best bars, clubs, restaurants and cafes. It offers newly renovated rooms with free-wifi and new furniture and linens. This modern hostel also boasts a large kitchen, comfortable common room, air conditioning and more.

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Best Hotel in West End: Peppers Waymouth Hotel

The Peppers Waymouth Hotel is ideally located for going out in Adelaide. It is a short stroll from popular restaurant and shops, as well as some of the best bars and clubs in the city. This five-star hotel has comfortable and modern rooms and provides a sauna, swimming pool and Jacuzzi.

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Best Hotel in West End: The Playford Adelaide – MGallery by Sofitel

A great location, beautiful pool and a fantastic bar – it’s no wonder this is one of the best places in Adelaide to stay! This award-winning art-nouveau hotel has cosy rooms with comfortable beds and private bathrooms. There’s also a range of on-site features, like a restaurant and sauna.

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#4 Port Adelaide – Coolest Place to Stay in Adelaide

Port Adelaide is one of the coolest places to stay in Adelaide. This often-overlooked neighbourhood is located about 30 minutes northwest of the city centre. Still a working port, Port Adelaide has undergone a recent revival and is today home to hip pubs and trendy restaurants as well as shops, museums and landmarks. Here you can enjoy a range of activities and attractions away from the hoards of tourists.

This is without a doubt one of the best areas to stay in Adelaide for architecture buffs because it’s where you’ll find some of the best preserved and most beautiful heritage buildings in South Australia.

Port Adelaide, Adelaide

 

Things to See and Do in Port Adelaide

– Browse the engaging National Railway Museum.

– Delve deep into the South Australian Aviation Museum.

– Dine on flavourful food at Spice N Ice Indian Restaurant.

– Feast on savoury and saucy dishes at Low & Slow American BBQ.

– Grab a pint at the Dockside Tavern.

– Satisfy your sweet tooth at Pancakes At The Port.

– Shop your way through Fishermen’s Wharf Market.

– Sip a cappuccino and enjoy a delicious breakfast at Dutch Coffee Lab.

– Visit the Port Adelaide Lighthouse.

 

Best Hostel in Port Adelaide: Port Adelaide Backpackers

This hostel is ideally located in Port Adelaide, the best area in Adelaide to stay in for hipsters and trendsetters. It is close to a variety of pubs, shops and restaurants, and offers easy access to the beach. This hotel has free parking and wifi, comfortable dorm and private rooms, and provides a myriad of modern features.

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Best Hotel in Port Adelaide: Quest Port Adelaide

Quest Port Adelaide is our favourite hotel in Adelaide. It is situated at the centre of the neighbourhood and is within walking distance of restaurants, shops and bars. Each apartment is equipped with air conditioning, a kitchenette and refrigerator. There’s also free wifi and concierge services.

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Best Hotel in Port Adelaide: Dolphin Cove Adelaide

Dolphin Cove Adelaide is ideally located in Port Adelaide, one of Adelaide’s best neighbourhoods. This property has comfortable rooms that are well-equipped to meet the needs of any travellers. It is close to the area’s most famous attractions, including the Fisherman’s Wharf Market and the Port Adelaide Lighthouse.

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#5 North Adelaide – Where to Stay in Adelaide for Families

North Adelaide is our best recommendation for where to stay in Adelaide with kids. This charming neighbourhood is located north of the city centre and is bursting with fun and exciting things to see and do for travellers of all ages.

This part of the city is best known for its expansive parks and green spaces. Here you can get back to nature or explore one of the many attractions that call these areas home, including the Adelaide Oval, the Adelaide Zoo and the Adelaide Botanical Garden.

But there’s more to North Adelaide than parks. North Adelaide is also well-known for its stately homes, heritage pubs, high-end boutiques and its cosy cafes.

North Adelaide, Adelaide

 

Things to See and Do in North Adelaide

– Excite your senses at Zapata’s Mexican.

– Feast on excellent Italian dishes at Ruby Red Flamingo.

– Marvel at the beautiful St. Peter’s Cathedral.

– Pack a picnic and enjoy an afternoon surrounded by nature at Peace Park.

– See your favourite species of exotic and local mammals, reptiles, birds, fish and more at the Adelaide Zoo.

– Sink your teeth into a succulent burger at the Cathedral Hotel.

– Stop and smell the roses at the Adelaide Botanic Garden.

– Tour the Adelaide Oval, Adelaide’s historic cricket oval and events centre.

 

Best Hotel in North Adelaide: Adelaide Meridien Hotel & Apartments

This four-star property is our top pick for where to stay in Adelaide for families because it offers good-value and spacious accommodations near the heart of the city. This unique hotel has excellent features, like a Jacuzzi and swimming pool, and offers free bike rentals and an a la carte breakfast.

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Best Hotel in North Adelaide: North Adelaide Boutique Stays Accommodation

These apartments are a great option for where to stay in Adelaide with kids. This property is close to the Adelaide Zoo and Botanic Gardens and offers easy access to the CBD. Each apartment has modern décor, air-conditioning and free wifi. They also offer onsite bike rentals.

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Best Hotel in North Adelaide: Majestic Old Lion Apartments

This property is centrally located in Adelaide and is close to popular shops, cafes and attractions. Each apartment has comfortable and traditional furnishings and comes complete with a kitchen, sofa bed and wifi. There’s also an on-site restaurant and relaxing bar.

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Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Adelaide

Adelaide is a vibrant and exciting city that offers so much to travellers. It has an eclectic food scene, interesting art, great museums and lush natural surroundings. So whether you’re looking to relax, explore, party or shop, there’s something for everyone in sunny, central Adelaide.

In this guide, we’ve looked at the best areas to stay in Adelaide. If you’re still not sure which is right for you, here is a quick recap of our favourite accommodation options.

The Guesthouse – Backpack Oz is our favourite hostel because it has comfortable and spacious rooms with air-conditioning. They also provide free wifi, continental breakfast and key card access.

Another great option is the Quest Port Adelaide. Located in the hip Port Adelaide neighbourhood, each apartment comes complete with a kitchenette and air-con to ensure maximum comfort.

Don’t forget to sort your travel insurance! We’ve put together a roundup of the best travel insurance for backpackers – check it out here, or if you’re low on time, get a quote from World Nomads now, our favourite travel insurance provider.

 

Do you own an awesome hostel, hotel or apartment? Want to be featured in our list? Email hostels@thebrokebackpacker.com to find out how.

Yay for transparency! Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you book your accommodation through the site, The Broke Backpacker will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Your support helps me keep the site going.


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