Every year on January 26, Australia celebrates its official national day – Australia Day. On 1788, the first fleet of British ships arrived in New South Wales and the flag of Great Britain was raised at Port Jackson. Over the past few decades interest and participation in Australia Day has been on the rise and all the states and territories now celebrate this public holiday at the same time. From fireworks to barbecues, concerts to festivals and sports matches, there are a multitude of events planned around the country to mark Australia Day 2015.
In Adelaide (or indeed, South Australia at large) the key celebrations are part of ‘Australia Day in the City’, a parade, concert and fireworks display held in Elder Park that draws more than 40,000 attendees. A range of food and drinks will be available throughout the day, with stalls to suit all tastes.
There will be street closures; this is the country’s largest Australia Day Parade. More than 4,000 people walked through the streets of Adelaide in 2014 celebrating all the things they love about Australia, including cultural and community groups, marching bands, floats and roving performances as well as vintage vehicles. After kicking off at 6pm and winding through the city streets, the parade converges on Elder Park at 7pm for the twilight Australia Day concert.
The free family friendly concert has attracted some of Australia’s biggest and most popular acts over the past 10 years – past performers have included Jimmy Barnes, Vanessa Amorosi, and Stan Walker. The nearby Torrens Lake and Riverbank area provide an idyllic backdrop for the acts.
Australia Day in the City concludes with a spectacular fireworks finale. The best vantage spots for watching the fireworks are Elder Park itself, on the grass in front of the Adelaide Casino, Intercontinental Hotel and Adelaide Convention Centre; or along the River Torrens on the Northern side near Adelaide Oval.
If you’re going to be in Adelaide for Australia Day 2015, Hertz Adelaide has you covered with an Adelaide airport car hire. Parking will be available at Adelaide City Council UPark stations, plus there will also be on street parking around the city of Adelaide. (No public parking with be available at Torrens Parade Grounds.) Elder Park is on King William Road, next to the Adelaide Festival Centre on the River Torrens. Getting to Australia Day in the City is also easy on public transport, with bus, train and tram stops within walking distance of Elder Park.