Adelaide is the most heavily populated city and the capital of South Australia. It is also the fifth largest city in the country and has a population over over one million people. This city was named in honor of the consort of King William IV, Queen Adelaide. Since the city is the government seat and the commercial hub of South Australia, it is home to many different financial and governmental institutions. The city’s economy is based upon the defense sector, research and manufacturing. Large companies that have their operations based in the city include General Motors Holden, News Corporation, Argo Investments, Santos, Harris Scarfe and Coopers.
The establishment of Adelaide can be traced back to the nineteenth century, when British Captain Matthew Flinders chartered the southern coast of Australia. He named the area Mount Lofty, but made little survey of the area on which Adelaide is built. Twenty-nine years later, a more extensive survey of the area was performed by Captain Collet Barker. His survey convinced a group led by Edward Gibbon Wakefield to advocate the establishment of a colony. In 1834, British Parliament passed the South Australian Colonisation Act. Edward Gibbon Wakefield wanted the new colony to be named Wellington, but King William IV favored the name of his consort for the name of the colony’s new capital. The colony and its province was named and laid out before any visitor ever came to the area.
Today, Adelaide is a thriving center of commerce and has many attractions to offer visitors. One of the more popular attractions in the city is the Adelaide Botanic Garden. This botanical garden is situated on one hundred and twenty-five acres. The main features of this garden include Palm house, The Rose Garden and Bicentennial Conservatory. Bicentennial Conservatory was contructed in 1987 and opened to the public two years later. It is three hundred and twenty-eight feet long, one hundred and fifty-four feet wide and eighty-nine feet high. The Conservatory is home to endangered tropical rainforest plants from the South Pacific Islands, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and Northern Australia.
Adjacent to the Adelaide Botanic Garden is Adelaide Zoo. This zoo is the second oldest zoo in the country and the only metropolitan zoo to be owned on a non profit basis. This zoo has over three hundred species and over eighteen hundred animals on eight hectares of land. Adelaide Zoo was founded in 1883 on land given by the government. Exhibits located here include South East Asia Exhibit, Children’s Zoo, Australian Region, Jewels of Asia Aviary, Ungulates, Macaw Aviaries, South American Region, Australian Habitat Aviaries, Westpac Envirodome and Australian Bush Aviaries. Animals that can be found at this zoo include Sumatran Tigers, Dusky Leaf Monkeys, Night Herons, Malayan Sun Bears, Green Peafowls, White-cheeked Gibbons, Sumatran Orangutans, Tasmanian Devils, Kangaroos, Long-nosed Potoroos, Hairy-nosed Wombats, Rock Wallabys, Kookaburra, Golden Pheasants, Whistling Ducks, Mandarin Ducks, Tree Shrews, Australorp Chickens, Miniature goats, Western Grey Kangaroos, Guinea pigs, Dusky Woodswallows, Peaceful Doves, Star Finch, Hooded Plover, Eastern Whipbirds and Hooded Robins. Another prominent attraction in the city is the Art Gallery of South Australia. This gallery was founded in 1881 and has been at its current location since 1900. It has a collection of over thirty-five thousand works of art and the gallery receives over half a million visitors each and every year. Artists represented by the collection include F. A. Joyner, Ralph Balson, Ferdinand Bauer, Clarice Beckett, Martha Berkeley, John Glover, W.B. Gould and Bessie Davidson.
The South Australian Museum is a popular attraction in Adelaide. It was founded in 1856 and is located in a complex of building in the precinct of North Parklands. This museum contains the largest collection of Aborigine artifacts in the country. Other notable artifacts and exhibits include the Huckitta meteorite, Major Peter Badcoe’s Victoria Cross, Marine creatures, Egyptian collection and Native birds. Not too far from the South Australian Museum is the State Library of South Australia. This is the larges public library in the state and contains an extensive collection of reference materials. Collections that are located here include the General Reference Collections, Heritage Collections, Rare Books and Children’s Literature Research Collection.
Just about six miles from downtown Adelaide is the Cleland Conservation Park. This conservation park protects a large area of bushland and includes Waterfall Gully, Mount Lofty and Cleland Wildlife Park. Cleland Wildlife Park allows visitors to walk through enclosures and interact with Australian animals such as emus, kangaroos, dingos and koalas. Another prominent attraction is Warrawong Sanctuary. Warrawong Sanctuary is situated on eighty five acres and is purpose is to protect and rehabilitate wild animals. Animals in the collection include Western Grey Kangaroos, Red Kangaroos, Black Wallaby, Red-necked Wallaby, Western Brush-tailed Bettong, Ringtail Possum, Brushtail Possum, Tammar Wallaby, Long-nosed Potoroo, Southern Brown Bandicoot, Red-necked Pademelon, Rufous Bettong and Platypus.
Another popular attraction in Adelaide is the Wheal Hughes Copper Mine. This was a busy copper mine during the nineteenth century, but is now a favorite among many tourists. The mine was named after a sea captain who had emigrated to South Australia during the mid-nineteenth century, Walter Watson Hughes. Features of this attraction include Tourist Train, Family History Center, Old Fashioned Sweet Shop, a museum and a Miners Cottage.
Other popular attractions in the city include National Railway Museum Port Adelaide, Adelaide Central Market, Great Southern Rail, The Seahorse Farm, Calypso Star Charter, Granite Island at Victor Harbour, Adelaide Migration Museum, Beehive Corner Building, Adelaide Gaol, South Australian Maritime Museum, Adelaide Oval, Adelaide Festival Center, Aldinga Beach, Penfolds Magill Winery, Australian Museum of Childhood, Belair Park Country Club, Ayers Historic House, Black Hill Conservation Park, Buddhist Temple Wat Ratanaprathib Vihara, Glenelg Golf Course, Brownhill Creek Recreation Park, Thorndon Park Reserve and Reservoir, Old Government House and Garden, Parliament House, Onkaparinga River Wetlands, Classic Jets Fighter Museum, City of Adelaide Golf Links, Investigator Science and Technology Center, St Francis Xavier Cathedral, Rundle Mall, Wilpena Pound Resort, Melba Chocolate & Confectionery Factory, Skye Cellars and Adelaide Symphony Orchestra.
The city of Adelaide is also home to a number of prominent restaurants and hotels. Popular restaurants in the city include Jasmin Indian Restaurant, Gaucho’s Argentinian Restaurant, Strathmore Balcony Restaurant and the National Wine Centre of Australia. Popular hotels in the city include the Medina Adelaide Grand Treasury, Mercure Grosvenor Hotel Adelaide, Holiday Inn Hotel, Majestic Roof Garden, Hotel Richmond and the Mercure Grosvenor Hotel.