These day tours of Adelaide - the capital city of South Australia and the driest state in the driest continent of the world - will take you through landscapes that range from enormous desert plains dotted with salt lakes to wet lands, from long lines of ancient weathered hills to towering coastal cliffs, from fertile strips of land hugging coast and river to patchy scrub harbouring an extraordinary variety of wildlife.
Adelaide is a gracious city of gardens, restored historic colonial pubs, churches and modern buildings. Victorian and Edwardian buildings and homes of the colonial era including their verandahs and meticulous ironwork - Adelaide lace - are lovingly preserved. At Port Adelaide many of the working port's 19th century buildings have been beautifully restored. South Australia produces over half of the nation's wine mainly in the Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale and the Coonawarra districts.
Australia's third largest island, Kangaroo Island, south of Adelaide, was discovered and named by Matthew Flinders in 1802. Many of its plants and animals are extinct elsewhere. It is the habitat of the kangaroo, wallaby, echidna, brush-tailed possum, southern brown bandicoot, Australian sea lion, New Zealand fur seal and introduced ring-tailed possum, koala, emu, Cape Barren goose and platypus. 200 bird species, reptiles and 443 native plants are also protected. The Great Southern Ocean from Antarctica pounds its southern shores.
South Australia's wine growing regions are world-renowned. The Barossa Valley and the McLaren Vale are both within an hour's drive of Adelaide. The Coonawarra Region where the precious Terrarossa (red soil) is less than 10 miles long and just over a mile wide is a 4-hour drive. It produces the legendary Cabernet Sauvignon.