So on arriving in Adelaide we noticed first off that it was a lot cooler than the Daintree which was a relief to start off with. We were looking forward to our trip to Kangaroo Island and whilst waiting for our taxi we rang to reconfirm our trip. Once again those incompetent people at kuoni had screwed up and we were booked to go on the trip that day even though we only arrived in the evening. We were pretty gutted as we were really looking forward to the trip and because we were there only for 2 full days and over the weekend they didn't have any spare places for another day. I won't bother going into all the detail about how angry I got with Kuoni over the next 5 days (yes that's how long it took them to get anything sorted) but my favourite quote has to be the following:
Me: Can you tell me what the complementary offering is going to be for us missing our trip and the diving screw up?"
Kuoni: Oh didn't you receive your bottle of wine?
Me: A bottle of Wine !!! That's all we get for you making us miss the trip of a lifetime?
Kuoni: So Miss are you telling me a bottle of wine is not sufficient.....
I won't bother repeating what my response to that was! But thankfully I managed to get things sorted.
So back to our adventures in Adelaide. We headed over to the hotel and checked in and the first thing we had to do was ask for a heater! By this point the novelty of the cooler weather had worn off (mid 20s rather than mid 30s) and I was also really not looking forward to going back to the UK if I was finding this weather cold.
Starvation was setting in so we headed out to find some quick food, just round the corner were a bunch of schoolies (high school graduates who had just finished) and several police cars, in the middle of the bunch one kid was being held down by 3 or 4 policemen and surrounded by about 7 others, despite this he was yelling at them to let him go or else, "I'll f***ing f*** you all up!!" (while his girlfriend was crying nearby), this did make us chuckle and forget about the cold weather.
We ended up getting a pizza with the most toppings I'd ever seen on a single pizza, Al had a hawaiian and I swear there were about 6 pigs and 3 whole plantations of pineapple on it, although stupidly I held it sideways on the way back and it all slid off and collected at the side of the box, whoops.
Our first day in Adelaide, we were at a bit of a loss as we'd been expecting to be going off to Kangaroo Island all day, so we just picked up a map and headed out into the city, we found the Central Market which was a huge indoor market with a vast array of stalls, most of which were selling foods of some kind, nearly all of which looked or smelled delicious. We picked up a few gourmet chocolates but not knowing what we'd be doing the rest of the day were content to just look around the rest.
We then headed over to Glenelg to see the sea and see what was going on over there, not that much as it turns out, but we booked ourselves on for a dolphin spotting cruise the next morning (there was an option to "swim" with the dolphins, but we didn't take it up, the swim is in quotes for a reason, see later).
We walked round the park down there, just generally enjoying the area and went into a local history museum, not realising what the time was and only had about 20 mins before it closed, doh.
We caught the tram back to the city centre (really good transport system there, $8 gets you a ticket to use the tram, bus or trains as much as you want for a day).
Had a bit of a wander around Rundle Street looking at the giant balls and all the Christmas decorations (It's really funny that all the Christmas stuff over there features snow and other typical Northern Hemisphere stuff even though it's their summer)
That evening was the rugby league world cup final between Australia and New Zealand so we thought we'd go to a local bar and watch it, assuming we'd be surrounded by Aussies cheering on the home nation.... The first bar we went into didn't even seem to know anything about any rugby league, although they were showing the soccer match in 10 mins, not seeming to realise that in fact they had already missed the first half.
Luckily someone at the bar knew what we were talking about and suggested a place we could go watch the match, just round the corner so we hurried out to get there before kickoff. We got to the Rosemount bar and we weren't quite sure we were in the right place as it was nearly empty, but the rugby was on and just starting so we grabbed a beer and a seat and settled down to watch the match, during half time we started chatting with a couple of Aussies from Melbourne who said that Adelaide didn't really do rugby, Soccer was their big sport and the same night was a match between Adelaide United and Sydney FC, Adelaide won 2-0, unfortunately Australia did a lot worse in the rugby.
To commiserate the loss the Aussies we were sat with insisted that we drink more and that a Jager Bomb was the perfect way to get going (a shot of Jaegermeister in a glass of redbull), doesn't taste as bad as it sounds, but is certainly as potent. Al ended up having a fairybomb instead, poncy name but you replace the jaegermeister with absinthe and it's not such a girlie drink.
There was more drinking at more bars but in the end we figured it was an a early start the next day and headed back to the hotel, we agreed to go out with the guys again the next night and swapped numbers, thankfully it didn't actually happen as I'm not sure we could have managed a heavier night and having to fly the morning after.
Sunday morning and we were back off to Glenelg to get on the boat and go dolphin spotting, the "swim" part consisted of dressing up in a wetsuit and snorkel and whenever the crew thought they saw dolphins coming our way to go and jump off the back of the boat, hang onto a line and stick your head in the water. We definitely saw a lot more of the dolphins from the deck and after a couple of goes of this a few of the swimmers realised the same and stopped going in.
For our part though it was really cool, the boat spent 3.5 hours going round the coast and we must have come across 6 or so different pods of dolphins, it was great to see them coming up so close to the boat and we got some pretty good pics.
After lunch we decided to head up to Belair National Park and have a look around the park Al used to go to when he was younger.
We got the slowest ever train out of Adelaide but it was only 30 mins up to the park, the station was literally right next to it too which was handy. The environment was such a contrast from the rainforest, up there everything was green, full of vines and overflowing all over the place, down in Adelaide it was a lot browner and sparser on the ground, but that makes for different animals and not 5 mins into the park we saw a red kangaroo bounding off, and just behind him was a little mob of other kangaroos, a few adults and some younger ones, what we guess was the alpha male was a bit wary and stood up and glared at us, I got a bit scared so we headed on into the park.
I could go on and on about it but the scenery was amazing and the weather was perfect for walking through the park, after picking up a drink half way round I spotted a koala in a tree, that by itself would be pretty awesome but this one was awake and moving (they sleep for 20 hours a day), we saw him bounding up this tree and nibbling at leaves, sounds boring but it was really different seeing it in the wild rather than just in a zoo.
We got some food from a restaurant nearby, where I was mightily unimpressed with the Barramundi (everyone had been telling us what a great fish it was), went back and packed, ready to head off to our next adventure in Sydney.