Australia’s national economy, politics, infrastructure and customs vary from those in the UK … but it’s also worth remembering that it’s a country with a population less than half that of Britain’s spread over a land mass around 30 times as big. That has led to notable differences between Australia’s states, territories and cities, many of which have their own distinct character.
Adelaide – “Athens of the South”
Adelaide is the capital of the state of South Australia and has been described (admittedly in rather tongue-in-cheek manner by none other than Dame Edna Everage) as “the Athens of the South”. You might hear some Australians good-naturedly knocking Adelaide as some sort of colonial relic – and it’s certainly true that it hasn’t quite reinvented itself as a buzzing metropolitan hotspot in the way that Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane have.
However, the reality is that 21st-century Adelaide often combines the best of both worlds. In some ways it is a less exuberant sibling than some of Australia’s pacier cities, and for many it has the feel of a “big country town”. On the other hand, as befits a state capital and the fifth most populous city in the country, it has a wealth of amenities and entertainment outlets, as well as having maintained enviable financial stability and a strong local economy in the years since the global financial crisis.
Housing in Adelaide
Adelaide’s housing market presents an interesting contrast to Australia’s other big cities, with markedly lower house prices (and generally lower costs of living) than some other major metropolitan areas. In 2015 Adelaide house prices increased over four consecutive quarters for the first time since 2010, and housing industry analysts predict that prices are likely to continue rising due to increased demand throughout 2017.
The median house price in Adelaide in late 2015 was just under $452,000 – which equates to around £260,000. However, this compares with the average property in Sydney which hit a median price of over $1.1 million (around £690,000) last year, while Melbourne’s median house price for the same period was just over $843,000 (around £484,000). The city also has a fairly high-demand rental market. Like any big city, properties in Adelaide can vary significantly from one neighbourhood to the next, so it makes sense to thoroughly research the area and its amenities before committing yourself.
Life in Adelaide
Quality of life in Adelaide is high – world-class, in fact. The Property Council of Australia has ranked it as the “most liveable city” in the nation in 2011, 2012 and 2013, while in 2016 it was positioned as the fifth most liveable city in the world by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
Adelaide has all the amenities and entertainment you would expect of a city of its size. Pleasant suburban housing and quality schools combine with a warm climate and plenty of green spaces to provide an enviable living experience. You’ll find a great range of friendly pubs and restaurants and, while it may lack the heady buzz of Sydney’s nightlife, there’s more going on than some would have you believe. The city is also well known for hosting a variety of international festivals and cultural events.
Arranging your move
If you’re planning to move to Adelaide, check out our main article on moving to Australia for more hints and tips on things to consider, including getting a visa, buying a property and setting up a bank account. To learn more about international removal costs, you can also use our online quote tool to compare instant quotes from reputable international removals companies.
Last reviewed March 2017.