April 2002 issue

Travel News
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Agency Survey
Special Report
Market Report
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City Focus

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At home in Adelaide

Agent viewpoint

"It is safe to go anywhere at any time and easy to find your way around [in Adelaide]. The city is a good study environment [yet it has] all the diversions available [that are] in larger capital cities, a good climate, proximity to excellent beaches and natural attractions. And, of course, there are proportionally a large number of quality education institutions 
offering the most comprehensive range of programmes available in Australia, but with lower tuition fees and a more affordable cost of living than [in] other capital cities."

Juan Tobella Archs, AusVenture, Australia

"Students do not [generally] choose to go to Adelaide because the city is not yet familiar in Japan. We recommend this destination to prospective students. They like it very much because the city is very safe and there are not many Japanese [students there] compared with Sydney. What students do not like is [that] there are not many fun places there. They do not find the city expensive at all, I think that everything is so cheap compared with Sydney. I would recommend Adelaide for all ages because it is a safe city."

Shizue Inagaki, Aquarian House Projects, Japan

"By day, our students like to go to the beaches, go cycling, swimming, or visit museums. By night, they enjoy the theatre, cinema or pub. They like the nice city, beaches, the climate and nature, but [some find the city] boring, with not much to do. In general, our participants are doing an internship so they have no problem meeting locals. We recommend Adelaide for [clients] between 20 and 30 years of age."

Kai Segelcken, Interswop, Germany

Students in Adelaide quickly feel at home in this South Australian city while exploring the many recreational and educational opportunities available. Amy Baker reports.

Adelaide [is] a capital city with a country atmosphere," says Eileen Fisher, Marketing and Promotions Officer at the Adelaide International Language Centre, summing up what many claim is one of Adelaide's key attributes.

Robyn Donnelly, Marketing and Development Officer at Calusa, asked students what they liked about studying in Adelaide. A Swedish student told her, "I like the mix of a small town feeling and still a wide variety of things to do. You have the hills and the beach, the vineyards not far away, the superb market and many restaurants."

All agree that there is plenty to do in Adelaide, which boasts long, sandy beaches, a friendly population and a lively cultural calendar. It also has the advantages of a small city, as Heather McCulloch of Eynesbury Academy of English points out, such as "a clean environment with minimal pollution" and a low cost of living. Donnelly sums up, "Adelaide is an energetic and busy city for all the little activities that go on as well as the big events."

Festivals include the Adelaide Festival of Arts, the Fringe Festival and the Victor Harbour Folk Festival. "Students particularly enjoy the Fringe Festival, with its many free events and activities, the world music festival Womad and the Botanic Gardens Film Festival," says McCulloch. Joanne Omond of the English College of Adelaide adds that students also like the Wine and Food Fair in early October and the Adelaide Royal Show, which is an annual event featuring livestock competitions, horse racing and car racing displays and fireworks.

Year-round attractions for students include the region's famous wine industry. "Both the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale offer free wine tastings, fine gourmet experiences and stunning scenery," says Anita Blessing at Buckingham College of English. Within the city itself, attractions include the Aboriginal museum Tandanya, the Botanic Gardens, the South Australian Museum - with a huge whale skeleton in the front window - and the Central Markets. "Our Central Markets are world class, with high quality international foods available cheaply," says Blessing. She adds, "Our restaurants are less expensive than in other Australian cities."

Because of the warmth of the climate in South Australia, eating al fresco is popular, and students can choose from a wide range of restaurants, many of which specialise in Asian, Middle Eastern, European or African dishes. "Adelaide has more restaurants per head of population than in any other capital city," says McCulloch, adding that the main restaurant strip is on Gouger Street.

At night, the nightlife scene is not as busy or hectic as in larger cities but there is nonetheless plenty to do. Fisher says, "Students probably need to seek local advice about the best [places] to go." With the city centre built on a grid system, it is quite easy for students to find their way around. Popular nightspots are the Soda Room and Planet on Pirie Street and Heaven on West Terrace, while students frequent pubs such as the East End Exchange on Grenfell Street and the Austral on central Rundle Street.

The Rundle Street Mall is a meeting point for many students during the day. "Many students spend time in Rundle Mall catching up with friends, going to a café there or moving on to Chinatown," explains Donnelly. For students who are looking for more active pastimes, there is a centrally located aquatic centre as well as five outdoor public pools in the inner suburbs. "We have recently added a skateboarding and BMX park, and an outdoor volleyball centre to our city centre facilities," adds Blessing. Other students enjoy visiting the stately heritage buildings of Adelaide and walking along tree-lined North Terrace, home to the National Wine Centre.

For those students who want to wind down or enjoy the sunshine, Adelaide's beaches, Glenelg, Brighton and Osborne, are nearby. "Glenelg is another popular location," says Fisher, "where students enjoy the shops and walks along the beach, especially in summer." She believes that Adelaide's beaches and parklands, and the clear air and sky, are a highlight of any student's stay.

Margaret Dyer, Director of Studies at SA Adelaide Language Centre, says that students also appreciate the local travel possibilities from Adelaide, to places such as Kangaroo Island and the Flinders Ranges, which contain three national parks and are home to wildlife such as emus and colourful parrots. Donnelly mentions a further aspect of a language travel trip that students remember. "Many students live with host families, who include them in family barbies, holiday activities and celebrations."

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