Only 10 kilometres from Adelaide’s CBD, and accessible by tram on weekends, is a beach, specifically the seaside suburb of Glenelg. If you like swimming and history then the area is a must visit. In North Glenelg is the Old Gum Tree (now concrete) - the site where South Australia was proclaimed a colony in 1836.
If you make your way down to the Glenelg beach the most prominent landmark is the jetty, probably the most unlucky construction in SA. It was completed in 1859, stretching 381 metres out to sea. At the end of the jetty perched a lighthouse until it caught fire in 1872 and fell into the ocean. The lighthouse was rebuilt with a kiosk also constructed and then destroyed in 1943 by a storm. Nature wasn’t finished with the jetty and in 1948 the entire structure was levelled by, bizarrely, a hurricane. Unperturbed the Glenelg locals set about building a new jetty which was finished in 1969. Not wanting to push their luck this one only measures 215 metres.
Amusement parks haven’t fared too well in the area either. Luna Park Glenelg was built in 1930 but didn’t exactly attract the masses. By 1934 it was broke and the rides, except for the carousel, had been moved to Sydney to be used at Luna Park, Milsons Point. Trying again in 1982 Magic Mountain was opened. Universally loathed it was eventually demolished in 2004. Yet another amusement arcade, the Beachouse, appeared in 2006. It features slides, dodgem cars, ferris wheel plus the carousel from the early Luna Park days.
Surprisingly high rise beachside development hasn’t suffered any misfortunes. While buildings tower the coastline if you venture further in town you will find all manner of dining, drinking and shopping options. Honestly though you can do this anywhere so your best bet is to hit the beach for a swim, or if you prefer something more active try sailing, scuba diving or jet-skiing. If you don’t want to get wet try a Glenelg history walk or cycle and learn while you exercise.