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Adelaide described as a vibrant city in Lonely Planet guide



THE Lonely Planet guide once described Adelaide as painfully short on charisma; a pious, introspective space bogged down in old-school doldrums. Until now.

The latest "Central Australia: Adelaide to Darwin Travel Guid e" publication states that although the city's stuffy, affluent origins did more to inhibit development than promote it, things have changed in Adelaide.

In its most recent review, the acclaimed travel guide says the city has its guard down and its boardshorts up.

The guide's sixth edition portrays a multicultural, flavour-infused CBD which is a Mecca of food, wine, pubs, music, arts and wine-fuelled hedonism.

Port Adelaide receives a particularly positive wrap, described as "an historic enclave slowly developing into SA's version of Fremantle".

"Bogged in boganity for decades, Port Adelaide − 15km northwest of the city − is in the midst of gentrification, morphing its warehouses into art spaces and museums, and its brawl-house pubs into boutique beer emporia. Things are (slowly) on the up!" the guide states.

For Port Adelaide business owner Pemily Douglas it's all good news. The 31-year-old lives locally and opened her Carlton Street salon The Pin Up Lounge 12 months ago.

"I chose the Port because of it's character and beautiful architecture, " she said. "It has a great artistic community focus with local businesses happy to help each other out. There really is a lot starting to take off and I think it's because people are offering something different and unique rather than the same old things you get in every major shopping centre."

The area, which is currently being transformed by Renewal SA is outlined in the guide as "bogged down in boganity for days" but is "in the midst of gentrification, morphing its warehouses into art spaces and museums, and its brawl-house pubs into boutique beer emporia. Things are (slowly) on the up!"

Renewal SA Chief Executive, Fred Hansen is encouraged by the review, saying that Port Adelaide has always been an important part of South Australia.

"Port Adelaide was once the beating heart of South Australia's agricultural and resource based economy as a key staging point for valuable commodities, " Mr Hansen said. "The bustling Port welcomed visitors and immigrants as they arrived to our shores seeking out a new life in South Australia and this deep legacy remains visible today."

He said that Renewal SA is currently working with the City of Port Adelaide Enfield to create a 'living port' that celebrates a maritime past while embracing the future.

The Lonely Planet's, says major projects, water in the River Murray and a new appreciation for wide-open spaces are "keeping locals smiling".

The guide describes the Adelaide Oval Redevelopment as encouraging. "The idea was to reinvigorate the old dame, bringing AFL football to the venue and linking it more easily to the city via a River Torrens footbridge, " it says. "Fortunately, the grassy 'hill' area and magnificent old heritage scoreboard have dodged the wrecking ball, and the excellent Don Bradman Museum will return. Pessimists say it just won't be the same, but many locals think 'different' will also mean 'better'."

Kangaroo Island fishing rights, Port Augusta's history of alcoholism "(the streets are now a dry zone), but the vibe is rarely menacing, " and Mount Gambier's Blue Lake are also mentioned.

Three authors contributed to the sixth edition and seemed particularly enamoured by the Adelaide Hills and McLaren Vale.

Lonely Planet's new guide to 1000 Ultimate Adventures lists swimming with the tuna and shark diving in Port Lincoln, Baird Bay Ocean EcoExperience, the Heysen Trail, opal foraging and the bike trails in the Clare and Barossa Valleys as musts in South Australia.



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