By Kasia Ozog
Published: Wednesday, August 25, 2021
Though the Royal Adelaide Show has been cancelled for the second year running (thanks COVID), it doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the showtime experience.
From thrill-seeking activities to foodie adventures and animal experiences, we’ve come up with ways to keep the spirit of the show alive for the young, and the young at heart. And yes, it includes showbags!
Rides and sideshow entertainment
The Show isn’t the Show without head-spinning rides and arcade games that win you giant stuffed animals, right? While the Big Dipper and Gravitron might be off limits this year, here are some fun alternatives that will pretty much guarantee equal thrills.
Wallis Carnival Drive-in Nights
Roll up to the Gepps Cross Mainline Drive-in this September and enjoy games, showbags, animals, face painters, and Show food like Dagwood Dogs and doughnuts.
There’ll also be a movie screening to entertain the whole family. The Wallis Carnival Drive-in Nights are being held on Saturday, 4 September and Sunday, 5 September, as well as Saturday, 11 September and Sunday, 12 September.
Gates open at 5pm with movies commencing at 7pm. Admission is $25 per car, and food and showbags are available for purchase.
An indoor adventure playground featuring multi-level play equipment, rock climbing walls and an enclosed baby world, the brightly-coloured Funtopia will keep children entertained for hours.
As for the grownups, there’s coffee and cheeky alcoholic beverages to enjoy, plus a cafe with an assortment of food and sweet treats. RAA members can receive 20% off Climbing World and Playground World passes.
The Beachouse, Glenelg
Packed with loads of attractions across two levels, including waterslides, arcade games, a carousel and bumper cars and boats, The Beachouse is the perfect one-stop shop for a fun-filled family day.
Just like sideshow antics at the Show, ticketed games offer you the chance to win prizes. Best of all, there’s no entry fee. RAA members receive 15% off all packages, time cards and credits and 10% on birthday party ride packages (conditions apply).
TreeClimb, Adelaide City
Thrill seekers missing the adrenaline rush that comes from show rides, should head to Australia’s first inner-city aerial adventure park, set within the picturesque Adelaide City Parklands. TreeClimb offers 70 obstacles to swing, leap, climb and fly through across eight courses that are suitable for all ages and abilities. RAA members save 15% on all bookings.
BOUNCE Inc., Marleston
Featuring more than 50 interconnected trampolines, obstacle courses, wall climbs and dodgeball courts, BOUNCE Inc. is a massive indoor adventure park that provides an adrenaline rush for all ages.
It’s also your chance to pretend you’re a gymnast for a day, or get a taste of extreme sports without the hard landing. RAA members save up to 18% on single adult passes Monday to Friday and $7.90 on Awesome Foursome tickets during weekends and school holidays (conditions apply).
Games2U, South Australia
Bring the show-time experience to your backyard (or a nearby park or other community area if space is an issue) with a Games2U party package.
The packages offer a range of exciting activities, including mobile laser tag, video and yard games, virtual reality, giant hamster balls, and water tag.
The set-up and pack-up is all taken care of, too. RAA members receive 20% off party packages. With the uncertainty of COVID-19 restrictions, Games2u have a peace of mind policy, where no payments are required until 48 hours before the event and dates can easily be rescheduled, postponed or cancelled, with no penalty fees.
Semaphore Carousel, Semaphore
The Semaphore Carousel has been an iconic seaside attraction since 1938. Featuring 40 wood-carved horses, it is believed to be the largest operating carousel in Australia. Managed by the Rotary Club of Henley Beach, funds raised from ticket sales go to local and international charities.
If the animal pavilion is your usual go-to at the Royal Show, fear not, you don’t have to miss out. There are plenty of opportunities to get your cute and cuddly fix right across South Australia. Here are some of our favourites.
Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary, Mylor
See native Australian animals on guided dawn, day and dusk tours, enjoy wildlife shows and experience behind-the-scenes encounters at Warrawong Wildlife Sanctuary, which happens to be the only place on mainland South Australia to see platypuses.
The award-winning sanctuary was founded in 1969 to protect native animals from predators such as feral cats and foxes. RAA members can purchase tickets from $11.
The Adelaide Zoo is Australia’s second oldest and features native and exotic animals, mammals and reptiles, including world-famous pandas Wang Wang and Fu Ni.
There are also opportunities to feed the giraffes, lions, tigers, penguins (as well as other animals), and be a zookeeper for a day. RAA members save 15% on entry tickets and experiences.
Gorge Wildlife Park, Cudlee Creek
Set on 14 acres in the picturesque Adelaide Hills, Gorge Wildlife Park offers an opportunity to experience wildlife up close. Featuring Australian and exotic animals, birds and reptiles, you can easily spend a few hours walking through the park where you’ll see wombats, dingoes, echidnas and crocodiles, and even have an opportunity to cuddle a koala. RAA members pay from $10 per entry ticket (non-member price $12).
Monarto Safari Park, Monarto
Home to more than 50 exotic and native mammal, bird and reptile species and some 500 free-roaming animals on grounds spanning 1500 hectares, Monarto Safari Park is the largest safari experience outside of Africa.
Explore the park on a bus tour, which stops at several viewing platforms to appreciate the animals in a natural setting. The park can also be explored on foot via several walking tracks. RAA members save 15% on entry tickets and experiences.
The Big Rocking Horse
Home to the world’s largest rocking horse (which you can climb), The Big Rocking Horse also has a walk-through animal park featuring kangaroos, wallabies, alpacas, sheep, goats, peacocks, emus, chickens and ducks.
You can feed these animals too, and when you’re done, walk through the wooden toy factory where you can buy a handmade toy or souvenir (think of it like a showbag).
Let’s be honest, the free tastings and produce available to buy at the Royal Adelaide Show is always a fan favourite.
Walking through the exhibitor pavilion trying a bit of everything and leaving with bags full of delicious goodies is always a must-do at the Show. Here’s your opportunity to try something new to tantalise your tastebuds while supporting local businesses.
Thomas Farms, South Australia
Sourcing only 100% Australian products, Thomas Farms delivers fresh meat, fruit and veg in boxes, which are hand-packed 48-hours before being delivered right to your door. Choose from a pre-made box or build your own. RAA members get free delivery on all online orders.
Scoffed, St Morris
Children aged five and up can be chefs for a day at the Scoffed School of Food and Fun cooking classes. Sweet, savory and even Harry Potter-inspired dishes are on the menu and made completely from scratch. Once the lesson is complete, children get to take their goodies home to share with their family. RAA members save 10% on cooking classes during the school holidays.
You’ll be buzzing after a sweet fix from Hayes Honey, a small family-run business located in Salisbury Heights producing pure, raw honey, honeycomb, lip balms and body butters.
Hayes Honey has won multiple awards at the Royal Adelaide Show, including the youngest member of the Hayes family winning Junior Beekeeper of the Show for two years running (2018 and 2019).
The Show just isn’t the Show without showbags, right? Well, the good news is you don’t have to miss out.
Adelaide’s famous and beloved FruChocs showbags are available both online and in store at The Menz FruChocs Shop located in Glynde, Hahndorf and McLaren Vale. They’re packed with much-loved treats, including all the FruChocs varieties and Violet Crumble. RAA members save 10% in store.
Get goodies delivered direct to your door with Australia’s biggest range of showbags available online. Take your pick from sweet and savoury, novelty, character, YouTubers, sports and more.