Adelaide (population 1.3 million) is the capital of the state of South Australia, located in the southern central part of the country. Historically, it prospered as the center of a region dedicated to mining and agriculture endeavors. The city was laid out by Colonel William Light in 1836, and locals are quite proud of the fact that the community was the only early Australian capital funded by land sales and not built by convicts.
Today, it is an elegant, vibrant city and is home to world-renowned special events and festivals, such as the Adelaide Fringe. The city is also a culinary mecca with the greatest number of restaurants per capita of any Australian city.
The commercial center of Adelaide is a lovely, compact area surrounded by parks. It is well laid out, with museums and attractions easily accessible -- many between the Torrens River and North Terrace. Nearby, Rundle Street boasts the pedestrian Rundle Mall, which is the city's main shopping area. Four blocks south of Rundle Street is Victoria Square, the city's geographic center.
South Australia is the wine industry's powerhouse state, producing most of the nation's wine and boasting some of the oldest individual vines in the world. Within easy reach of Adelaide are some of Australia's most renowned wine regions: The Barossa and Adelaide Hills. The Barossa, home to Jacob's Creek, among others, has been producing wines for more than 150 years and is especially known for Shiraz. Adelaide Hills is renowned for pinot noirs, and another wine region in this area, Eden Valley, is famous for its Rieslings.