DANNY DE HEK › Entrepreneur Decision Maker Connector Podcaster EducatorThe ‘Festival State’ of South Australia is the ultimate touring holiday destination.

Crammed within its borders is an authentic and unique mix of everything Australian. State highways will take you to fascinating places like Barossa Valley, Victor Harbour, Kangaroo Island, Murray River, Flinders Ranges and Coober Pedy.

The gracious capital city, Adelaide, will always draw you back to its calm dignified embrace. This meticulously planned city is surrounded by green parklands in a superb riverside setting. Elegant stone buildings line wide streets where colourful cafés and restaurants offer a range of exotic cuisines. The heart of the city’s lively café scene is Rundle Street where you will find the avant-garde artists’ quarter and the ideal atmosphere for al fresco dining.

Adelaide is noted for its cultural expression with numerous galleries, museums, heritage buildings, churches, and the famous Adelaide Festival of Arts. The new National Wine Centre is an outstanding showcase for the Australian wine industry and offers the indulgence of fine wine sampling. To complete your experience of the good life, visit Haigh’s Chocolate Factory for a chocoholic taste treat, or join a tour of the Central Market to sample more local delicacies.

Day trips from Adelaide include the famous wine growing regions of Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Clare Valley and Coonawarra. These areas produce half of Australia’s total wine harvest. Many of the fine gourmet foods that are grown in this region find their way to the tables of Adelaide’s famous eateries. Victor Harbour is a favourite holiday haven with varied attractions including the Penguin Centre and the Whale Centre. Whale watching is popular from June to September.

Further afield the scope for outdoor activity increases. Kangaroo Island is renowned for its national parks and plentiful wildlife. It’s a delight to see cuddly koalas, groovy wallabies and playful penguins in their natural habitat, and to hear the boing, boing, boing sound of capering kangaroos.

The Murray River, Australia’s longest navigable waterway is very accessible and you can cruise down the river on a paddle- steamer or houseboat. The vast Flinders Ranges reach far into the Outback and are best viewed by scenic flight over the remarkable rugged rim of Wilpena Pound. Beyond the Flinders is the opal-rich lunar landscape of Coober Pedy, where a labyrinth of subterranean chambers give access to the world’s richest opal mines, and also provide modern underground living for local residents and visitors. You can visit the Painted Desert and Dingo Fence from here, and even help deliver letters on the Oodnadatta Mail Run.

Whether its exploring the outback, sightseeing on the Limestone Coast, enjoying the Arts, or raising a glass of wine, South Australia will surprise you with its treasure trove.