Tour Town Hall with a friendly guide

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There’s nothing like a first-hand experience to bring the past to life – and a free guided tour of Adelaide Town Hall is an excellent place to start uncovering the city’s rich history.

The centre of city politics since 1866, this impressive heritage building has played a big role in shaping the physical and cultural landscape of Adelaide.

Kate Earle is part of the City of Adelaide Customer Experience team, and one of five volunteer Adelaide Town Hall tour guides.

“It’s great to learn about Adelaide in school or read a book or visit a website, but standing in front of a map created by the city’s first surveyor-general seeing all the original acres, the names of the owners and how much they paid gives you that surreal feeling of connecting with something from the past,” said Kate.

Adelaide Town Hall pic with Kate Earle

Tour guide Kate Earle (far right) takes her group to the Adelaide Town Hall balcony.

Each guide showcases different elements of interest, but a few stops always make the cut, like the refurbished Queen Adelaide Room and the Auditorium’s spectacular pipe organ.

“The balcony is always popular, whether for the amazing King William Street view or they’re Beatles fans reminiscing about the Fab Four greeting 300,000 people on the street below back in 1964,” said Kate.

“I also enjoy showing a James Baird Shaw painting of the Opening Ball in the Auditorium. I love sharing its brilliant story then taking guests into the room which inspired it. It’s always a special moment, but you’ll have to take a tour to hear the tale!”

One-hour tours run on select Mondays at 10:00 am. Bookings are essential and can be made at

Did you know?

Clocks weren’t installed in the Adelaide Town Hall clock tower until 1935. Before then, there were empty holes where the clocks would eventually go. To avoid embarrassment at the Opening Ball, a cardboard clock face cut-out was fitted. Apparently, no one noticed!

Article by

Skye Murtagh

Skye Murtagh

Skye is Adelaide Living's main driving force. She is passionate about sharing stories from all walks of life. When she's not busy weaving beautiful words together, she's singing a line or two from her favourite song.