Christmas traditions for South Australians

Christmas traditions for South Australians

Now that I'm older and have a young family, Christmas has taken on a whole new meaning for me. While I may have had some Scrooge tendencies in the past, it's hard not to get excited by the magic of Christmas when you see it through young eyes. One thing that's important to me is creating consistent and happy core memories for my boys. This includes creating Christmas traditions that are unique to our South Australian home.

I've always found it amusing that we exchange Christmas cards with snowmen and sing carols about white Christmases, when in reality, a summer Christmas is actually quite glorious. Having spent half a dozen Christmases overseas, I can say with certainty that one of the biggest differences I've noticed is that in Adelaide, Christmas represents the start of summer and you don’t feel an anticlimax on Boxing Day when it’s all over. 

Here is my list of South Australian Christmas activities I do with my family:


Christmas Pageant

You simply can't skip the Christmas Pageant if you want to get into the festive spirit. Growing up, this event was the signal that it was appropriate to now put up the family Christmas tree and I have upheld this tradition. The pageant is pure magic - the floats, the costumes, the waving, how can you not smile? Even as I've grown older, I still feel a twinge of jealousy for whoever gets to ride on Nipper or Nimble that year. It seems like it was every young Adelaide girl's dream to be selected to ride on one of those!


Christmas lights

Now you can venture down to Lobethal Lights which is brilliant in its own right, but you can also find light displays that are a little closer to home. These can be found on the Christmas Lights Adelaide & Surrounds Facebook group. One thing that I do with the kids is light up our own home. With an accumulation of Bunnings and Aldi Christmas light displays from over the years, we decorate our house to bring some of that Lobethal magic to our home. It “lights” me up to see the joy that brings to people when they stroll or drive past.



As a child I knew Christmas was on its way when I started to see cherries in the supermarket. It was a marker of excitement for me, and now I want to pass that tradition on to my kids.  Every December we take them up to the Adelaide Hills to go cherry picking. There’s an app called Fresh Cherries you can download which tells you which South Australian farms are open and what kind of cherries are available to pick. Picking fresh cherries off the tree is such a wholesome family activity and our day is topped off with a pub lunch...usually at the Uraidla Hotel. Win-win!

 Cherry picking in the Adelaide Hills

Christmas cooking and baking

Christmas baking has been a long-standing tradition in our family. We make rum balls, Florentines, and anything else that's filled with condensed milk, butter and desiccated coconut. These treats have distinctive flavours and smells that are synonymous with Christmas for me. One of my favourite pre-Christmas activities is heading to the Adelaide Central Markets to buy goodies for our Christmas feast. It's the one time of year when I don't mind splurging on creating the best cheese platter around.


Christmas in Adelaide is truly special. With perfect weather, an abundance of fresh local foods, and plenty of family-friendly activities, it's a season to cherish. Cheers to a South Australian Christmas filled with hot summer nights, laughter and traditions!

Share a laugh and some nostalgia with your friends and family this Christmas by purchasing your Christmas cards from our special SA-inspired Christmas card range. Click here to shop now

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