Adelaide, the heart of South Australia, has so much happening through the festive season. From lights, to decorations, markets and more, there’s something for everyone. The season of magic and joy in celebrating Christmas in Adelaide has always been synonymous with community celebrations. There’s plenty of opportunity to get together and celebrate.
Disclaimer: We are in the process of updating this article! All entries with 2023 listed beside them have been updated for this year. Those with TBC are to be confirm for this year.
We have put together a list of some of the best family friendly Christmas events in Adelaide.
RELATED: If you are planning an Adelaide Christmas party and hunting for a great venue, we know that too! And if you want someone to help you style your party, check out these Adelaide party planners!
- Santa's Aussie Christmas at Adelaide Convention Centre 2023
- Rundle Mall’s Christmas Window Display
- National Pharmacies Christmas Pageant 2023
- Giant Christmas Tree 2023
- Santa’s Wonderland 2023
- The Lights of Lobethal Festival 2023
- Salisbury Community Christmas Parade 2023
- Norwood Christmas Pageant 2023
- Playford Community Christmas Pageant 2023
- Christmas Carols
- Christmas markets in Adelaide
- Photos with Santa
- Christmas lights bus tour (sold out)
- Christmas Eve box ideas
- Christmas charity options in Adelaide
- Christmas in Adelaide
Santa’s Aussie Christmas at Adelaide Convention Centre 2023
Round up your colleagues, social club and mates for Adelaide’s most anticipated holiday celebration, Santa’s – Aussie Christmas at the Adelaide Convention Centre.
With festivities running over your choice of two nights (either Friday, 15 December or Saturday, 16 December), Santa’s – Aussie Christmas promises an unforgettable evening of festive cheer, laughs and banter, along with an all-inclusive three-course dinner and drinks package. Add live entertainment by The Incredibles and Aerial Artists Australia, and the scene is set for a magical evening of unforgettable festive fun.
It’s the perfect solution for your work Chrissie party, just book your tables and leave the rest to the Adelaide Convention Centre team. Fair dinkum, it’s that easy!
Rundle Mall’s Christmas Window Display
Explore the joy of the iconic Rundle Mall Christmas Windows as they form a festive path of wonderment down the length of Rundle Mall, featuring both classic and modern takes on what Christmas means to South Australians.
Flanked by a forest of Christmas trees and fairy lights, each window tells an enchanting Christmas story, including the traditional North Pole window which shows Santa Claus setting off into the starry night with his reindeer to deliver Christmas joy to those far and wide. Another classic window beloved throughout the years is the Music window, showcasing the magic of Christmas carols in a golden burst of instruments and music notes.
The popular National Pharmacies Christmas Pageant window returns to mark 90 years of the Pageant and its hero, Nimble, along with a new twist on the popular florals window, this year showcasing an installation created with Aboriginal artists and native blooms.
Where: Rundle Mall
When: to be confirmed
National Pharmacies Christmas Pageant 2023
At 9:30am on Saturday 4 November, the whistle will blow to signal the beginning of the 2023 National Pharmacies Christmas Pageant!
Since 1933, the National Pharmacies Christmas Pageant has been the traditional start to the Christmas season in South Australia. Thousands of people, young and old, line the city streets to welcome Father Christmas to Adelaide. Traditionally, the National Pharmacies Christmas Pageant is held on the morning of the second Saturday in November where floats, colourful clowns, bands, dancers and other magical characters make their way around the City of Adelaide.
Where: South Terrace to Adelaide Town Hall
When: Saturday 4 November. From 9.30am
Giant Christmas Tree 2023
Adelaide’s Christmas Festival will officially begin with the annual Christmas tree lighting, the first in a series of events as part of Festive Weekends. Join in at Victoria Square / Tarntanyangga and enjoy a wide range of festive performances from a pipe band, youth choir, DJ, and the dynamic Chloe Castledine and her band, The Cast, playing all your favourite Christmas songs. The lights on the Christmas tree will be turned on at approximately 8:30 pm.
Where: Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga, King William Rd, Adelaide
When: Saturday 18 November – 6pm – 9pm, lighting of the tree at 8.45pm
Find out more information about the Giant Christmas Tree here.
Santa’s Wonderland 2023
Santa’s Wonderland comes alive at the Adelaide Showground with an extravagant range of amazing Amusement rides, spectacular Christmas stage shows, magnificent Ice-skating rink and Tobogganing slides and the Christmas Activity trail. Get those pointy Christmas shoes tapping with merry excitement! Laugh, sing, dance and selfie your way through this truly magical walk through wonderland with your family and friends by securing your spot now!
Where: Adelaide Showground
When: Friday 1 – Sunday 24 December
The Lights of Lobethal Festival 2023
This Christmas festival has been lighting up the Lobethal Valley in the Adelaide Hills (South Australia) for over sixty years… created by the community of Lobethal. In the true spirit of Christmas, a tradition that has continued for over 60 years began and has now evolved into the largest Community Christmas Light Display in the Southern Hemisphere. We know you will love this one. There is also pageants, markets, a Christmas maze and a Living Nativity.
When: Saturday 9 – Saturday 23 December
Salisbury Community Christmas Parade 2023
This year marks the 31st Salisbury Community Christmas Parade on Saturday 2nd December. Activities and stalls between 9am – 2pm and the parade will be at 10am – 11.30am. There will also be:
- Christmas Carols
- Market Stalls
- Kid’s Activities
- Bouncy Castles
- Santa 12 – 2pm
- Floats, floats and more floats
- Competitions … and more
Where: Salisbury City Centre
When: Saturday 2 December
Norwood Christmas Pageant 2023
The Norwood Christmas Pageant is back and set to ignite the Christmas spirit on The Parade, Norwood with colourful floats, music and entertainment including live bands, clowns, dancers, fairies and more. Crowds are expected to line the streets from first thing in the morning and kids are encouraged to bring their chalk and decorate the street with Christmas drawings.
The Pageant will start at Woods Street, Norwood and travel east along The Parade to Queen Street.
When: Saturday 18 November, 10:00am — 11:00am
Where: Woods Street
Playford Community Christmas Pageant 2023
Join in for a day of fun and community spirit at the Playford Community Christmas Pageant. You will see the jolly fellow in a red suit make his entrance into Playford preceded by many of the local community groups and people of Playford. Free entry. Gates open 8-8:30am There will be markets with tons of local stalls. the pageant starts at 9am. There will be food, activities, bouncy castles, entertainment by local talents and a great, fun day for the whole family.
When: Saturday 25 November
Where: Central District Football Club
Find out more about Playford Community Christmas Pageant here.
Adelaide loves a good Christmas carols event. Our suburbs are filled with these local Adelaide Christmas carol events that showcase the best of the local carolers. These events support the local community groups and are well worth a visit. The city centre also has many annual carols events. Our favourite Christmas carol events across Adelaide include:
Carols by Candleight 2023
SeaLink Carols by Candlelight is returning to Elder Park on Saturday 9th December thanks to the generous support of SeaLink and the Government of South Australia. Get the family and your friends together for an uplifting day of free entertainment. Keep an eye on the website for updates on artist announcements, giveaways, updates and more.
When: Saturday 9 December
Where: Elder Park
Gawler Christmas Carols 2023
Head along to Pioneer Park and enjoy the festivities. 5pm start, Santa arrives at 6pm, with entertainment for the whole family. Food available. Alcohol and smoke free event. Bring your own chairs / picnic blankets and don’t forget the Christmas earrings! Wear your Santa Hat and tinsel too!
When: Saturday 9 December – 5 – 9.30pm
Where: Pioneer Park
You can find out more about Gawler Christmas Carols here.
Salisbury Community Christmas Carols & Fireworks 2023
Salisbury Community Christmas Carols are supported by Special Guest Santa and outstanding local South Australian talent. Head along and enjoy this incredible FREE community event supported by local businesses, schools, the City of Salisbury Council and organised by the local Lions Club of Salisbury. This event returns to attract and stun a Salisbury wide crowd. This event will feature free children’s entertainment, delicious food available and much more!
It’s a night for the whole family!
When: Saturday 9 December from 5pm
Where: Carisbrooke Park, Salisbury
Christmas markets in Adelaide
Take the stress out of Christmas with friends and family and enjoy a relaxing stroll through a menagerie of unique gifts, taste the delectable Yuletide treats. You will find the most unique gifts for even the fussiest of relatives and friends. This year more than ever, it is so important to support local! We have put together a huge list of the best Christmas markets in Adelaide. In the meantime here are a few of our favourites:
Bowerbird Design Market 2023
Fittingly named after the Aussie bird that is attracted to all things pretty and shiny, this market is full of darling handmade products for those in your life who love beautifully crafted products. Meet the makers and select unique gifts to put under those trees.
Where: Adelaide Showground
Date: Friday 17 – Sunday 19 November
Time: Friday 4 – 9pm, Saturday & Sunday 10am – 5pm
Campbelltown Moonlight Markets 2023
This family friendly, outdoor market features 90 artisan craft and fashion stalls, food and wine, music and roving entertainment, free craft activities and a large playground for the children. Held in the picturesque Thorndon Park, Paradise. Go along to discover hidden treasures, try new food and wine experiences, sit back and enjoy the night!
Where: Thorndon Park
Date: Friday 1st December
Time: 5:00pm – 9:00pm
Ebenezer Night Market 2023
With the aid of outdoor lighting, casual dining areas and smooth tunes, the Ebenezer Night Markets illuminate the natural beauty of the street and provide an opportunity for some of Adelaide’s most creative artisans and foodies to create an outdoor shopping experience to remember.
Featuring fashion, jewellery, delicious food, beverages from the Market Bar and all sorts of unique artistic creations! Listen to the live DJ play some groovy tunes whilst enjoying the amazing East End atmosphere.
Where: Ebenezer Place
Date: Saturday 16 December
Time: 5:30 – 10pm
Photos with Santa
The tradition of getting a photo with Santa is a great way to capture how much the kids have grown each year! It is also a reminder of the year that was. This year the photos will be socially distanced from Santa but it won’t stop you from getting the perfect image with the man in the red suit.
Meeting Santa for most kids is exciting but if your child has a sensory process disorder like autism, it can be a challenging experience. Some shopping centres are now offering ‘Sensory Santa’. They create a calm and sensory-friendly photo session with dim lights and no music or loud noises.
Christmas lights bus tour (sold out)
North East Community House Inc. is running a mini bus on 19 December, 2023 to see the Christmas lights of Lobethal. Get in quick as this trip is only $30!
Christmas Eve box ideas
We love the fairly new tradition of giving kids a Christmas Eve Box on the 24th of December to get them right into the spirit of Xmas. Some families I know use this additional gift as a way to get the kids to go to bed without a fuss on Christmas Eve. Whatever your reason for creating a Christmas Eve box, we’ve put together a few ideas for your kids (and one for the mummas too!) You can find all the details including pricing and where to buy their contents here.
Christmas charity options in Adelaide
Becoming involved in Christmas charity work isn’t just the moral thing to do – it’s a way to teach our own children the values of empathy, respect and kindness. For a Christmas family activity with a difference think about donating to some of these great Christmas charity initiatives or volunteering your time here.
Christmas in Adelaide
Celebrate the festive season in Adelaide and enjoy Christmas carols, meet Santa, shop at pop up markets and enjoy a Christmas lunch at the city’s great restaurants. If you are planning a Christmas party in Adelaide and need a venue, we’ve got you covered for that too! And if you are looking for a real Christmas tree in Adelaide, we know that too!
You’ll feel the Christmas spirit around Adelaide for the whole month of December with lights, decorations and Christmas trees decorating the city. Get out there and enjoy!
Join our Facebook group to jumpstart your Christmas planning all year long!
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