West End: things to do in Adelaide’s hippest neighbourhood

The once gritty West End of Adelaide has emerged as a lively hub of laneway bars, dining and galleries.

Bar tender pouring cocktail into flaming glass at Malt and Juniper, Adelaide.
  • Jo Mckay
  • February 2019
  • Updated October 2020

If you find yourself in the South Australian capital, add the West End to your list of places to visit. You can while away hours wandering the area’s cool gallery spaces and quirky shops before finishing up with dinner and a drink – if you’re looking for a cocktail, the options are endless in this part of town.


This science and tech museum opens in new window may be geared towards young adults but it makes for a fun and interactive pit stop that anyone can enjoy. The exhibitions change every six months and the focus is usually on provoking new ideas in the realms of art and science.

Jam Factory and other creative spaces

Parts of the West End are now ground-zero for Adelaide’s creative community. There’s the well-established Jam Factory opens in new window, a gallery-showroom hybrid showcasing ceramics, jewellery and more. Within a block, you’ll also find Ace Open opens in new window, the Kerry Packer Civic Gallery opens in new window, the Samstag Museum of Art opens in new window and SASA Gallery opens in new window, all of which host contemporary exhibitions.

Imprints Booksellers

Literary buffs will adore this temple of all things bookish opens in new window. Bestsellers, new releases and a range of indie tomes line the shelves and the whole place smells of freshly printed pages. It’s arguably Adelaide’s best independent bookstore.

The Noble Gentleman

This slick wine bar opens in new window in Topham Mall features a different South Australian winery each month – but the list is chock-full of interstate and international drops, too. The service is warm and there’s a range of share plates and platters perfect for pairing with a bottle of vino.

Twenty fifty-two

Clothes, skateboards, shoes and accessories – they have it all at this concept store opens in new window hidden in an unassuming basement on Hindley Street. The boutique stocks its own brand, as well homegrown and international labels. They also occasionally host an online radio station, 2052, from the shop.

Malt and Juniper

It’s hard to choose between the cool bars that line Peel Street – the strip demands a cocktail crawl – but if any one bar had to be at the top of your list, make it Malt and Juniper opens in new window. By day, this joint serves up delicious pastries and strong coffees. When the sun goes down, it morphs into one of the city’s hippest gin and whisky dens.


If dancing on the tabletops after devouring a few pizzas sounds like fun, then Sunny’s opens in new window is for you. If not, come a little earlier in the evening because the pizzas are sensational, even without the dancing.

Find out more about Adelaide opens in new window

See cheap flights to Adelaide opens in new window