Top 10 Illuminate Adelaide Events

SA Tourism travel blog

Winter in the city has never looked better. Illuminate Adelaide is already dazzling audiences ahead of its official debut – and there’s still time to book your tickets.

Art, music, light and technology star at this new major event. It takes place from 16 July to 1 August, using venues that range from CBD laneways to the Adelaide Botanic Garden and an enormous purpose-built pavilion.

South Australia’s regions are also alight, with must-see events in Tumby Bay (13-21 August) and Renmark (17 September-9 October). Ready to be illuminated? Here are 10 program highlights.

1. Van Gogh Alive – The Experience

Van Gogh Alive, Illuminate Adelaide

1 July-1 August

The life and legacy of Vincent Van Gogh come leaping off the canvas in this multi-sensory tribute within The Grand Pavilion – a 20,000 square foot gallery on O’Connell Street in North Adelaide. Van Gogh Alive – The Experience is showing from 1 July – 1 August.

2. Light Creatures

Light Creatures, Illuminate Adelaide

8 July-1 August

Step inside the Adelaide Zoo after dark and enter a whole new world. Light Creatures blends nature and imagination for a wild night like no other.

3. Adelaide Festival of Ideas

Adelaide Festival of Ideas, Illuminate Adelaide

15 July-18 July

Returning in 2021 to a world shaped by extraordinary upheaval – and in partnership with the University of Adelaide – the Adelaide Festival of Ideas is back to illuminate the challenges and opportunities of our time.

4. Light Cycles

Light Cycles, Illuminate Adelaide

15 July-1 August

Montreal’s Moment Factory has created mesmerising stage shows for artists like Billie Eilish, Jay-Z and Madonna – now the team is hitting Adelaide to turn one of our most beloved green spaces into a wondrous forest. Light Cycles will blend light, technology and feeling to reinvent the Adelaide Botanic Garden.

5. City Lights

City Lights, Illuminate Adelaide

16 July-1 August

Explore a free nocturnal playground of projections, imagination and light. City Lights runs over 17 nights, offering trails across Adelaide’s north, east and west.

6. Kinara

Kinara, Illuminate Adelaide

24 July

This curated evening of music, culture, kin and country represents a collaboration between Illuminate Adelaide, TANDANYA National Aboriginal Cultural Institute and Music SA. KINARA will be held on the night of July’s full moon.

7. The Avalanches: Since I Left You, Live

The Avalanches, Illuminate Adelaide

30 July

Twenty-one years after launching the globally lauded Since I Left You, The Avalanches return to perform their seminal album alongside the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra. Award-winning duo Electric Fields will open the night.


MAAD, Illuminate Adelaide

31 July

Illuminate Adelaide is saving the biggest party for last. MAAD will take over venues, galleries and laneways in the northwest corner of the city, with The Avalanches to set to deliver an unforgettable closing DJ set.

9. Illuminate Adelaide in Tumby Bay: Big Picture Series x Colour Tumby

13-21 August

Discover a street art walking tour reimagined for the digital age – plus augmented reality sculptures, a new installation from Vans the Omega and the illumination of street art murals in collaboration with Colour Tumby – as Illuminate Adelaide brings its magic to the Eyre Peninsula.

10. Illuminate Adelaide in Renmark: In Depth

17 September-9 October

This large-scale multimedia event responds to the Murray River, its history and the community of Renmark. In Depth will see projection, sound and lighting transform the river and banks after dark as the local habitat is transformed to celebrate one of the waterway’s oldest residents.

The show continues in Adelaide

Continue lighting up your winter events calendar with the full program of Illuminate Adelaide events. From after-dark parties to laneways and city streets transforming into nocturnal playgrounds with beams of light and projections.

/Courtesy of SA Tourism. This material from the originating organization/author(s) may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. The views and opinions expressed are those of the author(s).