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AFL football at Adelaide Oval

The story of adelaide oval - past and present

Adelaide Oval is known for its heritage scoreboard and a multi-million dollar transformation into a modern stadium.

Humble beginnings

Born 145 years ago in 1871, the Adelaide Oval was born after the formation of the South Australian Cricket Association. In 1884, it played host to its first Test cricket match, between Australia and England (unfortunately, we lost!)


Not long after, the first Australian Rules football match was played between Adelaide and St Kilda in an inter-colonial club match. Since then, an impressive 16 sports have been played at the Oval including baseball, cycling, gridiron, hockey, lacrosse, tennis and archery.


But Adelaide Oval isn’t all about sports. Throughout its life, it’s hosted major concerts from artists such as Madonna, Michael Jackson, Elton John and Paul McCartney. It was the first venue in the Southern Hemisphere that David Bowie performed at.


Much loved at the Oval are the leafy Moreton Bay fig trees, some of which were planted as far back as the 1890s. And the heritage-listed wooden scoreboard. Built in an Edwardian style, the scoreboard was first used in 1911 and the clock was added a year later. Today, even after a modernisation of the stadium, the scoreboard stands proud at the northern end of the ground.


2KW Bar and Restaurant, Adelaide

Adelaide Oval in the distance, as seen from nearby rooftop bar 2KW.


The modern makeover

In 2014, a huge project to upgrade the Adelaide Oval was completed. The Oval had always been a South Australian icon, but its upgrade transformed it into one of the most advanced, state-of-the-art outdoor venues in Australia. The revamped Adelaide Oval has a seating capacity of 53,500, with over 2100 square metres of grass, and almost 900 square metres of viewing platforms. 


To ensure sports fans don't miss any of the on-field action, three giant replay screens and an exceptional quality audio system was added to the oval, along with 23 purpose-built function rooms, corporate suites, BBQ terraces, the Audi Stadium Club and of course, the exceptional Hill of Grace Restaurant. Seeking a bit more excitement? Take on the icon with the Commonwealth Bank RoofClimb Adelaide Oval and see the stadium from an entirely different perspective.


Take a tour

If you want to learn more about the Adelaide Oval, you can join a behind-the-scenes tour or explore their fantastic museum.


Embark on a journey into the inner sanctum of the Adelaide Oval, led by expert volunteer guides. Go behind closed doors as you are told captivating stories, shown hidden secrets and relive celebrated moments. Stand inside the historic century-old scoreboard and enjoy a birds-eye view of the impressive Adelaide city landscape. 


Guided walking tours of the oval are approximately 90 minutes in length and cover up to two and a half kilometres in distance. Adelaide Oval stadium tours operate Monday to Saturday on non-event days. 

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