What You Can Expect from Adelaide’s Chinatown

Foodies will go crazy for the delicious flavours on offer at Chinatown in Adelaide City. Set amongst the vibrant streets of the city’s Central Business District, the area is well-known for its world-famous international cuisine covering all parts of the globe. Here, you can browse stalls piled high with gourmet foods, Oriental treats, and street food stalls. In addition, there are plenty of five-star restaurants, cafes, and food courts to enjoy while visiting Chinatown.

To get to Chinatown, head down Gouger Street or Grote Street and you’ll find yourself in the heart of the area, with its pagoda decorations and cosy red lamps. If you’re looking for something a little different, take a turn down one of the lanes that cut off from the main strips and discover some of the smaller, more boutique-style eateries.

Chinatown, Adelaide

The History of Adelaide’s Chinatown

Adelaide’s Chinatown started life in 1847, when the first few Chinese laborers arrived in the city from Singapore to work as indentured shepherds.

Many of the Chinese people disembarked ships docked in Southern Australia before they travelled inland to the goldfields, but it wasn’t until the 1970s and 1980s that Adelaide’s Chinatown really began to blossom after an influx of Asian migrants hit the city.

They sold produce at the Adelaide Central Market and then branched out into Asian food shops, cafes and restaurants, which soon became known as Chinatown. Today, the pagoda roofs, traditional red lanterns, and Oriental restaurants can be found on and around Moonta Street, the heart of Chinatown. At each end of the road, Paifang, traditional Chinese-style archways, stand guarded by Chinese lion statues which were gifted to the area by Adelaide’s City Council and the Chinese Government.

What You’ll Find in Chinatown

  • Restaurants

    Here, you can tuck into dishes from China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, and India. Here are just a few of the top-rated restaurants around!

    • T-Chow Chinese RestaurantOne of Chinatown’s most popular destinations, T-Chow is one restaurant that is always full and with a fantastic atmosphere comes tasty food! Not only does this eatery serve up and an extensive list of incredible dishes (the shallot pancakes are a must!) but it’s known for its cheap corkage, making T-Chow the perfect dining destination on the weekend! Located in the heart of Chinatown, the restaurant also offer a daily Yum Cha lunch service and is a must-try for anyone wanting to try authentic Chinese cuisine.
    • Wah HingKnown for its sleek and sophisticated setting, Wah Hing has both a spectacular atmosphere and even better food. Renowned for its delicious stir fry’s and Asian greens. Perfect for a casual date, work lunch, or family dinner.
    • ConcubinePopular with both the locals and the critics, Concubine has won many of the hearts and awards of Adelaide. Serving delightful authentic Chinese dishes to go with their beautifully decorated interior. This restaurant is famous for being the city’s best Chinese restaurant around, even winning the AGFG Reader’s Choice Award for Best Chinese Restaurant in 2018.
    • East Taste CaféIf you’re looking for a quick bite, East Taste Café is for you! With the food coming out before you can even hang your jacket up. Despite the speed, this restaurant has a great reputation. With a mix of crowd-pleasing cuisines guaranteed to satisfied even the fussiest eater.
    • Ryo’s NoodlesSimple but spectacular; these are the two words that best describe Ryo’s Noodles. With small quarters, tiny tables you share with other visitors, and no bookings allowed. Despite this, the restaurant has a heard of guests every day, with lines forming on the street to get in. This is all due to the renowned Japanese noodles, as Ryo’s noodles are the best place that serves real Tokyo style ramen. The focus on food and not service makes this restaurant unique, transporting you right to Japan without ever having to leave Adelaide.
    • Thanh Thanh Vietnamese RestaurantAustralians are crazy about Asian dishes, with their favourite being the large steaming dishes of Pho. With this Vietnamese restaurant serving some of the best pho, Adelaide has to offer. It’s quick and easy, perfect for a quick lunch spot to refuel on your day of sightseeing.
  • Fresh Food Produce

    The area is well worth a wander, particularly if you’re a foodie’s heart. With stalls selling everything from fresh Asian fruit and vegetables to Oriental snacks and treats. Due to most Australian supermarkets not stocking this range of products. Chinatown can help the locals create an even more authentic Asian dish at home, or even help the local restaurants in the region.

  • An Assortment of Goodies

    Aside from food, there are several Asian health providers, as well as studios for a number of cultural dance and performance groups, and even an education facility. The streets are packed full of craft sellers, too, flogging everything from high-end jewellery to handmade souvenirs and crafts in designated gift shops.

  • Chinatown Plaza

    The plaza is where all Chinatown’s goodies come together. With delicious dining experiences, stunning retail shops, and a number of services all within a modern style plaza with a backdrop of artistic graffiti. Bringing both locals and tourists together, the plaza has everything you need, almost like a mini Asian shopping centre right smack bang in the middle of Adelaide.

This vibrant part of Adelaide brings another part of the world to the city, offering tasty morsels of food and mesmerizing cultural experience.

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