Adelaide has a couple of hidden secrets, and the Hallett Cove boardwalk is one of its sparkling blue gems. Stretching for kilometres, one can wander up and down the rambling wooden steps, struggle up the side of steep cliff faces, and stare out at the stunning views stretching out over the sea. The walk extends from Marino to Hallett Cove and is anywhere between five and seven kilometres (one way), depending on your starting and finishing points. The distance is generous as is the volume of steps, which will leave amateur walkers squealing in pain the following day with every leg and gluteal muscle sore.
I first walked it back in 2014 when I was visiting Adelaide for the first time. We only did a short portion but I was charmed by the little rickety steps, gorgeous views and well-placed drinking fountains. When I returned for a further visit to Adelaide, my (at-that-time-future) husband took me to the boardwalk and a little bench overlooking the sea, a mere few hours before I was set to fly home to Scotland. As I looked out – the sun starting to go low in the sky; the crystal sea gently splashing on the rocky shore below; and, a handsome Australian man with his arm around me – I knew one day Adelaide would be my home.
Most people you pass by on the walk look like they mean serious business – dressed in lycra, powerwalking with water bottles in hand – but they always pleasantly smile. I look less serious – bright red in the face, dripping in sweat – and pantingly I might manage a weak smile or a croak of a hello. I try and walk the boardwalk at least once a season, both ways, and always regret it the next day when I wake up cramping and sore. But the views, the challenge, and the opportunity to be outdoors, always tempt me back. Oddly, one of my favourite parts of the walk is a talking toilet – but that could be an entire blog post on its own!
Besides power marching around Hallett Cove Beach, I had never actually been to Hallett Cove. So, when the opportunity came up to visit the popular Hallett Cove Bakery I was eager to head along! I have had a number of requests to visit Hallett Cove Bakery through the <a href="https://theholeygrail.blog/submit-a-location/">submissions page</a>, and felt it was about time. I went to the bakery just after midday to find a good number of the shelves empty, thankfully the donut shelf remained and had a few on offer. Asking for one of the sprinkle topped, larger donuts, to go – I headed to the beach to stare out over the sparkling blue waters and thoughtfully mull over how thankful I am for donuts and Adelaide.