By James Baker and Pixie Stardust

It’s amazing how much you can learn from visiting libraries and other GLAMR institutions, especially when given a tour by the staff of those institutions – from decisions about the layout of the space to how they organise workflow. For new librarians this is especially useful because it can sometimes be difficult to understand how the way your workplace deviates from the practices of others and if you don’t realise it does, you can’t begin to work out why.

To make the most of the amazing symposium venue in the heart of Adelaide, we are offering four tours scheduled for the first day of the symposium, Friday, July 5th, all guided by our friendly committee members. Each of these tours is a half day and offers the opportunity to learn about a variety of local GLAMR institutions.

Our most ‘realia’ focused tour is of the Museums of Port Adelaide,  and although this tour is outside the Adelaide CBD, it will be finished with time to return for the afternoon sessions.

The South Australian Aviation Museum

Why should you go on the Port Adelaide tour? A return train ride (on possibly the least crowded train you have ever been on if you are from the Eastern states) to this funky industrial city is included! Visit 3 diverse museums – trains, planes and ships (and other oceany stuff) – and then if you stick around, you can explore the amazing street art, excellent coffee and a diverse array of food.

You may choose to catch the train back to Adelaide after the tour, in which case register for an afternoon tour in the City too! However, if you’ve got the afternoon free after your tour of Port Adelaide museums,  here are some ideas of places to eat, where to get a great coffee and other things to see and do.


  • Cherry Darlings – a vegan bakery in the Cult and Harper art space. Well-known for their doughnuts, shakes and pies.
  • Folklore – this cafe has an amazing location over the river, a great spot for a coffee while you to try and spot a dolphin.
  • Port Admiral Hotel – Port Adelaide’s oldest building, established in 1849, has a decidedly new fit out and menu inside, run by some of Adelaide’s most popular hospitality people. Boutique bottle shop attached.
  • Miss Viet – great food here, including vegan options (including pho!)
  • Low and Slow BBQ – Southern US style cooked meats and comfort food, evenings only.
  • Mayfair bakery – excellent pastries and doughnuts here, including a vegan kransky, pasty and doughnut.


  • Dutch Coffee Lab – excellent coffee and Dutch treats including toasties & apple pies from this quaint little coffee shop, run by Amsterdam export Tom and his team. Lekker!
  • Drummer Boy – great coffee and brunch options at this little place.


  • Wonderwalls – The port has hosted this street art festival 3 times (2015, 2017, 2019) and you can wander around and see some amazing and massive art. A map is available here.


The Loop Path takes you along the waterfront along both sides of river and along the New Port development. See if you can spot a dolphin – the Port River is home to the only city dolphins in the world.

The alternative tour for the morning will be staying in Adelaide’s CBD and investigating Art, Politics and Education at the Art Gallery of South Australia Research Library, the South Australian Parliament Research Library, and The UniSA City West Campus Library in the Jeffrey Smart building.

Research Library at the Art Gallery of South Australia

Although these three libraries are focused on research, they are looking into widely different areas and these differences show in the running of the libraries, their users, and the resources they make available in their collections.

In case mornings aren’t really your thing, there are also two fantastic afternoon tours, the first of which is exploring three of the mainstays of the GLAMR field, a museum, library, and art gallery, in the Museum, State and Art tour.

MOD, the Museum of Discovery

Starting at the Migration Museum, the first of its type in the world, we’ll move on to the State Library of South Australia and finish at MOD, the Museum of Discovery – all ready for the networking event to be held there in the evening.  This tour has the greatest variety in the institutions involved and seeing the similarities and differences between them will likely be of use no matter where your career takes you.

The fourth tour, Public, Academic and Museum will visit two libraries and a museum, the first library, the City Library, serves the public of Adelaide and the other, the Barr Smith Library, serves staff and students at the University of Adelaide. In between these libraries, we’ll be visiting a museum that balances the needs of students and the general public at the Centre of Democracy.

Centre of Democracy, photo by Andre Castellucci

Seeing the different ways the public and academic libraries achieve their aims and contrasting it with a museum is a great way to find out more about the different aspects of the profession.

All of the tours are available to any NLS9 attendee for just $30 and promise interesting insight for any student or new graduate interested in coming along. They’ll all be interesting no matter what sort of institution you’re looking at working for, or the type of work you’re interested in doing there.

Join us on these incredible tours and learn more about the role, the history, and the interesting little details that make these institutions bastions of the GLAMR landscape in South Australia.

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