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Migration Museum

Discover the cultures that have helped shape the state and hear the stories of its people at the first Australian museum of its kind.

South Australia has seen a number of waves of migration since European settlement in the 1800s. At the Migration Museum you’ll learn about these migration movements and the cultures that helped to build the state.

The museum has several displays covering a range of topics, including the early days of British settlement in South Australia and the impact of mass migration schemes. Objects and textiles are divided into more than 20 collections, including costumes, fans, school badges, underwear and weaponry. 


The collection of original identification documents shows how requirements for migrants has changed over time and across countries. View the memorabilia of the clubs and associations formed by migrants for over a century. As the oldest museum of its kind in Australia, the Migration Museum is at the forefront of research and studies in this area.


Observe cultural differences, and the ways they change over time through genuine cultural artifacts. The Buring pipe collection shows pipes used by smokers throughout Adelaide’s history and how they differ between communities. As you listen to audio exhibits of the stories of many of South Australia’s migrants, you’ll begin to understand the various reasons people move to a new countryT.

The Dame Roma Mitchell collection exhibits an extensive assortment of traditional costumes. One highlight is a Chinese costume given to Dame Roma’s aunt when she was just a teenager. Historical relics from early Australian settlers shed light on life in Adelaide in the 19th century, with a collection of 1,400 relics dating back to British settlement. 

In addition to these permanent collections, there are usually a variety of touring and temporary exhibitions. Guided tours are available for a fee and are a great way to get the most out of your visit. 


The Migration Museum is located on the same block as the South Australian Museum and the Art Gallery of South Australia in the North Terrace cultural precinct, a short walk from the city center. The Adelaide central train terminus is a five-minute walk away. There are paid parking lots nearby, as are bus and tram stops.

The museum is open daily, except Christmas Day and Good Friday, and entry is free. The museum is completely wheelchair accessible.


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