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10 of Canberra’s best playgrounds

HerCanberra Team

Parks and playgrounds are a Canberra mother’s best friend. We round up 10 of the best in the BMW X5 XDRIVE30D.

When it’s warm and sunny outside, there’s no reason to stay home—especially with so many fantastic parks and playgrounds scattered around the city! And while it CAN be just a simple excursion, other times it can seem like an army operation to get everyone into the great outdoors for an extra-special adventure. You need a car that can fit two bikes, a scooter, food and drink for 10 people, the next door neighbour’s kid and the dog in the car.  Good thing the BMW x5 has room for a small tribe.

It’s refined and elegant inside, and while the BMW x5 looks great from the front, when you’re out with the family it’s what’s in the back that counts. It comfortably fits the little guys still in safety seats with lots of room to move, as well as those ‘big kids’.

Boot space is generous with a square shape providing more flexibility for all of the gear you need to cart around, and rear split seats allow for additional space for long items. Best of all?  The boot door can be activated with your key so there’s no need pile everything on the ground and pick it up again whilst balancing a toddler on your hip.  Phew. 

So, ready to go? Here’s where to head.

FADDEN PINES

Fadden Pines. Image: Visit Canberra.

Fadden Pines. Image: Visit Canberra.

This brilliant Tuggeranong park is well worth the drive if you’re on the other side of the city. Set on 41 hectares, there’s an adventure playground, skateboard area and picnic areas in a gorgeous open green space. There is plenty of room for the kids to run around among the trees, and you can make use of the free barbeques and sheltered areas.

Bugden Avenue, Fadden

environment.act.gov.au

GLEBE PARK

Glebe Park is a little oasis in the middle of the city, and a great place to grab a little ‘time out’ when the kids have had enough of being pulled around the shops. There’s some great play equipment, plenty of room to run around, beautiful English Elms and English Oaks to shelter under, playgrounds, a picnic area and more.

Coranderrk Street, Canberra City

environment.act.gov.au

THE POD PLAYGROUND

The Pod Playground at the National Aboretum. Image: Tim Bean Photography.

The Pod Playground at the National Aboretum. Image: Tim Bean Photography.

Head to Pod Playground at the National Arboretum for a play experience that’s close to nature. A beautifully crafted space that reflects the surrounding forests, its giant wooden acorn cubby houses can be reached by clambering breathlessly up through exciting rope tunnels and challenging ladders, only to whizz down again on the slides. It’s definitely reminiscent of the Magic Faraway Tree. There are also several ground-level banksia pods, some with musical instruments, and four swings. Good luck extricating your kids from this playground!

Forest Drive (off Tuggeranong Parkway), Acton

nationalarboretum.act.gov.au

YERRABI POND DISTRICT PARK

If you’re exploring northside, this is a wonderful adventure playground which includes an all-abilities swing, multiple flying foxes, and a slide/climbing structure with cubby spaces underneath. Other features include a skateboard/scooter area, BBQs and shaded picnic areas under the trees. Like John Knight Park, Yerrabi Pond also features a plethora of watery wildlife.

Next to Yerrabi Pond on Wunderlich Street in Gungahlin

environment.act.gov.au

BOUNDLESS CANBERRA

Boundless Playground. Image: Visit Canberra.

Boundless Playground. Image: Visit Canberra.

This incredible all-abilities playground was devised by a group of community-minded public servants as a gift to Canberra on its centenary in 2013. Boundless showcases the benefits of inclusion and diversity, enabling children with disability to explore, play and swing to their hearts’ content alongside their able-bodied peers. There are ramps and cubbies, swings and slides. There’s also a sandpit with diggers!

N.B. The playground will be closed from 4 September until December 2017 while construction takes place on what is promised to be “an even better playground”!

Wendouree Drive, Parkes

boundlesscanberra.org.au

BLACK MOUNTAIN PENINSULA

This is the perfect summer playground – 22.2 hectares of foreshore parkland with lots of grass for natural play, water for swimming and paddling, and some lovely beaches and water’s edge to stroll along. There are also picnic areas, drinking fountains and all-ability-access playgrounds, which make it a great option for everyone (except dogs – they’re not allowed).

Gary Owen Drive, off Lady Denman Drive, Acton.

environment.act.gov.au

KAMBAH ADVENTURE PLAYGROUND

Kambah Adventure Park. Image: Visit Canberra.

Kambah Adventure Park. Image: Visit Canberra.

This is a playground for all ages and abilities, with a tree house, junior and senior flying foxes, giant swings, space net and wheelchair accessible liberty swing guaranteed to keep the children engaged for hours. Take along a picnic hamper, fire up the BBQ and settle in!

Springbett Street, Kambah

tams.act.gov.au

JOHN KNIGHT MEMORIAL PARK

An idyllic spot on the shores of Lake Ginninderra, John Knight Memorial Park is popular with Canberra families, and it’s common to see several generations picnicking together under the trees. The playground includes a tree house, flying fox and play sculpture; and reptile-lovers are in for a treat with the Snake house’s large timber climbing unit featuring a wave board and nest spinner, a climbing net, shop counter with a snake theme and voice tubes for children to speak to each other across the play area. There are also plenty of water birds to watch!

Aikman Drive, Belconnen

environment.act.gov.au 

Head slightly further afield in the BMW X5. Image: Tim Bean Photography.

Head slightly further afield in the BMW X5. Image: Tim Bean Photography.

COTTER AVENUE

About 20 minutes drive from the city centre is Cotter Avenue, an absolute cracker of a playground and park area. There are grassed areas for running around or tossing a ball, BBQs for sausage sizzles and picnics, and a great modern adventure playground – all on the banks of the historic Cotter River. It gets busy on warm weekends, and for good reasons – it’s totally idyllic!

Cotter Road, Cotter.

environment.act.gov.au

TIDBINBILLA NATURE RESERVE

Tidbinbilla. Image: Visit Canberra.

Tidbinbilla. Image: Visit Canberra.

Just out of Canberra (about 40 minutes’ drive) is the amazing Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve. Its Nature Discovery Playground takes inspiration from the natural beauty, form and diversity of the Tidbinbilla Valley and will keep kids busy for hours. When they’ve had enough play, they can see an array of animals (koalas, emus, kangaroos, platypuses, reptiles, possums, echidnas, and more), take a guided walk, or enjoy hands-on educational displays.

Discover more great Canberra parks and playgrounds at environment.act.gov.au—you can search by name, location or activity!

This is a sponsored post, presented in partnership with Rolfe Classic BMW. All recommendations contained within this article have been independently selected and are not associated with any commercial arrangement with HerCanberra.  Find more information about sponsored posts here.

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