Parramatta Park is one of Sydney’s most historic places. In the centre of the park is Old Government House, which, along with the surrounding pack, is one of 11 sites that form the Australian Convict Sites World Heritage property. The park is also notable for its Aboriginal heritage: Evidence of Aboriginal occupation from over 200,000 years ago has been found there.
Sydney-siders have been enjoying Parramatta Park for recreation for a long time – it became a public park in 1858 – making it one of the earliest designated public parks in the world.
We particularly love the recently renovated Domain Creek Playground in Parramatta Park – it’s located on the Westmead side of the park, opposite the Queens Road Gatehouse.
The playground features activities for all ages and abilities, including flying foxes, swings, slides, trampolines, water pumps, sand pits, small trampolines built into the ground and spinning carousels.
Each section is connected by ramps and walkways, making it easy for strollers and wheelchairs to get between each area.
The double flying fox is a particularly popular feature of the new park, with one of the flying foxes adapted to be used by people with disabilities. The seatbelt feature makes it popular with young children too, who are a bit scared to use the regular one.
Adventurous kids will also enjoy the slide, which requires thrill-seekers to climb up a rope ladder to the top, and then scoot along to the top of the slide. Getting up was a bit scary for little Cheese due to the lack of handholds to pull herself up at the top of the rope ladder, but she had no problem climbing it, or going down the slide, either.
Other sections of the playground worth noting include water pumps that flow into a sand pit, a climbing net that looks like a spider’s web, a second sand pit with equipment for bigger kids like sand diggers, swings, and one last sandpit in the shade that was ideal for small kids.
The playground is beautifully designed to blend into the bush surrounding it, with plenty of fun surprise activities to discover. In the bush section in the middle of the playground few discovered a bush xylophone and cubby house, and there are also small metal sculptures of native Australian animals and a few roses dotted around the park.
The playground doesn’t have a shade cloth over it and there are very few sections with tree coverage, making it a bit of a scorcher on a hot day – particularly the metal play equipment. I would suggest this playground for milder to cold weather!
Bathrooms are also scarce – the nearest ones are a good 10 mins walk away at the Parramatta park Cafes, near the Queen Gate Entrance.
Near the playground is the river and lake, which is home to many birds such as ducks and ibis. Watching the birds is also an excellent way to entertain the little ones.
Hungry? Grab breakfast, lunch or a coffee to go from Parramatta Park Cafe.
Domain Creek Playground, Parramatta Park
Pitt St & Macquarie St, Parramatta
Bathrooms: No – nearest one is a few mins walk away at nearby Parramatta Park Cafe.
Picnic tables: Yes
Shade cover: No
Off-street parking: Yes
Children’s playground: Yes
Water features: Yes (but minimal)
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby!