Melbourne City

Places You Might Have Not Seen Around Melbourne

We have reviewed many playgrounds and things to do in Melbourne and Geelong and these are the pick of the crop. Click on the link to each playground for more information such as facilities list, full review and location map. Each playground also has a link to a slideshow of photos of the playground.

Melbourne Park

Maddingley Park, Taverner Street, Maddingley

This super adventure playground which is surrounded by a fence with a couple of places for entry/exit is far from the madding Melbourne crowd. You can enter via the “Avenue of Honour” and immerse yourself in a tangled mix of towers, nine swings, see-saw, wooden train and carriage, tunnels, lots of levels, nooks and crannies, huts, rubber walkways, monkey rungs, chain traverses, three tunnel slides, hidden cubbies, balance beam, chain ladders, scrambling wall and bow of a boat.

There are unshaded bench seats inside the playground area. Outside the fenced area are a big sandpit and a modern structure with slides. Also a shelter with seats, unshaded tables, water tap and toilets.

The area has tables and seats, toilets and water tap plus a huge grassy area with gardens. The playground is very well protected from the road by a fence and gardens.

Read more about this topic at https://www.melbourneplaygrounds.com.au/

Melbourne Beach

St Kilda Beach

Cosmopolitan St Kilda Beach is one of Melbourne’s most popular attractions. The historic pier and penguins, summer sporting and music events, kiteboarding, cafes and restaurants, nightlife and multi-use promenade, provide something for everyone.

St Kilda is a wide, sandy beach that is suitable for swimming and a host of other activities. St Kilda Pier is a favorite for promenading and taking in excellent city skyline views and fabulous sunsets. A ferry service operates to Williamstown and Southbank whilst, the marina has extensive boating facilities, including ramps.

Nearby reserves have picnic, barbecue and play facilities and there are paths suitable for bicycling, walking and rollerblading.

St Kilda Beach has been modified by foreshore development. Today the main beach is 650 m long. The beach abuts the side of St Kilda Marina in the south, with Brooks Jetty also crossing the southern end, while the St Kilda Pier and breakwater form the northern boundary.

As a result of these structures, the beach has widened at each end. The beach is backed by the busy Esplanade, however, parking is limited.

The safest section is from the lifesaving club to the northern pier, which is also a No Boating Zone. Stay clear of the southern pier and breakwater.

This beach is used more by St Kilda locals than visitors, as parking and amenities are limited.

St Kilda Beach has a General Beach Hazard Rating of 3/10 (Least hazardous). The beach is patrolled by the St Kilda Life Saving Club. The long beach stretches from St Kilda pier in the west to St Kilda Marina in the east and has a moderate to narrow width along its length.

There is a colony of 1200 Little Penguins at the breakwater at the end of St Kilda pier. If you go to St Kilda Pier just before dusk you’ll see the penguins swimming in at the end of the day and climbing the breakwater rocks into their nests.

A wide concrete promenade backs the beach and there is attractive wooden decking in sections. At the west end, the promenade is dotted with palm trees and there are restaurants with outdoor restaurants overlooking the water which makes for a lively and busy scene when the weather is nice.

Restaurants include Beachcombers, Encore St Kilda Beach, Republica and Captain Baxter. The St Kilda Sea Baths are located in the midst of this area. This area only has paid to park.

Altona Beach melbourne

When you get past the restaurants there is an area of palm trees with unshaded seats, a water tap and a huge grassy area. At the east end of the big grassy area, there is another area with seats and a water tap. At the back of the beach where there is a patch of grass with BBQs, an unshaded table and seats which is located beside the busy Beaconsfield Parade.

Walk through the curved archway or follow the steps and path to reach the beach. There is a row of nice seats to relax on here.

St Kilda Life Saving Club is located west of Donovan’s restaurant. The beach widens momentarily in front of Donovan’s restaurant before reaching the small, dilapidated Brooks Jetty where there are beach showers and a water tap. At this point, you are opposite Luna Park.

The decking in this area has layers and creates a lot of seating places. There is a 200m section of the beach past the jetty which is fairly wide but had quite a lot of seaweed when we visited. It is backed by a bicycle path. The east end is rocky. There is a small, basic playground here with a shaded table, unshaded table, BBQs, water tap and toilets. The St Kilda skatepark is located at this end.

Melbourne Park

Presidents Park, McGrath Rd, Wyndham Vale

Fantastic adventure playground with a huge amount of play equipment including three wave slides, tunnel slide, straight slide, lots of climbing walls, chain bridges and traverses, stepping stones, tunnels, ladders, crocodile, large Bertie the Beatle springer, music-making activities, balance beams, walkways, steps, fireman’s pole, monkey bars, twelve swings of different varieties, ride on bull made from suspended tyres, wooden train, large cubby house and disks on a vertical pole.

There are toilets, water tap plus BBQs and sheltered tables scattered about. It is next to a very good Skate Park and in an area with ten softball and hockey fields, three baseball diamonds, a large lake and plenty of open space. There is even a dog obedience area next door to which you could potentially send your kids if they misbehave.

Melbourne Park

Werribee Park (Werribee)

Werribee Park is an outstanding historic and cultural attraction offering an authentic insight into Australia’s richly diverse history. Located just 30 minutes from central Melbourne, the property features a superbly-restored 1870s mansion, ten hectares of exquisite formal gardens. T

he internationally acclaimed Victoria State Rose Garden, contemporary sculpture walk, tranquil riverine, original farmyard and specialized tours.

Things to See and Do

The Mansion

Rediscover a bygone era with a journey through a beautifully restored 1870s Italianate-style mansion. Listen to the chatter of the Chirnside family with an intriguing audio tour individually themed to each room. Enter the separate laundry and visit May, an enthusiastic laundry maid with a tragic story to tell.

Seminary Years Exhibition

Explore an exhibition within the mansion dedicated to the seminary years of Werribee Park. The exhibition encompasses an impressive collection of photographs and information that documents the use and expansion of the property during the Catholic Church’s 50-year residency.

A typical day in the life of the student priests is highlighted, complete with a replica of their sparse rooms in Josephs Wing (now converted into the deluxe accommodation of Sofitel Mansion & Spa).

Read more about this topic at https://www.melbourneplaygrounds.com.au/

Tower Tour

Enjoy a personalized tour of the mansion tower with an informative guide. Hear further details about Werribee Park and the surrounding district with a spectacular view.

Formal Gardens

Escape the hustle and bustle within ten hectares of exquisite formal gardens featuring a colorful parterre display, ornamental lake and grotto, expansive lawns, heritage-listed trees and historical glasshouses. Pack a picnic and while away the afternoon with family and friends.

Sculpture Walk

Journey into the world of contemporary sculpture with a stroll through this extraordinary outdoor exhibition. Featuring an interesting collection of works by Australia’s leading sculptors, the walk meanders through a unique selection of natural landscape and encompasses various sections of the property.

Riverine

Absorb the soothing surrounds of Werribee River in the stunning riverine. Take a few moments to appreciate a mix of treasures within; ranging from ancient to contemporary, natural to man-made.

Farm

Contemplate life from the worker’s perspective in the original farmyard. Rustic bluestone outbuildings, once abuzz with workers and activity, provide a stark contrast to the elaborate craftsmanship of the mansion.

Audio Tour

Delve further into the history and stories of Werribee Park with an engaging audio tour. Hire an audio wand and listen to an interesting series of conversations and information in a range of areas, including the mansion, formal gardens, sculpture walk and farm.

Victoria State Rose Garden

Delight in the irresistible color and fragrance of over 5,000 roses displayed to perfection within four uniquely shaped designs. The feature display is set in the shape of a Tudor Rose containing thousands of modern roses. Two themed displays complete the rose design; a Federation Leaf dedicated to Australian roses and the David Austin Bud showcasing roses of 46 cultivars.

The Rose Garden is separated from the mansion’s formal gardens by a Heritage Border featuring unusual and historic roses from around the world. In bloom from October to May, the roses are at their most magnificent from November to April.

The Helen Lempriere National Sculpture Award

As Australia’s richest annual prize for sculptors in Australia, the annual Helen Lempriere National Sculpture Award fosters and promotes contemporary Australian sculpture. Throughout Autumn every year, sculptures of the selected finalists are exhibited throughout the formal gardens of Werribee Park, forming a spectacular setting to appreciate the wide variety of work

Facilities

  • Audiovisual displays
  • Self-guided touring leaflets
  • Cafe & Giftshop
  • Picnic tables & chairs throughout formal gardens
  • BBQs and shelter alongside Victoria State Rose Garden
  • Car & coach parking
  • Walking paths
  • Viewing Platform
  • Access and facilities for disabled visitors

Read more about this topic at https://www.melbourneplaygrounds.com.au/

Melbourne Park

Wyndham Park Playground, Comben Drive, Werribee

A fantastic new play complex has been created at Wyndham Park along the Werribee River. It includes an adventure playground, nature play area, multiple outdoor gyms, small skatepark, central lawn, display garden, toilets and lots of picnic facilities.

Access to the park is provided by two impressive bridges spanning the Werribee river – Wyndham Bridge leading from the Wedge Street Plaza and Bicentennial Bridge from the parking area on Comden Drive. The Riverbank parking area on Comden Drive has 3-hour parking (9 am – 5:30 pm Mon – Fri).

At the west end of the park is the adventure playground which is dominated by a 12 meter high tower that has a fast twisting metal tunnel slide. Getting up to the top of the slide is an adventure in itself. 

Getting to the first level is easy using some steps. At this point, there are two vertical rope tunnels. If you just want to get to the next level and no further, then take the right-hand tunnel which leads to the second level which has some hanging swing seats.

The left-hand rope tunnel continues past this level and goes to the topmost third level which has some seats, telescopes and most importantly, the entrance to the slide. These rope tunnels are quite a squeeze for larger kids.

The whole playground is set on soft colorful surfaces with multiple levels. Next to the tower is a giant green rope climbing frame and a smaller climbing tower with a metal slides for those who don’t dare take on the bigger one.

At this level, there is also a flying fox with two lanes (one with a disk seat and the other was missing when we visited). 

The level above has a range of play equipment including a hamster wheel which a person curls up in and gets spun around, which is a good simulation of being hurled into space – those less than 120cm tall shouldn’t ride in case they get flung out.

Other equipment is a spinning stand-on carousel, stepping stone area, course sandpit with play table, mound with a little slide, four-person rocker and swings.

Just down the hill are some more swings with long chains (put some effort into the swinging and it’s like flying to the moon), birds nest swing and a massively wide metal slide for mass sliding. A shelter with two tables, two unshaded tables, a water tap and BBQs sits above the playground area and on the west side are more unshaded tables and BBQs.

At the east end of the park, about 250m away from the Adventure Playground, is the nature play area which is water play heaven.

There are six water pumps scattered about which are used to bring up water from belonging to let it run down through water troughs, water tables and channels with barriers that can be rotated, raised or lowered to change the flow of water. 

There is even a water augur to bring up water from below. It’s your choice whether you want to get wet with all this water flowing or try crossing the balance beams above the water and leave your degree of dryness to your balance skills.

The center of the play area has a big soft mound with rock steps, scrambling rope, a little wave slide and a bridge leading to an elevated cubby. This cubby can be reached by steps, rope net, wooden ladder, climbing wall or scrambling wall. The area also has some wooden tepees, coarse sandpit with a digger, xylophone, another sandpit with water play features i.e. wet sandpit, a forest of metal trees and a lovely path with segments formed from materials of various textures and patterns. There are some shaded and unshaded seats in this area.

 

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