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Melbourne
The City of Melbourne has launched the '20 Ways to Play' information pamphlet on the best locations for children to play within the parks and gardens of the city.  The city playgrounds featured in ‘20 Ways to Play' range from the Princes Park in Carlton to Fawkner Park in South Yarra.  To request a copy of the brochure or to see a list and map of the playgrounds click here 
Heres a list of some of our favourites in the city and suburbs:
 
Skinners Adventure Playground
209-211 Dorcas Street, South Melbourne - (03) 9209 6352 Supervised playground for children aged 5 to 12. Children under 5 must be accompanied by an adult. Collins Street tram no. 112. Stop no. 128.
 
Carlton Gardens
Victoria, Rathdowne, Carlton, and Nicholson Streets, Carlton - (03) 9658 9658. The Carlton Gardens and Exhibition Reserve comprises of a rectangular area of approximately 26 hectares. Features Royal Exhibition Building, ornamental lakes, avenues of trees, alley of plane trees, Hochgurtel fountain, children's playground, tennis courts, Melbourne Museum. Bourke Street tram no. 96. Stop no. 12.
 
St Kilda Adventure Playground
Between Neptune Street and Newton Court, St Kilda - (03) 9209 6348.  Supervised playground for children aged 5 to 12. Children under five must be accompanied by an adult. Ponds, trampolines, sporting equipment, bikes, cubbies, flying foxes. Swanston Street tram no. 16. Stop no. 133. 

Hays Paddock - Created largely due to the efforts of two Mothers, Hays Paddock is a wonderful place to spend time with the entire family.

Suitably not far from the site of Kew Cottages, Hays Paddock Playground has been created to cater for children of all abilities. So there are supersize swings, wide paths with textures for the blind, equipment that makes sound and a lot of space around everything for greater access.

The playground is surrounded by a fence and has childsafe catches on the gates near the carpark so children can be allowed to run freely.

Beyond the playground is a vast expanses of open grassland, perfect for family picnics, cricket matches and kicking around a ball. Or just let the kids run wild for a while! There are also some BBQs available on site.

Below the main areas there is also a billabong – with an outlook point built into the playground. Within the park, it is extremely hard to believe it is bordered by the Eastern Freeway's walls.

There is plenty of parking at Hay's Paddock and in the surrounding streets if necessary. The carpark is a bush setting and is separate from the eating and playing areas for safety. Onsite toilets are suitable for everyone, fitting in with the theme of the playground.

For visitors to Melbourne, this park is a great stopping off point before reaching the city when approaching from Melbourne's east. Take the Chandler Hwy exit south from the Eastern freeway on your way into the CBD.

Address: Longstaff St, off Kilby Road, KewEast (between Burke and Belford Roads)
Melways 45 J2      Admission: free

Thanks to Tash Hughes, a Melbourne Mum of two girls and a writer. She also co-owns www.savetimeonline.info to save time for all busy Australians.


Eltham Lower Park - Not far down the road from the shops in Eltham is the Eltham Lower park.

Being on the main road out of Eltham towards the city and southern suburbs it is a great stop off for day trips or on a driving trip into Melbourne. Coming out of Eltham, it is on the left hand side about 200 metres before the big round-about.

Entry through big gates leads you past the miniature railway, which in itself forms a great family activity on weekends and some holidays.

Inside the park, the eye is treated to green – a green oval, green bushes and trees, a green toilet building and even some green in the playground! There is plenty of parking, surrounded by bushes to provide shade on hot days.

The playground is surrounded by tables for picnics, some of which are under shelter next to the coin operated BBQs. There are even two drinking taps available for use.

For kids, there is space to run and climb, as well as swing, slide and use some imagination.

Further into the park, there are more BBQs, another playground, open spaces and two ovals. The park is also surrounded by a bike track for more vigorous play.

Well worth a visit if you're in Melbourne's north east!

Address: Main Road, Eltham, Victoria
Melways 21 H10        Admission: free

Thanks to Tash Hughes, a Melbourne Mum of two girls and a writer. She also co-owns www.savetimeonline.info to save time for all busy Australians.


 

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