Hidden Gems of the Park Lands
There’s an alphabet of activities that take place in the city’s greenest space every day. Discover the A-Z of free adventures and opportunities to connect with nature and your neighbours in the Adelaide Park Lands!
A – Archery
It doesn’t take a Herculean effort to try your hand at archery in Adelaide. Archery has been practised in the Park Lands for almost 140 years! There’s a dedicated practice park in North Adelaide and the local archery club welcomes beginners.
B – Barbies
Pick up some snags and fire up the barbie! You never need to travel too far to host a family feast with free barbecues dotted all throughout the park lands. There are barbecues accessible for wheelchair users at the Pityarilla Activity Hub.
C – Courts
Bring yourself, a friend and a ball, and head over to one of the many basketball, tennis and netball courts throughout the Adelaide Park Lands. Some of the courts are tucked away out of sight so there’s no need to stress if your swing is a bit rusty. Book a court or just try your luck and rock up!
D – Dogs
More than just a treat for people, the Adelaide Park Lands are a fantastic resource for our four-legged friends. The Pityarilla Dog Park and the North Adelaide Dog Park are fenced areas filled with activities and open space for dogs to run.
E – Ecosystems
Did you know that there are at least four distinct ecosystems in the City of Adelaide area? Step into a park and back in time to see what Adelaide looked like two hundred years ago. Spot silky tea-tree, golden wattle and river red gums in six key biodiversity areas found throughout the Adelaide Park Lands.
F – Fig Trees
There’s nothing quite like nestling between the protective roots of a beautiful Adelaide Moreton Bay Fig tree. These immense trees have been stretching their boughs and knotted roots across the grass of Adelaide parks for well over a hundred years. You can find these trees to nestle beside in many parks including Botanic Park, Whitmore Square / Iparrityi, Stella Bowen Park, Possum Park / Pirltawardli.
G – Golf
How many cities offer you golf on their doorstep? The North Adelaide Golf Course, comprised of the stunning South Course, more intricate North Course and the accessible Par 3, has long been a favourite for Adelaideans. Plus it’s also a beautifully landscaped area for taking a stroll – just keep an eye out for golfers!
H – Horses
The North Adelaide Park Lands are home to beautiful horses owned by people from around Adelaide. Spotting our equine friends right in the city is a special experience for locals and visitors in the nearby Gover North Playspace.
I – Indigenous Plants
Peaceful pockets of indigenous plants and native vegetation can be found throughout the Adelaide Park Lands. If you have sharp eyes you may be lucky enough to spot the rare Chequered Copper butterfly among the native grassland in Victoria Park / Pakapakanthi. Take a closer look at the pockets of indigenous flora next time you’re walking along the river in Bonython Park / Tulya Wardli and Mistletoe Park / Tainmuntilla.
J – Jump
The sport of long jump might be a distant memory from your school days but if you want to get back into it, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to know there’s a long jump pit in the Park Lands! Hop into Blue Gum Park / Kurangga and leap your way to the Olympics… or just to more limber limbs.
K – Kite Flying
Get swept up in the whimsy and wonder of kite flying! The open expanses of the south and west park lands are an ideal setting for kite flying and perhaps a spot of cloud watching.
L – Lawn Bowls
Lawn bowls has undergone somewhat of a rejuvenation in recent years - now being recognised as a fun social activity for all ages. Whether you’re up for a lazy afternoon bowl, or more serious competition, the Adelaide Bowling Club is the home of lawn bowls in the Adelaide Park Lands.
M – Model Aircraft
It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s a drone! If you’re the proud pilot of a model aircraft, you can fly it in designated areas within the Adelaide Park Lands. Dedicated pilots can hone their skills by connecting with licensed clubs and groups.
N – Nature Play
Take the kids to explore the city’s backyard and challenge them use their imagination! Nature play encourages children to spend more time outdoors and connect with natural elements in unstructured play environments. The Adelaide Park Lands are perfect to climb a tree, build a leafy shelter, collect feathers or interact with the custom nature play equipment in many city playspaces.
Image: Wild Imagination
O – Olive Groves
Olives have been grown in the Park Lands for almost 200 years! Today the groves are smaller but are still producing beautiful fruit which can be picked by anyone who acquires a license. If you’re not keen on oil making and brining, the groves are just a gorgeous spot for a picnic or place to walk your pooch.
Olive groves are located in Parks 7, 8, 15, 16 and 27
P – Playspaces
Pack your compass, pull on your thinking caps and put away the screens because the city’s playspaces are calling you to explore. The Adelaide Park Lands are home to ten unique playspaces where kids and families can be active and let their imaginations run wild. There are opportunities for all ages and abilities to have fun and be challenged.
Q – Quick Run
If you find it tricky to make time to work up a sweat, the city’s running loops might be the perfect solution. The paths surrounding the River Torrens / Karrawirra Pari, vary from 1km to 6km. Pack your sneakers in your briefcase and pop out at lunctime.
R – Ride
Whether you’re on your training wheels or two wheels, the Adelaide Park Lands provide the opportunity for everyone to get involved in cycling. Between grassy plains and trails of winding paths, it makes the ideal location to learn or test yourself without the hassle of cars or roads to worry about.
S – Sculpture
Sculptures aren’t always squirreled away in art galleries, a quick walk through the Park Lands will uncover many stunning artworks. In the east Botanic Gardens, the glass sculpture ‘Cascade’ is made of 500 pieces of precision cut glass in the shape of a crashing wave.
Image: Photographer Sergio Redegalli
T – Track
Grab your bike and sense of adventure and prepare to get dirty at the south Park Lands BMX tracks. It’s said more than 1,000 stacks happen on this track each year so remember to wear your helmet…
U – Ultimate Frisbee
The majestic and gravity-defying sport of frisbee is a fun past-time for most but for some, it’s serious business! All you need is a space, some markers, a Frisbee and some enthusiasm to delve into the world of Ultimate Frisbee. There are various clubs that welcome both beginners and experts to play around the Adelaide Park Lands.
V – Vegetables
Just like any suburban garden, the Adelaide Park Lands have veggie patches and herb gardens! Being a part of one of the many community gardens allows you to curate your very own space in the city’s backyard, and then enjoy the fruits of your labor.
W – Working Out
If the gym isn’t your thing, then the Adelaide Park Lands may be your workout wonderland. Enjoy the fresh air while using the free exercise equipment which can be found in locations throughout the park lands. The wide variety of equipment provides opportunities for weight training, cardio, stretching and interval training.
X – Marks the spot!
Put on your hiking boots and dust off your sense of adventure. Little ones will adore a day following the Park Lands Treasure Adventure map. Start your journey at the North Adelaide Golf Course and see where the trail leads you!
Y – Yoga
The tranquil spaces of the Adelaide Park Lands provide a perfect contrast to the hustle and bustle of the city centre. Step into the city’s calmest space and let your mind escape by practicing yoga. Adelaide Park Lands’ open lawns and secluded nooks make for a tranquil and ideal setting for both individual and group yoga practice.
Z – Zoo
Visit the zoo and immerse yourself in the habitats of our furry friends and discover both local and exotic animals like Giant Pandas Wang Wang and Funi. Sitting on the edge of Botanic Park, nestled on the River Torrens / Karrawirra Pari, the Adelaide Zoo really is the definition of somewhere for the whole family.