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18 national parks in Adelaide where you can walk your dog

Looking for parks to walk your dog? Here are 18, including a hidden gem where you can let your pet off lead.

Dogs are welcome at many of South Australia’s national parks – but owners must take the lead.

When exploring SA’s parks pop a leash (no longer than 2 metres long) on your four-legged friend and pick up their poo – our native wildlife will thank you.

Why take the lead? Check out our blog Everything you need to know about taking dogs in SA’s national parks for more.

Here are 18 dog-friendly parks for you to visit in metropolitan Adelaide:

North of Adelaide CBD:

1. Anstey Hill Recreation Park

Be sure to visit Anstey Hill Recreation Park in spring when the wildflowers and orchids are in bloom.

2. Para Wirra Conservation Park

Para Wirra Conservation Park offers a beautiful bushland setting, as well as recreational facilities and a sports oval ideal for a lazy afternoon game of cricket.

3. Cobbler Creek Recreation Park

Nestled between Golden Grove and Salisbury, Cobbler Creek Recreation Park is an oasis in the suburbs. If you are visiting with the kids be sure to check out the magnificent Kites and Kestrels Playspace. Some of the trails in the park are bike trails only, so be sure to check out a map before you head off.

4. Wara Wayingga-Tennyson Dunes Conservation Reserve

If you’re heading to Wara Wayingga-Tennyson Dunes Conservation Reserve don’t forget to download the Tennyson Dunes Discovery Trail app. You can learn about this unique dune system by listening to the audio walking tours.

South of Adelaide CBD:

5. Marino Conservation Park

Explore Marino Conservation Park along the designated walking trail and fire access tracks and take in the stunning scenic views over Brighton, Glenelg, Grange and the Marino Rocks Lighthouse.

6. O’Halloran Hill Recreation Park

Explore O’Halloran Hill Recreation Park along its network of walking trails, horse riding trails and fire tracks. Shade from the regenerated grey box eucalypts and river red gums provide the perfect spot for a picnic.

7. Shepherds Hill Recreation Park

Shepherds Hill Recreation Park features an old railway tunnel, the remains of a viaduct and a 360 degree view of the surrounding Adelaide plains, coastline and hills.

8. Sturt Gorge Recreation Park

Sturt Gorge Recreation Park conserves the nationally threatened Greybox Grassy Woodland vegetation and is home to a rock formation known as Sturt tillite, believed to have formed 800 million years ago.

9. Onkaparinga River Recreation Park

There is lots to do at Onkaparinga River Recreation Park, wander along the wetland boardwalks, ride a bicycle on the shared use trails, kayak the calm waters or just be at peace with nature.

10. Glenthorne National Park-Ityamaiitpinna Yarta

Glenthorne National Park-Ityamaiitpinna Yarta is Adelaide’s newest national park, located 16 km south of the CBD in O’Halloran Hill.

Its gates have recently opened to allow visitors to enjoy a temporary loop trail and the great news is, it’s dog-friendly.

The rest of the park is still under construction and is not quite open for visitors just yet. You can access maps and opening hours on the National Parks and Wildlife Service South Australia website and also find out more about the creation of Glenthorne.

East of Adelaide CBD and Adelaide Hills:

11. Belair National Park

With beautiful natural bushland and featuring numerous picnic areas, tennis courts and walking trails, Belair National Park is an ideal place to get active outdoors.

12. Brownhill Creek Recreation Park

A popular bushland area, Brownhill Creek Recreation Park covers 51 hectares and is located just eight kilometres from Adelaide.

13. Greenhill Recreation Park

A small park bordering Chambers Gully and Cleland Conservation Park, Greenhill Recreation Park has rewarding views over the Adelaide Plains.

14. Totness Recreation Park

Totness Recreation Park is a hidden gem. The trails are easy to walk and includes a boardwalk and space for picnics at the water’s edge.

15. Ferguson Conservation Park

Just 10 minutes from the Adelaide CBD, Ferguson Conservation Park offers a network of short trails great for a quick stroll after work.

16. Morialta Conservation Park

Take your pooch on a family picnic at Morialta Conservation Park and sit back while the kids explore Adelaide’s biggest nature playground. Dogs are only allowed in the Morialta picnic area and along Morialta Falls Road to the Morialta Falls car park.

17. Mount George Conservation Park

A popular park for bushwalkers and birdwatchers, Mount George Conservation Park boasts superb views of the surrounding hills. Your dog is welcome within the recreation zone between Mount George Road and Cox Creek.

18. Blackwood Forest Recreation Park

Last but not least is Blackwood Forest Recreation Park. As long as your dog remains under effective control its welcome to explore this park off lead. There are plenty of paths to follow and some great historical buildings to discover.

Visited a national park with your dog lately? Leave a comment below and share your experiences, tips, photos and recommendations for other dog owners. For more info about dogs in national parks, go to the national parks website.

This story was originally posted in November 2015.

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