Top 5 things to do with dad in parks this Father's Day

Top 5 things to do with dad in parks this Father’s Day

Say no to socks and jocks this Father’s Day – here are five expe­ri­ences that you can enjoy togeth­er instead.

With parks all across South Aus­tralia there are so many spaces to get out­doors and enjoy a walk, a chat, a bike ride, a cof­fee or a barbie.

Why not give Dad a day out in a park, get some spring sun­shine and con­nect with fam­i­ly, friends and nature this Father’s Day?

Try one of these five things to do:

1.Take a vis­it to some­where special

What bet­ter way to spend these ear­ly days of spring than at one of South Australia’s most icon­ic nat­ur­al des­ti­na­tions, Cle­land Wildlife Park?

Most of Cle­land Wildlife Park’s ani­mals – from the park’s most well-known res­i­dents to the most elu­sive – live in nat­ur­al habi­tat, mak­ing it easy to get up-close for great photos.

Look out for mar­su­pi­als such as koalas, kan­ga­roos, wal­la­bies, wom­bats, bet­tongs, and potoroos, check out the dai­ly keep­er talks, walk through the bird aviaries and dis­cov­er the park’s noc­tur­nal res­i­dents in the Ocean to Out­back centre.

You can also hand feed ani­mals like kan­ga­roos, emus and potoroos with no bar­ri­er between you, which is a tru­ly spe­cial expe­ri­ence. Or you could book in for an extra spe­cial ani­mal expe­ri­ence, like cock­a­too expe­ri­ence, a rep­tile expe­ri­ence or a Koala Hold.

If you buy an annu­al mem­ber­ship online, you’ll not only have a great Father’s Day gift and some­where to go on the day, but you’ll also be able to vis­it Cle­land all year round.

Top 5 things to do with dad in parks this Father's Day

2. Chuck a prawn on the barbie

If he’s one of those dads who loves get­ting on the tongs, you can gath­er to chuck a prawn on the bar­bie at parks across South Aus­tralia. Try a park with a play­ground and keep the kids hap­py too.

Belair Nation­al Park

There are BBQs spread through­out this park, from Play­ford Lake to the Gums Oval, Kar­ka pic­nic area and beyond. We reck­on the Adven­ture Play­ground with its near­by BBQs is a great place to spend the day with family.

Find your per­fect spot: grab a park map or check the park out with Google Street View.

Ade­laide Dol­phin Sanctuary

One of the gems of met­ro­pol­i­tan Ade­laide, the Ade­laide Dol­phin Sanc­tu­ary is home to res­i­dent bot­tlenose dol­phins, with oth­er tran­sient dol­phins that vis­it at var­i­ous times. Try to spot them from the shore at Gar­den Island, where there’s a board­walk and a BBQ area.

Find your per­fect spot: grab a park map or check the park out with Google Street View.

Onka­paringa Riv­er Nation­al Park

There are sev­er­al for­mal pic­nic areas in this park, with ameni­ties, free bar­be­cues and love­ly views. Next to gate 25 you’ll find a shady pic­nic ground with shel­ters, ameni­ties, and free BBQs. It’s tucked in behind one of South Australia’s best-known winer­ies, so you can pick up a fine bot­tle of red to pair with your meal.

Find your per­fect spot: grab a park map or check the park out with Google Street View.

Top 5 things to do with dad in parks this Father's Day

3. Walk it off

Indulged in too much pav at your Father’s Day lunch? Rem­i­nisce with Dad about that time he told you to walk it off on one of these easy jaunts.

Vic­to­ria Hill Cir­cuit Hike

This 1.4km cir­cuit hike at Para Wirra Recre­ation Park explores the for­mer mine work­ings of Vic­to­ria Hill, a scene of much activ­i­ty in the late 1860s. Inter­pre­tive signs pro­vide infor­ma­tion about mine shafts, mine work­ings and the for­mer town that was once here. We rec­om­mend walk­ing the trail as an anti­clock­wise loop and begin­ning the hike from the carpark on Allen­dale Road near Bow­den Cottage.

Kai Kai Nature Trail

Kai Kai is the Ngar­rind­jeri word mean­ing plain’. The Kai Kai Nature Trail pass­es along Katara­p­ko Creek bank and through the sur­round­ing flood plain. Along the trail there are inter­pre­tive signs explain­ing the range of life found on the flood plain and how the plants and ani­mals live togeth­er through sea­son­al water changes. It’s locat­ed near camp­site 38 in the Katara­p­ko Creek sec­tion of Mur­ray Riv­er Nation­al Park.

4. Have a wheely good adventure

Some dads think life is bet­ter on two wheels. There are so many moun­tain bik­ing trails to explore across South Aus­tralia – here are three that are good for the kids, too. Find out more about moun­tain bik­ing in parks before you go.

Cow Bones Loop

This is a 2km loop in Sturt Gorge Recre­ation Park that’s a mix of open and twisty trail. Fea­tur­ing dense aca­cia for­est, it’s best for rid­ers with an inter­me­di­ate skill level.

Grab a park map or check the park out with Google Street View.

Pump Track

This is a great place at Cob­bler Creek Recre­ation Park for begin­ner to advanced rid­ers to hone their rid­ing skills. Pump tracks teach body posi­tion­ing, cor­ner­ing and jump­ing tech­niques. How many laps can you do with­out pedalling?

Grab a park map or check the park out with Google Street View.

Meas­days Loop

Ride on exist­ing fire tracks and be intro­duced to some unique areas of Cle­land Nation­al Park. Start­ing from Meas­days look­out, this trail fol­lows the land con­tour grad­u­al­ly end­ing up in the creek line val­ley below. With win­ter just fin­ish­ing, you may be reward­ed with the bab­ble of a flow­ing creek.

Grab a park map or check the park out with Google Street View.

5. Con­nect over a coffee

What par­ent can sur­vive the day with­out cof­fee? Get your flat white to go with a side order of spec­tac­u­lar nature. Dad’s dai­ly caf­feine nev­er looked so good.

Mount Lofty Summit

You don’t have to hike up Water­fall Gul­ly to enjoy the stun­ning views from Mount Lofty Sum­mit. Grab a cof­fee and spend some time try­ing to find Adelaide’s land­marks from 710 metres above sea lev­el. On clear days, you may even be able to see the out­line of Kan­ga­roo Island in the dis­tance. While you’re there, check out the local­ly-sourced and Aus­tralian-made good­ies at the gift shop. Entry to Mount Lofty Sum­mit is free, how­ev­er, fees apply to park with­in the Mount Lofty Sum­mit car park.

Bark­ing Gecko Café

Locat­ed with­in the leafy sur­round­ings of Cle­land Wildlife Park, the Bark­ing Gecko is a ful­ly sus­tain­able, waste-free café ded­i­cat­ed to bring­ing the very best of local pro­duce to its din­ers. No time to vis­it the wildlife park? Why not grab a quick cof­fee and see if a friend­ly superb blue wren or a curi­ous potoroo decides to join you? Vis­it­ing the café alone does not attract an entrance fee to the wildlife park and there’s plen­ty of free park­ing. You can also vis­it on foot while explor­ing Cle­land Nation­al Park’s exten­sive walk­ing trails.

Stuck for a gift?

If Dad’s a wildlife lover, why not con­sid­er gift­ing a Koala State num­ber plate?

$50 from each plate sale will go toward South Australia’s wildlife res­cue and reha­bil­i­ta­tion sec­tor, sup­port­ing the hard-work­ing organ­i­sa­tions that look after injured and orphaned animals. 

Find out more and order today by vis­it­ing Ezy Plates.

For more infor­ma­tion on how to pur­chase a num­ber plate as a gift, vis­it Ezy Plate’s FAQs.

This sto­ry was orig­i­nal­ly post­ed in Sep­tem­ber 2020.

This con­tent was pro­duced in part­ner­ship with  Good Living