Playground Fun

13 December 2010

Our city has just over a hundred cool, free playgrounds - so what better way to entertain your kids in the school holidays than by making the most of them. Here are 10 of our favourites.

Playing at Nairnville Park, Khandallah

Playing at Nairnville Park, Khandallah

First stop is the heart of the city, Waitangi Park, close to the waterfront and surrounded by a meandering stream. There's a skate park, basketball courts, and public toilets next to the play area.

Overlooking our harbour, The Crescent play area in Roseneath is a small park with big views. There are picnic tables, swings and slides plus links with Town Belt walkways on Mt Victoria.

Kids love the rocktopus in the Botanic Garden, and there's also double-pipe tube slides, swings, slides and a flying fox. There are picnic tables, an enclosed area for small children and public toilets.

Also in Thorndon is the peaceful Katherine Mansfield Memorial Park, which includes the Lady McKenzie Garden for the Blind, with its highly-scented raised-beds of aromatic shrubs.

One of the city's undiscovered gems is Central Park in Brooklyn. The 50-metre-long flying fox can take three children on the downhill ride at the same time. There's also a six-metre high space-ball climbing-frame, spinner bowl, climbing-net and bush walks.

Shorland Park in Island Bay also has a great selection of play equipment, including a long slide, swings, pirate ship, basketball half-court and covered band rotunda. Excellent facilities include picnic tables, free barbecues, changing sheds and toilets.

The compact Lyall Bay play area is right on the beach and provides activities for a large range of ages. Public toilets are 100 m down the road.

The longest plastic tube slide in Wellington is a fun feature of Khandallah's Nairnville Park, there's a large play area and plenty of open space.

Tawa boasts two great parks. Willowbank Park, which has a play area for younger kids, large green spaces, a stream and a number of picnic spots and Duncan Park, at the northern end of Tawa, where the large play area includes a huge metal slide.