Carisbrooke Park is a beautiful green space around the serene Little Para River comprising expansive lawns, water features, playgrounds, and relaxing walking trails.
Bordered by Main North Road and opposite the Old Spot Hotel, Carisbrooke Park is part of a network of grassy reserves linked by the Little Para River Trail. This park features the gentle winding Little Para River and two man-made waterfalls. An easy walk takes you down the grassy slopes to the river’s edge. When in season, you can let the kids play by the water under supervision as you enjoy the relaxing sounds of the flowing stream, or just sit back and enjoy the wide-open space. Walkers will appreciate the numerous walking trails, which at points are flanked by astonishing stretches of bright red-earth cliffs. A mature network of canoe-cut gum trees accompanies these views and forms part of the natural terrain. If you’re looking for more traditional park facilities, you’ll find a playground with specially upgraded geometric style equipment. Set on rubber flooring under a generous shade structure, it’s a great area to use while being protected from hard ground and woolly weather. Including gym equipment that doubles as a fun climbing attraction for younger ones and a unique workout spot for adults. You’ll also find slides, a large number of swings, wobbly balance beam, toddler’s play area and a sandpit complete with pulleys. Picnic and barbeque areas with toilet facilities are here too. You can’t miss the giant, hollowed-out tree trunk by the equipment, which provides an impressive visual and a fun structure for everyone to explore. Kids will love crawling through and hiding in and around it. Need more? Follow the walking trail a short 1.2kms to Harry Bowey Reserve where there are rope climbs, a twin flying fox, picnic areas, a cricket pitch and steel-net tennis courts.
Safety and Access
- Note that the trails are shared with pedestrians, cyclists and pets on leashes. Please be mindful to make space for others.
- Trails run through isolated and obscured areas. Please be aware of your surroundings and have a phone on hand in case of an emergency.
- Parking is available via Slip Road by Malinya Drive or directly off Main North Road.
Carisbrooke Park was once known as Carisbrooke Orangery and established by Leslie William Francis Jenkins in 1898. Due to the Little Para River’s resource as a critical source of water and fertile soil, this Salisbury area was perfect for citrus fruit growers and became well known for its orchards. Some orchard trees still remain and can be seen along the trails.
For a park with a lot of open space, grass to relax on or to play sports and a good variety of equipment, Carisbrooke Park is perfect for a quiet respite from suburbia.
Half an hour out from Adelaide city, it can be found opposite the Old Spot Hotel. Enter via Main North Road to access the carpark. On foot, you will cross the Little Para River to the playground and fitness areas. The first thing you will notice is a couple of picnic areas right by an elaborate fitness setup on rubberised flooring protected from the sun by a large sail. This equipment also doubles up as a great climbing structure for kids. Beyond the fitness equipment is a set of five swings, including a round swing for the bigger kids who’d like a little more movement in their play.
There is also a rope climbing frame next to this that is more horizontal than vertical allowing for climbing safely near the ground. To the right, you will see a set of colourful set of junior equipment set on a sandpit by the park’s iconic hollowed-out tree trunk. Great for younger kids, the equipment includes platforms pulleys, buckets and a propeller. They can also enjoy a mini tunnel and explore and hide around the tree trunk. Little flower sound tubes add a cute communicative element allowing kids to talk to each other from either side of the equipment.
A little further than this is the main play equipment set on bark chips also under a large sail. With a variety of platforms, poles and a couple of slides, there’s plenty kids will love. The steering wheel and clock features will get their imaginations moving. Cute little animal spring rockers surround the equipment for those up for a ride or perhaps a spin on the rope carousel will take their fancy. Past this are five more swings for juniors and includes a more safety-conscious orange swing for little ones. All swings are over bark chips or rubberised flooring ensuring a soft landing if anyone slips off.
A short walk from the swings is the BBQ and another picnic table, so parents and carers can cook up a delicious meal while keeping an eye of the kids. The multiple toilet block can also be found near here, including a wheelchair accessible unit. Right around here is also a large undercover entertainment area that is available for hire with kitchen and an area for amusements like a jumping castle if you’d like to organise a larger gathering. Contact Council for hire details on 8406 8222.