Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Garden Playground
I absolutely love the Ku-ring-gai Wildflower garden. Everytime I visit I wonder why I don’t spend more time there. In fact, I think it’s such a great place for kids and families that we held my son’s 3rd birthday party there.
The Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Garden is my top activity in St Ives.
Where is Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Garden
The Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Garden is often mistakenly called St Ives Wildflower Garden. The Garden lies on the border of the suburb. The official street address is 420 Mona Vale Road, St Ives.
If you are heading east on Mona Vale you will see it on your left – there is a sign which you can look out for or look out for Richmond Road. I have included the map below for your reference.
Although the Wildflower Garden is situated on busy Mona Vale Road you can barely see or hear the road. You feel like you’re a million miles away when you are walking around in the natural bush.
What to do when you arrive at the Wildflower Garden
Due to the size of the Garden you’ll want to go to the Information Centre when you arrive.
To get to the information centre, go down to the spot where you can turn left or right and go left towards the only building you can see. You will be able to get a map from the Information Centre and some direction on where to go depending on what you want to do.
Ku-ringa-gai Wildflower Garden Features
There are several great aspects to the Wildflower Garden. The garden has walks, bicycle tracks, clearings, natural gardens, animals, ponds and waterfalls. You could spend all day walking around the garden and discovering Australian fauna and flora. There are picnic spots, toilets and plenty of parking on site, the only thing missing is the availability of coffee.
My favourite spot in the garden for when i’m with the kids is Lambert’s Clearing, it has:
- a big open space for the kids to run in
- a playground
- picnic benches
- BBQ facilities
- sometimes the wallabies come out to visit.
I will detail Lambert’s Clearing Playground a bit further down.
If you’re keen on seeing the Wallabies the best time is the afternoon when it’s cool enough for them to wander the grassy patches.
If you don’t get to see the Wallabies you should still stumble across a fair amount of bird life (from Kookaburras to Bush Turkeys), Lizzards and Butterflies.
Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Garden Playground
Lambert’s Clearing has a playground structure with a slide, some swings, a see-saw and some rockers. It is generally empty so while there aren’t many playground structures its enough to keep the kids entertained.
Playground Facilities and Features
As you can see in the pictures above, there is a covered area which has three or four picnic tables which can seat around 20 people. This was the spot that we hired for my son’s birthday party and even though the day had threatened rain and there was a slight drizzle this area was perfect for the party. Below is a direct excerpt from the Kuring-gai Council’s website regarding booking this space
The shelter shed and adjoining barbecue area are available for hire from 8am to 5pm daily (including weekends and public holidays).
The picnic shelter and adjoining barbecue at Lambert’s Clearing can be hired for $35 per hour for up to 25 people, with a minimum booking period of 2 hours on weekdays and 3 hours on weekends. A non-refundable booking fee of $10 will also apply.
Just alongside Lambert’s Clearing is the Fern House and The Knoll Native Garden which has displays of natural Australian ferns, bushes, plants and flowers. My kids love exploring the Native Garden while I read out all the plant names to them again and again.
How to get to the playground
To get to Lambert’s Clearing you’ll have to drive to the parking lot nearest to it and then walk 200m into the Garden. The picture below is of where the parking is in relation to Mona Vale Road and the smaller roads in the Wildflower Garden.
If it looks a bit confusing I’ve set out even more confusing directions below 🙂
To get to the parking nearest to Lambert’s Clearing:
- come into the Gardens through the main entrance and turn left
- follow the road (past Caley’s Pavilion) until you can drive no more
- You will find yourself in a big makeshift parking lot with a tarred but closed road to your left. You can just see Mona Vale road to your right, the gate to your left.
- Park and walk to the closed gate that has a signboard to the right of it.
- Starting beyond the gate you walk along the path, keeping left until you see a big patch of green grass.
The walk is all downhill and tarred so the walk to the clearing is easy if you’ve got a pram, scooter or bike in tow, the only problem is the walk back up the hill which may see you carrying your children, picnic goods and bike or scooter.
Additional Information on the Gardens
The whole Garden is open from 8am to 5pm.
Make sure you keep an eye on the time if you are visiting in the afternoon as you do not want to get locked in.
Toddlers and Tadpoles
If you’re interested in visiting the Ku-ring-gai Wildflower garden with your kids in a more structured manner you could sign up for Toddlers and Tadpoles. The program runs on Wednesdays and Thursdays during term time from 10am – 11:30am. Toddlers and Tadpoles is morning play group focused on helping kids discover more about the bushland. To sign or get more information on the cost and the programme here is a link to the Toddlers and Tadpoles section of the Council’s website.
If you want to check out other places in the area – have a look at the following: