Glenelg is one of Adelaide’s most popular beach-side suburbs and tourist destinations well known for its spectacular New Year’s Eve fireworks, several hotels, quality restaurants and marina.
Located directly in front of Glenelg Town Hall, the City of Holdfast Bay Council officially opened an incredible $1.3 million natural play space on the Glenelg foreshore overlooking the jetty and beach today.
Thanks to What’s On In Adelaide, we sent our Adelaide parenting writer Kim and her 2yo son Julian to give the new Glenelg Foreshore Playground a run for all of its $1.3 million before the fences came down and she’s given us her verdict.
It’s all about bringing the hills to the beach with this awesome playground and connecting kids with nature. There is plenty of equipment to encourage physical, cognitive, social and emotional development as kids explore the grounds with running, jumping, spinning, climbing, rolling, hanging, balancing, splashing, touching, seeing, smelling and hearing (and tasting if they drink from the water spouts!).
The hero of the playground was of course Mega Slide Mountain*, closely followed by Water Valley*, a pebble river including a stop dam and water spouts, and in-ground trampolines I like to call “Hell yeah I love this place”.
Water Valley was super close to taking out the number one spot though. Push the water release button and water pumps out into the pebble river scattered with cute mosaic sea creatures, winds its way through the water dam and into the huge sandpit with water spouts that shoot high into the air.
There is also plenty of other cool equipment like a climbing tunnel and dome, super spinny cool spin thing, rope hammock swing and climbing tower, rock climbing wall, steel drums, grass tunnel, sandpit, cubby house, swinging monkey bars, rubber suspension bridge, rope balance beam, tree branch and stump balance maze and steps, boardwalk and interactive “salty dog” bench seat.
Although it is not appropriate for children with limited mobility, they are able to access the water release via the boardwalk for Water Valley sending water down the pebble river to the spouts, allowing them some interaction and participation in play with children around them.
There is plenty of shade thrown over the playground in the morning from the Glenelg Surf Life Saving Club, and few big palm trees assist with shade across the day but be sure to bring plenty of sunscreen and wear hats because you are still out in the elements.
Parents are well catered for with plenty of seating along concrete benches and lawns encircling the play area, as well as grabbing coffee and a bite to eat from the newly renovated Boomers Diner. Meg the owner is just gorgeous and her restaurant will have all your hangry needs covered. Their ingredients and products are sourced locally and made right here in South Australia (hand cut chips and house made nuggets anyone?), the menu is friendly to gluten intolerance and breastfeeding mums are welcome.
Public toilet and baby change room facilities are located nearby and can be found between the surf lifesaving club and The Beach House. It has five stalls and one disability cubicle; I personally don’t believe the disability cubicle is sufficient for those who are completely immobile as it’s only slightly larger than a normal toilet. The baby change facilities are ok, with a bench seat to keep your belongings off the floor and a change table that folds out from the wall. The automatic hand wash stations are pretty cool.
Car parking is ticketed street parking along Jetty Road, or 2 hour limited free street parking in the back streets if you’re lucky enough to get a park.
In the next stage of development there are plans to build a skate park to cater for the tweens and teens. I can’t wait to see this next part of the development; it will keep the entire family entertained.
*names not official. Kim made them up herself!