Goolwa Nature Playground | Fun by the River | Playground Review

goolwa nature park poles

Goolwa Nature Playground Review

Bristow Smith Reserve | Barrage Road, Goolwa South

by Baby & Toddler Destinations Adelaide

The lovely ladies of Baby & Toddler Destinations Adelaide have written another fantastic review – this time for the great new Nature Playground down at Goolwa. See what they have to say here…….

Great, just great!

We have been to around 600 destinations over the last 2 years (only 147 have made it to our page) and there are very few times that my twins have begged us to take them back to a particular park. For us, that just confirms what we thought, awesome!!

In all honesty, it is designed for kids and not babies and there are some clear things to prepare for (such as it is not enclosed on the river side) but there is so much to do and see, it is quite amazing. If you are up for staying a bit closer than normal, getting sandy and wet, then there is plenty to entertain even youngest of babies.

goolwa nature park steps

This sculpture nature play space was opened recently and is nothing short of great, I believe it cost over $600,000.

It has a beautiful hand crafted 14ft boat as its major highlight and so many different animal sculptures to look at, touch and climb on. For us the boat, water, musical instruments and sculptures made for an absolutely fantastic hot Sunday afternoon.

Captain of the great new boat!

Captain of the great new boat!

goolwa nature park boat

Well that's one way to climb aboard!

Well that’s one way to climb aboard!



goolwa nature park tree

Why is it great?

  • 14ft Boat with easy climbing frame off one side, tunnel through the middle and working steering wheel.
  • Wonderful wooden sculpture at entrance with heaps of Aussie animals and birds and cute little seat.
  • Xylophone and neighbouring crocodile sculpture (love love love).
  • Swan Drums
  • Hammock Swing
  • Water wheel and tray (my boy could turn it himself).
  • Gentle slide on climbing hill (we did not go near as it was 38C and very busy).
  • Climbing hill to little bridge.
  • Art work of animals and fish everywhere.
  • Stacks of older kid equipment that was not easy to access by my little people.
  • River Murray!!! We had a ball in the river but I was a little stressed as I have lived on the river before and my twins have no fear.
  • Toilets
  • Shaded BBQ areas x 2.
  • Enclosed at the road side with fence.
  • Wooden log circle sculpture.
Water Play!

Water Play!

What an awesome Xylophone!

What an awesome Xylophone!

Lots of opportunities to make music :-)

Lots of opportunities to make music ­čÖé


Goolwa Nature Park croc


  • Lack of shade (it is as exposed as a day at the beach so it is necessary to plan for this).
  • Open water – the river is dangerous!! Please, please watch your babies and toddlers and enjoy it with them.


goolwa nature park water

We hope that you love this play space as much as us.

A little bit about Goolwa: it is a historic river port on the Fleurieu Peninsula near the Murray River mouth on Lake Alexandrina, about 89km south of Adelaide, 19km from Victor Harbor (about an hour drive from Adelaide). It’s the gateway to the Coorong National Park and is joined by a bridge to Hindmarsh Island.

Read the original review on Baby & Toddler Destinations Adelaide’s Facebook page here.

The view of the playground from the top of the boat

The view of the playground from the top of the boat

goolwa nature park bbq

The Bristow Smith Reserve Nature Playspace was opened in December 2015. The $600,000 playspace was jointly funded by the Department of Planning, Transport & Infrastructure and the Alexandrina Council. See the Alexandrina Council website here for more information.

Click here for all the best playgrounds for toddlers

See our top parks & playgrounds around Adelaide here.

To see the original review visit the Baby and Toddler Desinations Adelaide Facebook page.

What:      Goolwa Nature Playground

When:     Anytime

Where:    Bristow Smith Reserve | Barrage Road, Goolwa South

Who:        Babies and up!

At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.

Image Source: All photos by Baby and Toddler Destinations Adelaide.


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