Jubilee Park, by the Onkaparinga River in Port Noarlunga, is without doubt, the best playground in the south of Adelaide.
A maze of wonderful wooden constructions consisting of multiple layers and levels for kids of all ages. There is no limit to the imagination with this playground – play, climb, explore, hide, slide, swing…the fun and games are endless.
The story of how this playground was built is wonderful. The sign at the entrance (pictured above) says that it was built with love in 2002 – and it really was. The local community combined their efforts to create this adventure playground for local families – they raised the money, and then volunteers built the wooden structures in just a week. All around the playground you’ll see plaques of the local businesses who have contributed. It’s worth the drive even if you live on the other side of the city.
The playground is maintained by the City of Onkaparinga and has had a few upgrades. One of the most exciting things to be installed is the dual swing pictured below. The first of its kind in Adelaide, it allows a parent to sit and swing together with a baby or small child. You could also swing a baby and an older child at the same time.
It means that instead of pushing them from behind, you can see their face and enjoy the ride too. An older child could also swing together with a baby.
The other main attraction is the huge fort style castle, and on the day we visited, and no doubt repeated every day, children were everywhere running and laughing as they played chasey or hide n seek amongst the logs.
There is a wooden ship docked along one side of the fort to inspire little pirates, and a maze of wooden pathways leading in and out, and up and down the whole structure. Steps and ladders lead to hidden sections with poles and slippery dips to take you back down to ground level once again. The materials are sturdy and the entire playground is fully fenced – a necessity when so close to the Onkaparinga River and with the main road not too far away.
There are so many features in this playground it’s hard to name them all, but they include swings, monkey bars, bridges, tunnels, look outs, a lighthouse, open and enclosed slides and loads of climbing equipment. Safety aspects include the child-safe gates and the ground cover is a combination of rubber and bark chips.
Inside the wooden playground there are shaded places to sit, underneath your own turret.
There is a section designed for children aged 2 to 5 years that isn’t as high and includes smaller structures, games and some clever musical chimes.
Due to an arson attack in 2011, the playground received some major repairs and the design pays tribute to the fire fighters who fought the blaze. There’s a fire station, a fabulous bright red fire truck, toy bell and a fire pole.
Surrounding the playground are numerous picnic tables, shelters, BBQs and large grass areas to kick the footy, have a hit of cricket or fly a kite. The public toilets are a short walk away, the car park is alongside the playground, and the entire area has wheelchair access. There are walking and cycling tracks nearby too. An ice-cream van visits on the weekends.
There is another modern playground right outside the Wooden Fort playground, which you pass through to get to the public toilets. Here you will find more BBQs, picnic tables, shaded seating and another grassed area. In November 2016 new play equipment was introduced to this modern play area.
You won’t miss seeing the giant giraffe if you are driving past.
Port Noarlunga’s Jubilee Park is the perfect place to host a large family gathering, birthday party or any type of get-together where there are kids of different ages. Older children will love the fort style design of this park and little ones, well, they won’t want to leave!
The Jubilee Playground is maintained by the City of Onkaparinga.
What: Jubilee Park | Wooden Fort Adventure Playground | Onkaparinga Adventure Playground
When: All Year Round
Where: Saltfleet St, Port Noarlunga (see map)
Who: All Ages