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The Best Free Fun Splash Parks in Melbourne
Swimming Hole Heaven in Melbourne


 
Where are the best free fun splash parks in Melbourne? After road testing them all, here are my favourites for splashing, dashing, scooping and scooting, and best of all, it won't cost you a cent. All of these splash parks are located within the Melbourne Metropolitan Area, as defined by the Victorian State Government. I've listed my top seven in descending order below, with the full list including those outside of the top seven on Swimming Hole Heaven in Melbourne. Click on the title of each splash park, or the photo, to see the full guide to each splash park.

Number 7: Ian Potter Children's Garden in the Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne. The gardens contain several water features including a small splash pad with intermittent jets of water, a beehive fountain, and an artificial meandering stream that runs along the length of the lawn area. The lawn is kept in good condition considering the foot traffic from kids running here there and everywhere, and there is some shade available for picnics on a hot summer's day, if you arrive early. The only drawback is its popularity. The water features turn on and off throughout the day on an automatic timer. The pebbled stream running alongside the sandpit at the Ian Potter Childrens Garden Above: The pebbled stream running alongside the sandpit at the Ian Potter Children's Garden (Order this image, prints or photo gifts)

Number 6: Rockpool Waterway in the Cranbourne Botanic Gardens. This water feature is a wide, artificial stream paved with blocks of different heights.
It is great for cooling off your feet in the water, or on a really hot day, sitting yourself down in the shallow stream. The earthy and rusted metallic colours are striking, with an industrial feel that complements the surrounding gardens, which are wonderful to explore in their own right. The raised pavement stream at the Cranbourne Botanic Gardens Above: The raised pavement stream at the Cranbourne Botanic Gardens (Order this image, prints or photo gifts)

Number 5: Seville Water Play Park. This was the first free municipal splash park of its kind in Melbourne and it is still one of the best. The line of jets is powerful, so it is best for slightly older kids who have the common sense to not look into the jets just before they shoot up. Unlike those splash parks above, expect to get your whole body completely wet at this one. The line of fountains at Seville Water Play Park Above: The line of fountains at Seville Water Play Park (Order this image, prints or photo gifts)

Number 4: Royal Park Nature Play, which is located adjacent to the Royal Children's Hospital. The water features include mushroom pumps, an aqueduct that runs into a sandpit, and a small splash pad with several fountains. This park is one of the best in Melbourne for its variety of challenging activities, and the water features add a little extra to make it even more special. More so than other splash parks on this list, expect a crowd on hot days. The splash pad near the Royal Childrens Hospital at Royal Park Nature Play Above: The splash pad near the Royal Childrens Hospital at Royal Park Nature Play (Order this image, prints or photo gifts)

Number 3: Crocodile Park in Point Cook. A menacing crocodile starts off the spurt of water into a shallow trough, before the water travels along a meandering stream with artificial islands, and ends at a small splash pad around the corner. I really like the artwork involved in the crocodile and the design of the meandering stream, which rushes at different speeds through the island blocks. The spurting crocodile at Crocodile Park Above: The spurting crocodile at Crocodile Park (Order this image, prints or photo gifts)

Number 2: Booran Reserve in Glenhuntly. It is simple in design, but knows how to bring the fun, with one of the largest splash pads in Melbourne.
There are two sequences of jets that alternate, with the first spurting jets of water from fountains arranged in several rings, and the second gently spraying water from little sprinklers. Kids run from one to the other and back again in an endless cycle. Water from each then runs across an open area before being channeled into a catch drain. I have driven past here and seen the fountains operating of an evening until quite late, so it can be a great option for hot evenings. Some of the rings of jets at Booran Reserve Above: Some of the rings of jets at Booran Reserve (Order this image, prints or photo gifts)

Number 1: Riverwalk Werribee. After several years of visiting splash parks, this is still my number one in Melbourne for its size and its diversity of water features. Spread over two separate areas, the main area is huge, with hand pumps, jets of all kinds, sluice gates, aqueducts, a bamboo forest, squirting oranges, and a line of spraying rings. It is brightly coloured, and the action never seems to stop. There is even a backup area near the park entrance with a separate set of water jets if you want a calmer experience. Water pumps, squirting oranges and a wet bamboo forest at Riverwalk Werribee Above: Water pumps, squirting oranges and a wet bamboo forest at Riverwalk Werribee (Order this image, prints or photo gifts)

You can read about each of these free splash parks in more detail on Swimming Hole Heaven in Melbourne, including additional free splash parks and water features. You can also find links to splash parks in rural Victoria if you feel like a day trip with the kids. Don't forget to take plenty of dry towels, a few bandaids for the inevitable knee scrapes when the excitement overcomes them, plenty of sunscreen, and have heaps of fun.

© Brad Neal 2018. All rights reserved.