Family fun abounds in Ipswich
There's fun for the whole family in Ipswich, whether you're after awesome parks and playgrounds or amazing animal encounters. With school holidays just around the corner, you and the kids will be inspired by Ipswich's family-friendly adventures.
Ipswich has some of the most incredible parks for kids in South East Queensland. Water parks, modern playground equipment, skate parks, fitness circuits, sports fields, Australian wildlife and much more await kids of all ages. Read on for a list of the top 10.
Robelle Domain is arguably one of the most impressive parks in the Ipswich region. Spread over a massive 24 hectares, it contains everything from a water park, cafes, cycling tracks, walking tracks and play equipment including swings, seesaws and climbing equipment. The water park includes a zero-depth play area with a 700-litre tipping bucket and jet sprays. The star attraction is the Orion Lagoon, covering an area of 3.5km with areas suitable for children of all ages. Around the parklands are barbecues, sheltered picnic benches and large grassy areas.
Providence Splash' n' Play
Ripley's waterpark Splash'n'Play is one of the ultimate kids' adventure playgrounds. Shallow streams meandering through various water sprayers and water foundations are perfect for the little ones. Older children will love running through the water shooters and aqua arch. The playground has a dedicated area for smaller children, including nets, swings, seesaw and climbing equipment. Older children are going to love the enormous fort that is seven metres off the ground.
Plane crazy kids will love flying into Lobley Park with its aeronautical themed playground. The park includes a RAAF Cargo Plane with a mock cockpit and a control tower complete with x-ray machine and radar screen. Other playground equipment includes swings, climbing equipment, a dedicated outdoor story area as well as many kilometres of pathways for kids to ride bikes and scooters.
Queens Park is one of the oldest parks in Ipswich and offers a wonderland of free activities including a kids' playground, a Japanese garden, environmental education centre, café and gorgeous leafy gardens for a picnic. The kids will adore visiting a range of Australian wildlife at Ipswich Nature Centre, including kangaroos, wombats, goats, lizards, snakes, birds and emus. The various separate playground areas throughout Queens Park are suitable for children of all ages.
Bob Gamble Park
Bob Gamble Park, which is the official name given to stage two of the River Heart Parklands, is an absolute paradise for kids of all ages. The River Heart Parklands is home to one of several free water parks throughout Ipswich. The park has two main water play areas, one containing several troughs which feed water into a maze of shallow streams meandering through the stepping stones, ideal for exploring toddlers. The other water area has numerous spouts shooting water out at varying lengths, perfect for the older kids. This Ipswich water park also has ultra-modern play equipment including a 25-metre flying fox, a huge climbing frame with massive slide, sand diggers, swings and a swing log for multiple kids to enjoy at once.
The kids will love Leichhardt Park. It has two separate playground areas, one suited to younger children and the other targeted at older kids. The junior area is fully fenced and includes playground equipment such as a slide, swings, sand diggers and climbing equipment. The site has plenty of paths for nippers to ride bikes and scooters. In the older kids' area, there is a flying fox and climbing equipment. This area also has a large sports field to kick a ball around.
Henry Lawson Bicentennial Park
Fancy a Sunday drive? Henry Lawson Bicentennial Park is located 12 kilometres west of the Ipswich CBD in the small town of Walloon. Families can have a barbecue lunch at the park or enjoy a pub lunch at the traditional country-style Walloon Saloon. The park has excellent facilities for toddlers through to pre-teens with modern playground equipment including a sway fun glider, spring platform, oodle swing, omni spinner, climbing dome, fort, slide and swings. For the older children, there is a skate bowl, basketball court and several kilometres of pathways for bike and scooter riding.
Out of all the Rosewood parks, Johnston Park is perfect for younger children. Located under beautiful large shady trees, the playground is fully fenced and includes a small fort with multiple slides, flying fox, train and swings. There are plenty of park benches throughout the playground for parents to rest whilst supervising the kids.
Sutton Park is a fantastic family park for kids of all ages. The young kids are going to love the miniature roadway, complete with traffic lights, stop signs, roundabouts and pedestrian crossing. Beyond the miniature system of roads, there are several kilometres of bike paths for the older children to ride around on. Sutton Park has a great partially-shaded modern playground with swings, seesaws, a flying fox, monkey bars, and fort complete with slide. For the teenagers, there is a good-sized skate bowl and basketball court. Adults and kids alike will love the new CrossFit facility – the first of its kind in Australia.
Joseph Brady Park
Located in beautiful countryside by the banks of the Brisbane River is the fantastic Joseph Brady Park. This Barellan Point park is one for the families who love outdoor activities. Older kids will love the climbing dome and rock climbing wall, while the younger kids will love role-playing in the pirate ship fort complete with a slide as well as seesaws, swings and spinners. The park has an access point for your canoe or kayak, and you can fish right from the river banks.
Awesome animal encounters
There's nothing like an animal encounter to captivate the kids. Ipswich has several perfect places where you can find some furry friends. Read on for a list of popular spots.
Haigslea Ewe Nique Hobby Farm
Children will love this charming hobby farm, home to sheep, lambs, alpacas, chickens, goats and geese. You and the kids can get up close and personal, pat and feed the animals. Hungry tums? Haigslea Ewe Nique Hobby Farm has a coffee shop and a brand new deck available selling hot and cold drinks as well as homemade cakes, slices, muffins and other snacks.
The Llama Farm
Take a llama for a walk, feed and pet them plus pose for a Llama selfie or two at The Llama Farm. With the largest herd of llamas in Queensland, The Llama Farm is also home to donkeys, goats, miniature ponies, peacocks, turkeys, guinea fowl and two maremmas. Tours are available on weekends and school holidays by appointment. They are also running a Little Llama Farmers school holiday program.
Summer Land Camels
Kids will adore a visit to Australia's largest wild camel training centre and dairy. Meet the camels and feed them, book a camel ride or a farm tour for a behind the scenes look. Summer Land Camels has an onsite café and camel milk products available including delectable cheese and gelato plus a range of all-natural camel-milk skincare said to hold significant rejuvenating properties.
Naughty Little Kids
Naughty kids will turn nice during a visit to this working farm. With 70 goats and 40 kids, it is open on weekends for tours and cheese-making demonstrations. Taste the award-winning goats' cheese, straight from the farm, and mouth-watering gelato. Naughty Little Kids is open on Sundays (bookings essential). Come and feed the goats - plus give them a cuddle.
Ipswich Nature Centre
This one is right in the heart of Ipswich. The Ipswich Nature Centre in Queens Park is home to a range of native Australian animals including dingoes, wallabies and bilbies as well as cute farm animals. Enjoy walking around the shady boardwalks for free, or book an Animal Encounter during school holidays or Saturdays for groups of eight or more.
Extend your stay in Ipswich by booking into the recently-opened Ivory's Rock campground. Nature is your friend at this 600-hectare property, backing onto Flinders-Goolman Conservation Estate including Flinders Peak and the Ipswich-Boonah Trail.
Believed to be the first private campground to open in Queensland in 20 years, the property is a beautiful place for putting up a tent or parking a caravan. Surrounded by native bushland, kids will love looking out for hopping wallabies and spotting koalas. Adults will enjoy creature comforts such as powered sites, laundry facilities, Wi-Fi and a number of private bathrooms.
Along with camping and caravan sites, Ivory's Rock also offers air-conditioned twin bunkhouses. Located just off the main road between Ipswich and Boonah, the campground makes an ideal base for drives around the Ipswich and Scenic Rim regions.
You can book a campsite now at www.ivorysrock.org.au