Royal Park, Parkville

Located only 4kms from Melbourne’s CDB, Royal Park in Parkville is a hidden gem and a wonderful park to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. Situated on land of importance to the people of the Eastern Kulin Nation, Royal Park is a valuable recreation place for people but it is also a significant biodiversity site and provides opportunities for research activities into its flora and fauna for biological scientists and students.

Royal Park was the site of a major Australian military camp and training ground during the First World War (1914 to 1918). It was redesigned in 1984 and now includes stretches of open grass with areas of lightly timbered eucalypt forest, sports grounds, wetlands, a native garden, dog off leash area and Nature Play at Royal Park, an award-winning a nature-based play space. Located at Royal Park’s south-east corner, the Nature Play Park is an incredible play space which has a water play area with hand pumps, water sprays and channels to control the flow of water down to the sandpit below. Although you could easily spend a day there, make sure you go and explore the actual bushland .

Read more about the history of Royal Park’s here.


      1. Have a picnic and explore the Australian native garden
      2. Walk, run or cycle along the many footpaths and Capital City Trail
      3. Have a play at the Royal Park Nature Play Playground (don’t forget to roll down the grassy hill!)
      4. Enjoy some yoga in the park or do a mindfulness scavenger hunt
      5. Fly a kite in the wide open space and better still, make your own (tutorial here)


Royal Park differs from most parks within the City of Melbourne in that its vegetation is almost exclusively Australian native. Visit the Australian Native Garden where you’ll find large varieties of native grasses such as Kangaroo Grass, Red-leg Grass, Silky Blue Grass, Windmill Grass, Weeping Grass and several species of Wallaby Grass and Spear Grass.

Trin Warren Tam-boore (Bellbird Waterhole) is a wetland located at the northwest corner of Royal Park and part of the Moonee Ponds Creek catchment.

Royal Park has five different ecosystems offering an unusually great biodiversity of plants and insects. It is rich in insects, with over 5000 species identified to date.

Visit Friends of Royal Park here for more information about the local flora and fauna

References: https://www.melbourne.vic.gov.au/community/parks-open-spaces/major-parks-gardens/Pages/royal-park.aspx

Eco Explorers runs kids nature programs at Royal Park in Parkville. Our Parkville Bush Kindy Kids program runs on Tuesdays in 2023. Find out more or register your interest here.

Royal Park nature play

Royal park Melbourne with kids

Nature parks with kids Parkville

Nature parks with kids Royal park

Royal Park with kids

Nature parks with kids Melbourne