A fabulous new playground in Lane Cove opened in March 2019 and it’s truly designed for everyone… from walkers to wheelies, the hearing or sight impaired, and everyone (or anyone!) who loves to play. Wheelchair user Katey Chesterton went along and checked it out. We loved it when it first opened, but we love it even more now that there’s a coffee cart there too!
Mindaire Park at Lane Cove is the impressive first stage of a huge all-abilities park planned for the site on the corner of Kullah Parade and Mindarie St. It’s designed for people of all walks of life and different abilities…so as soon as they announced stage one was ready and open, my sister and her children joined me for a trip there to try it out!
As a wheelchair user, I absolutely loved visiting Mindarie Park. The equipment is designed for everyone to be able to play side-by-side, and even the slippery dips and climbing structures are accessible with wide ramps up to the top, that easily fit my set of wheels (plus left plenty of space for kids to pass by either side- no gridlocks here!).
I’ve been to many parks with my energetic three-year-old niece in the past, but at Mindarie, for the first time, I was able to climb to the top of the slides by her side. For the first time I was able to follow her happily running up the ramp instead of watching her from on the ground, and we could go down the slides together. That meant a lot to me and I’m sure it would for many families with disabled children or family members.
Because of the well-considered design, the park is great for everyone. The setting is flat, and the ground is covered with softfall, so my newly crawling nephew had a ball crossing under the bridges and pulling himself up to stand on different equipment. It’s also kitted out in bright colours to assist perception for low-vision visitors (and because it looks awesome too, of course). There’s a set of traditional swings as well as a carriage-style swing setup for the differently-abled. The hearing impaired or the musically-inclined have a set of music makers and noisemakers. There’s a sandpit catering to little diggers, kids who love to explore different consistencies and those who may be sight-impaired and prefer touching textures in their play.
The two biggest drawcards on the day we visited were, one, the mazes of wide ramps that take kids up to the top of multiple slides. It’s a little like a skywalk over the playground, so the kids can go from slide to slide va the series of connected ramps. Te other was the ‘boat’ experience, which is a white-water-raft inspired boat set over water that kids and adults can climb on to and rock so you feel like you’re sailing- a true sensory experience!
When you visit, try to aim for a slower part of the day as, although roomy, the park can be quite busy. There is street parking with limited disabled parking spots but it may be hard to find a park and the area is quite hilly. As well, surrounding streets are very narrow so there may be some tight squeezes driving in! There’s not a lot of coffee close by, so BYO picnic food and drink, or head over to Lane Cove Village when you’ve worked up an appetite.
- Elevated walkways and ramps connecting the slides (all wheelchair accessible)
- ‘Sway Fun’ boat ride experience
- Music makers and noisemakers for sound-stimulated kids including drums and gongs
- Full-body support swings and traditional swings
- A sandpit with machine-like diggers for play
- Enclosed tunnel slides and open slides, climbing towers and tunnels
- Disabled parking area directly out front (limited space)
- Fully fenced and enclosed
- Water fountains
- BBQ area and picnic tables
- Seating areas and undercover areas
- Unisex accessible toilets (outside fenceline down a short path) with baby changing table
- Coffee cart is usually there for locally roasted coffee (Artarmon), snacks and cold drinks. They are open 9am-3pm on weekends, and 9am-12pm during the school holidays.
Essential Details: Mindarie Park
- Where: 18A Mindarie Street Lane Cove (Corner of Kullah Parade)
- More info: Lane Cove Council
Want more parks to explore, family-friendly dining and fun attractions? Browse our dedicated section in Out & About.