Entertaining kids of varying ages can sometimes seem impossible. When your youngest is having the time of their life, your oldest is bored out of their brain and yet the places where your eldest child is amused are so rarely suitable for your youngest child to go.
This is one of those magical days that you can customise depending on the ages of your children and keep everyone happy at *gasp* the SAME time!
As Kirrawee locals, we were excited when the “Brick Pit” finally transformed into what we’ve come to know as South Village- a shopping centre and dining precinct that is super welcoming of families. From toddler sensory play mornings to pop-up mini-golf and Halloween shows, they’re always offering different kinds of activities for the kiddies, and you can even sign up to their e-newsletter for families, Together & Co, so you don’t miss out on what’s coming next.
They recently launched Tots Together Tuesday, which is a coffee catch-up where Mums, Dads, Grandparents and Carers, can meet every Tuesday to celebrate and share in the ups and downs of parenting, while grabbing a free coffee from Christopher’s Cake Shop, Cooperfield or Tamping Ground.
We grabbed our free coffee from Tamping Ground and my daughter played on the indoor playground for a little while before we decided to head outside to…
Biddy Giles Playground
One staple of entertainment at South Village though is, of course, the outside playground- Biddy Giles Playground and this is where we like to start our day out in South Kirrawee.
Of all the playgrounds that we have visited it remains one of the best to occupy kids of all ages, right up to teens. There are infant swings and small slides for the very young, mid-sized equipment, climbing poles, slides, swings and balance beams for the preschoolers, a large climbing net, handball courts and flying fox for the primary school kids and even a basketball hoop and ping pong tables suitable for teens.
You’ve also got the option of taking bikes, skateboards and scooters so that everyone can ride at their own speed around the large track beside the playground- and you can even run alongside them if it’s the only way you’re likely to squeeze in some exercise that day!
You can find our full review and more photos of Biddy Giles Playground here.
When everyone’s worked up an appetite you can simply head across the road into the dining precinct, where you’ll be spoilt for choice.
For a real treat though, we settled on having some lunch at…
Cooperfield is directly opposite Biddy Giles playground. We grabbed a table by the smaller indoor playground, which is the perfect place to spot if you’ve got toddlers who aren’t particularly keen on cafes, but other older kids who are happy to sit and enjoy a nice meal with you. It’s also sheltered from the wind. Sometimes we visit Cooperfield just for coffee and milkshakes but their food really is exceptional.
On this occasion my parents were visiting and treated us to lunch. Between us, the adults ordered the Southern chicken breast burger, Corn and zucchini fritters and Eggs benedict and the kids had salt and pepper squid and jam on toast. To be honest, most of us had trouble choosing as everything on the menu sounds delicious (and many of the dishes are healthy too!) The meals came out quickly, serving sizes were excellent and there wasn’t a single complaint from the table. It is 5-star cafe food.
And on the days that you don’t want to spend much on lunch, there are cheaper alternatives like Umaya sushi, Joe Junior or Guzman Y Gomez. You can take a picnic of your own to enjoy in the park, or quickly put one together by grabbing some fruits, rolls, cheeses and deli meats from Panetta Mercato, Coles or Aldi right inside the shopping centre. Like I said- spoilt for choice!
For little kids that might be enough action for one day. If they’ve still got some energy left in the tank (and you really want them to sleep well tonight) or your with older kids, then your day out can continue at…
Savilles Creek Loop is in the Royal National Park, but very easy to get to. It runs behind South Kirrawee, Sutherland and Loftus. If you’ve been at South Village you’ll need to jump back in the car for just a few minutes. Drive and park where Gore Ave meets Gore Lane. You’ll see a small section of bush with an obvious sign that says “Savilles Creek Bushcare Group” and a clear entry.
The trickiest part of this walk is actually crossing the creek at the entry. Though the creek is only small and usually not difficult to cross, particularly if we’ve recently had rain, you’ll need to take extra care helping little kids across. Once you’re across the creek, for an easy walk with kids simply turn right and walk along the track for about 10 minutes until you reach a picturesque waterfall. This is a great spot to stop and soak in the scenery and then you can turn back.
Alternatively, if you’re in the mood for a longer walk and everyone with you is old enough and happy enough to continue, you can follow the Savilles Creek loop all the way back to where you started from. The area is fairly well signed and you won’t lose phone reception so you needn’t worry about getting lost. It also joins up to the Temptation Creek Trail if you’re looking for a nice big trail run!
What else is there to do in South Kirrawee with kids?
If your kids aren’t ready to go home yet, it’s pretty easy to spend some time wandering the Oak Road shops in Kirrawee. We like to look at the birds, rabbits, guinea pigs at Kirrawee Pic-a-Pet, browse the decorations and party supplies at House of Party or grab a smoothie from Smooth Operator. You can also find more playgrounds in South Kirrawee at Nyrang Place and Betham Place.
Want to head somewhere else? You can find all our “A day out in…” the Shire with kids articles here.