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Nature Play

What is Nature Play

Nature Play simply means playing in nature! It’s fun to do and is great for kids - cognitive, social and emotional development are all shown to be greatly enhanced by time spent in nature. 

Rolling down hills, hiding behind bushes, rock-hopping, looking for bugs and getting muddy are all examples of nature play. 

We have lots of parks and reserves in Merri-bek where you can enjoy playing in nature.

Things to know before you go

Merri-bek is on the traditional lands of the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung people, and the cultural heritage of the lands and waterways is significant.

Find out about the place you are visiting and what you can expect to find there using our Find a Park search.

Look at the weather forecast before you go and be prepared with suitable clothing, footwear, supplies and equipment.

Take only memories, leave only footprints

Use photos, drawings or a nature journal to take home your memories rather than collecting a souvenir. 

Leave the site as you found it - moving logs, rocks or plant material disturbs the animals who have made homes there.

Respect the vegetation and avoid trampling and pulling at plants.  Our landscapes are often revegetated through the hard work of volunteers so please respect their efforts and avoid playing in areas where new plants are establishing.

Keep it wild

Observe wildlife from a distance as they may become frightened if you get to close, and please let animals find their own food – it is healthier for them!

Take all your rubbish, including food scraps home with you for disposal. Keep our parks clean for everyone to enjoy.

Places for Nature Play in Merri-bek


Brunswick East

Brunswick West


  • Tate Reserve, 11 Grant Street Coburg
  • Egan Reserve, 145 Rennie Street Coburg
  • Connolly Avenue Reserve, Connolly Avenue Coburg
  • Coburg Lake Reserve

Coburg North


Fitzroy North

  • Merri Creek Reserve, 24 Ida Street Fitzroy North


Oak Park

Pascoe Vale

  • Herbert Street Reserve, Herbert Street Pascoe Vale
  • KW Joyce Reserve, 31 Cornwall Road Pascoe Vale
  • Gavin Park, connects to KW Joyce Reserve

Pascoe Vale South

Merri-bek Nature Explorer Passport

The Merri-bek Nature Explorer Passport is an activity book to encourage preschool aged kids and their families to spend time playing in nature.  You can find out more here.