For a lovely little park suitable for under 5s, visit Empire Park in Bar Beach for a fun play. It can be a challenge finding parks for little ones so it’s lovely that this park is geared to them. (For older kids, visit nearby Dixon Park Beach Playground which features more age-appropriate playground equipment.)
At Empire Park, there’s modern play equipment with a small slide and easily navigable stairs for toddlers. There’s a few wobblies including a cute sailboat themed wobbly on which little ones can hang on to the sail and bounce.
For older kids, there’s a climbing net and telescope. There’s also two swings (regular and baby) as well as a track around the playground perfect for bikes and scooters.
WARNING: Watch out for the spinning blue chair. It looks harmless enough but once it starts to go fast and the momentum kicks in, some kids will scream to get off as it spins fast. (We had a go – lots of fun but makes you feel a bit queasy!)
Empire Park has plenty of shade and because it is in a hollow facing north, the hill generally blocks southerlies.
If you feel like kicking a ball around, the oval is next to the park. If it’s tennis you prefer, there are courts next door and also a tennis wall to practice your hitting. Just bring a racquet and some balls.
Address: Corner Bar Beach Avenue and Kilgour Avenue, Bar Beach
Ideal For: Toddlers, Preschoolers
Public Toilets: Next to the park
Water Fountain: Couldn’t see one at the park but a few up at Bar Beach
Picnic Facilities: A few seats and plenty of room for picnic blankets
Café Nearby: Swell Kiosk at Bar Beach, Bar Beach Bowlo and many others in Darby Street or at The Junction.
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Started in late 2012 by a local mum, Newy with Kids has grown into a thriving go-to family guide for the Newcastle, Lake Macquarie & Hunter region. Parents visit the Newy with Kids website to find things to do with babies, kids and teens. Whether it’s local attractions, upcoming events, kids eat free, school holiday activities or birthday party ideas, Newy with Kids is the best website for local parents to find local kid-friendly activities and information 24/7.