Belair National Park (formerly known as Belair Recreation Park) is a protected area located at Belair in South Australia (Australia), 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) south of Adelaide city centre and which covers an area of 835 hectares (2,060 acres). It was proclaimed in 1891 and was the first national park in South Australia, second in Australia (after Sydney's Royal National Park which was proclaimed in 1879) and the tenth in the world.The national park lies within the Adelaide Hills and Mitcham council area, and forms part of a chain of protected areas located along the Adelaide Hills Face Zone. The National Park is administered by the State Government's Department for Environment and Water.(DEW)
The Belair National Park has excellent recreation and social facilities within an outdoor environment. There are many areas of interest within the park, including Old Government House, "State Flora", Playford Lake and the Adventure Playground. It has numerous tennis courts and ovals, and has walking, bike and horse-riding trails. The national park has an outstanding presentation of the State’s native fauna, attracting visitors, showcasing the State’s park system and contributing to the community awareness of the natural environment. Some species of fauna commonly encountered in the national park include the koalas, kangaroos, emus, echidnas and many birds.
"Welcome friend and join me for the mists of dawn are cold. Sit, rest yourself by my fire and I will tell you my story. Walk with me, as we step back in time. Through the years to the dawns of previous days. Come and I will reveal to you my rich and colourful history. I will share with you the beauty of my land and its magic. Feel my pulse and rhythm; be caught up in my magic. See the episodes of my life both happy and tragic. I have had many visitors and all have left their mark. As you today friend have become a part of me. For I am Belair and I am this land. My future and past you hold in your hands."
From the links on the left you will be able to view the Park Brochure and a detailed map of the Park. A link to Google Maps show it's location and how to get there.
Belair Park Map
Our Belair insider shares some top tips about SA’s first national park.
Boasting a range of attractions including Old Government House, State Flora and the adventure playground, Belair National Park has been a favourite with South Australians for generations.
Located just 25 minutes from Adelaide’s city centre, the park is an ideal day out for families, tourists and nature lovers alike, with mountain bike trails, barbeque and sporting facilities, and the chance to see wild kangaroos, koalas, kookaburras and endangered bandicoots along easily accessible trails.
Spring is the perfect time to rediscover this special park and explore some of its best kept secrets.
Senior Ranger Donna Ferschl shares her insider tips on some hidden treasures to discover on your next visit.
Starting at the World War I memorial cherry plantation, this short walk follows a boardwalk and path through native bushland where you are sure to spot plenty of koalas and maybe even a bandicoot. The plantation of Japanese cherry trees was once one of the most important WWI memorials in Australia. The remaining trees are a reminder of the past and those they honour. The walk ends at a dramatic avenue of tall sequoias, commemorating Australian and American forces that served in WWII and Korea. Early spring is the perfect time of year to explore the RSL Walk and see the cherry trees in full bloom.
This well-hidden cave surrounded by native bushland was dug out of the rock-face as part of works to build the Adelaide to Melbourne railway line that runs through the park. With the recent heavy rains, you might be lucky enough to see the waterfall flowing over the entrance to the ‘amphitheatre’. From Karka Picnic Ground, follow the path from the car park until you see a narrow track on the right-hand side. Amphitheatre Rock is a short walk up the track.
Children and adults alike enjoy listening to the sounds echo as they travel through this long, dark tunnel. It is also the gateway to a large section of the park, as it is the only safe place to cross under the railway line. Follow the signs and park at the Pines, and then walk along Echo Track to Echo Tunnel, and beyond to the rest of the park.
During winter and following heavy rains, the flowing creeks create two spectacular waterfalls. The lower waterfall is just a short walk beyond Echo Tunnel and a special boardwalk has been created to provide great views of the upper waterfall. These waterfalls don’t run all year, but are worth a visit for their beautiful setting in any season. Either starting at Old Government House or the Pines, follow the Waterfall Hike to explore these hidden treasures.
Discover the beautiful views across the Adelaide Plains and down to the sea along Queen Jubilee Drive. Either park near Old Government House to start uphill, or walk down from Saddle Hill, keeping a look out for koalas and emus on the way. There is a bench half way along the track where you can sit and admire the scenery. Insider tip: The views are spectacular at sunset, but remember to find out when the gates close so park outside Gate 13 on Sheoak Road and walk down to enjoy this beautiful site.
Wood Duck Dawdle - A short circuit around Playford Lake.
Lorikeet Loop Walk - A 3 km circuit walk from the main car park to the Adventure Playground.
Valley Loop Walk - A 3 km circuit walk to Long Gully.
Microcarpa Walk - A 4 km circuit departing from Main carpark.
Waterfall Hike - The national park 's best walk. A 6.5 km circuit that visits the park's waterfalls and travels to the higher areas away from the recreation areas.
Yurrebilla Trail - The first 5 km of the Yurrebilla Trail is in the national park . It begins at the Belair railway station and continues toward the Lower Waterfall before departing the park at the Sheoak Road boundary.
Adventure Loop Trail - A lovely article by Jodie Vidakovic, which was first published in In Daily on Friday 15th December describes the walking trail and is linked here .
From the links on the below you will be able to view a selection of Park flowers by Jennifer Skinner. Further flowers may be seen in the Photos section
There are many native animals to see in Belair National Park. These have been well described in a monthly-walk leaflet prepared by Barbara and Alan Raine in August 2018.
ORCHID COLLECTING and the LAW
Orchids are protected under the law. No part of an orchid can be taken from the bush without a legitimate reason AND a permit – only take photographs or memories.
To report any suspected removal of orchids, contact Investigation and Compliance Unit (DEW)
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