Fagan Park in Galston makes a wonderful day out for Sydney families. There’s heaps to see and do here plus great playgrounds too.
38-48 Arcadia Road, Galston 2159 NSW
Open: 7am until sunset (6:30pm during daylight savings)
by Mireia Garriga
If you asked me, what is the most beautiful place in or around the Hills District, I would say Fagan Park. Why? Because of the location and its gorgeous gardens.
If you asked me to suggest me a place to take lovely family photos, Fagan Park would be the answer.
Tucked far away from the bustling Sydney CBD, Fagan Park is one of those places that you could photograph again and again. In spring and autumn, the park is like a mosaic of bright colours. As soon as you reach Dural, it makes you feel like you’re in the countryside without having to drive lots of kilometers.
On the way, the children may spot some horses. And on the way back, you may like to stop to buy some fruit; there are some stalls along the road.
Fagan Park has so much to offer! This is why is always a good choice for a Sunday day trip or for spending a day with the children during school holidays.
For an ACTIVE day:
- Let the children burn some energy. The park has two playgrounds. The biggest one is near the Arcadia Road car park. The other one is smaller and it is near to the Carrs Road car park. (Both parks are away from the roads. This is only a reference in order to get orientated). The first one has amazing equipment for all ages, including a flying fox and a rope structure. Furthermore, there is a sandpit area that the little ones will love. The second playground is next to a spacious grassy area. There is also a big shelter that is ideal for reunions or birthday parties. This playground is not spectacular, but it would do the job to keep the kids entertained.
- Get your kids exercising with the scooters or the bikes. There are plenty of bicycle paths.
- Bring a kite or a ball, toss a Frisbee, have a game of cricket. Enjoy the open spaces!
- Go for a short bush walk.
My children loved so much the big playground that they did not want to leave! And, guess what? I saw some other parents having the same problem…
For a RELAXING day:
- Explore the Gardens of Many Nations. The Northern America garden transports you directly to “Vermont, USA” with the little cottage and the beautiful flowers. And the Mediterranean one is like a little piece of “Florence” in the middle of Australia. Other gardens that are worth to mention are the Dutch, the Japanese and the Chinese ones.
- Feed the ducks of the lagoon.
- Take your dog and go for a walk.
- Set up a mat and unwind.
- Grab a coffee or eat a snack from the coffee cart.
- Or simply, take some photos. When you have the chance to look the photographs back home, you will realise that they actually could be postcards of a souvenir shop.
During the week, Fagan Park is so peaceful and calm that you would forget that this amazing place is in Sydney. And, “yes”, the scenery is so inviting that even the children seem to slow down.
For an EDUCATIONAL day:
- Visit Netherby Cottage, the original Fagan family homestead, and the adjoining museum. They are open each Tuesday from 10am to 4pm and the second Sunday of every month from 1.30pm to 4pm.
- Netherby Cottage is like a trip back to the past. My daughters learnt that there was not always hot water, so they had to heat it in order to have a bath. And they also saw a pretty basic washing machine! Thir faces were showing surprise, trying to figure out if the bathroom and laundry room of the Netherby Cottage were real. Outside, there is an old water pump. It was lovely to see my daughters working so well together.
- The adjoining rural museum is full of old machinery, engines and vehicles from the last century. We saw some of the old tractors in action! They were very noisy and smelly, according to my daughters…So, I tried to explain to them the reason why now cars are not as noisy as the ones in the past. Certainly, they learnt something. I am not quite sure if they understood everything, but at least, my daughters realised that life was different a long time ago.
- Go to the Eco Garden and learn about sustainable gardening.
Self-guided and guided tours of the park including Netherby Homestead and the museums are available by appointment (call Council’s Customer Service on 9847 6853).
Fagan Park is also a great spot to have a picnic or enjoy a barbecue. It has numerous shelters and electric barbecues (that run with a $1 coin). The shelters can be hired as well as the Gardens of Many Nations.
Fagan Park – Practical Info
The park has several fountains and toilets. Also, there is a swing for children with disabilities.
Toilets: Toilets in the park
Nearest takeaway coffee: Yes, a coffee cart but only open at the weekends and everyday during school holiday. If the cart of Fagan Park is closed and you are very hungry, Greenshades Cafe is 5 minutes drive from Fagan Park, read about this cafe here.
Mum’s report: Fagan Park is one of the best parks of Sydney. It is definitively worth the visit. It has everything you need for a fantastic day out with children.
Bus stop nearby: Yes, local bus (number 638). First, you will need to take one of the buses that go to the Hills District.
And any other details you think are important: The best way to go to Fagan Park is driving. Parking costs $5 per vehicle for all day. There are two car parks, one off Arcadia Rd at the main park entrance, and another off Carrs Rd. This car park is closer to the Nations Gardens.
Mireia Garriga, is a mum of three little girls and loves to explore new places. ‘Since I met my husband, I’ve lived in Niagara Falls (Canada), Barcelona (Spain) and Brisbane. I wonder what will be our next stop after Sydney…Hopefully; we will stay here for many years! ;-)’
More Photos of Fagan Park