A freelance writer with an interest in just about everything.
Published January 14th 2013
Peaceful parkland in the Sydney CBD
Sitting just across the road from the monuments and fig trees of Hyde Park, Cook and Phillip Park is perhaps overshadowed by its more famous neighbour. But that doesn't mean you should pass by this serene patch of green without stopping in. It's a much quieter spot than Hyde Park and offers plenty of quiet little corners where you can escape the noise and concrete of the city.
Linked by a pedestrian footbridge to the nearby Botanic Gardens and Domain and parklands, Cook and Phillip Park offers a number of welcome distractions from city life. A complicated network of water features and fountains wind their way through the park, and you'd be surprised at the calming effect the simple sound of running water can have on a space.
If you're planning a picnic lunch, the park's large grass terraces are the ideal spot to spread out a rug. There's also extensive seating areas on offer, plus a number of water bubblers to keep you cool when the mercury rises.
Office workers are a common sight in the park on weekdays, as is the occasional boot camp class or personal trainer putting a client through their paces. Dog owners also frequent Cook and Phillip Park, as the grass terraces are designated off-leash areas at all times. When your pooch spends his days in a high-rise apartment, the opportunity to get outside and explore needs to be seized with both paws.
The park also features an impressive children's play area that has both traditional and adventure play equipment to keep the youngsters entertained. There's a basketball court within the park boundaries as well, along with a few public artworks.
Another great feature of Cook and Phillip Park is that it is home to an indoor aquatic centre with a 50-metre swimming pool, gym facilities and plenty of indoor sports competitions.