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Fairies in the Garden - Deanery Reserve

Home > Adelaide > Family | Free | Fun for Children | Fun Things To Do | School Holiday Activities
by Paula McManus (subscribe)
Photography obsessed writer and urban explorer. Lover of nature, art and long weekends. Adelaide, South Australia. https://www.facebook.com/paula.mcmanus1
Published March 15th 2015
Meet me at the corner of Fairy Lane and Pixie Place
In a little park in the Adelaide hills, you'll find a little bit of fairy magic.

In that little corner of the quiet park, there are some trees. Sssshhh, be quiet though, because it's a magical and special place.

Fairy house, Deanery Reserve Bridgewater
The fairies at Number 5 (©paula mcmanus)


Move about slowly and silently and look closely at the trees - you'll see some little doors. They are the doors to very special little homes - they are the fairy houses of Deanery Reserve, a magical place where the fairies live.

There are 7 fairy homes in Deanery Reserve at the moment and it seems that there are many more fairies who are waiting to move in to this lovely little fairy community. The fairy folk have left a pile of wood, rocks and pine cones there for children to make a home for them. All you need are some tools, some decorations and your imagination.

Fairy house, Deanery Reserve Bridgewater
Fairy house, Deanery Reserve (©paula mcmanus)


"Garden fairies come at dawn,
Bless the flowers then they're gone."
~Author Unknown

Deanery Reserve is located on Old Mount Barker Road in Bridgewater, near Arbury Park. Drive over the old bridge (see footnote) and onto the dirt road section. There is parking in the clearing on the left. There are no toilets, no seating, no water - no facilities in the reserve at all apart from a bin. Bring your own chairs and picnic. If you stay long enough, who knows - you may just meet a fairy or two.

Fairy house, Deanery Reserve Bridgewater
Fairy house, Deanery Reserve (©paula mcmanus)


Deanery Reserve is the site of the Rural Deanery Hotel. built by Benjamin and Elizabeth Dean in 1841. There is no sign of the hotel now, there's just a memorial stone to mark the spot. The area used to be named Cox Creek (Cock's Creek). Cox's Creek is part of the Heysen Trail.

An interesting historical fact about the little bridge is that it is the only bridge in South Australia built by convicts. They were in South Australia after being released, built the bridge, got into trouble again, got arrested and sent back to Van Diemens Land (Tasmania). There are timber sections of the bridge which are original - how fascinating!
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Why? Once upon a time.....
Where: The Deanery Reserve, Bridgewater
Cost: Free
Your Comment
Just delightful Paula! ..will take the nippers to see this park. Your photography is wonderful and I want lessons on your tweaks and techniques- lol. well done.
by Kat May (score: 3|1282) 1289 days ago
Such a magical place! Thank you, I would have never known it was there. Do you know who's responsible for creating it? I hope they know the delight they've given to the children. And it seems to be continually being added to!
by kated (score: 0|5) 1216 days ago
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