I like to participate in life rather than be a spectator. Music, dancing, theatre, travelling, food, cycling and walking are some of my passions. Writing is an enjoyable pastime that allows me to share my experiences.
Published January 3rd 2016
Get back to nature
Lake Parramatta Reserve is 75ha of Sydney bushland surrounding a lake created by the damming of Hunt's Creek in 1856. The heritage listed dam was the first large dam in Australia. The reserve has many points of interest, such as evidence of usage by the local Aboriginal clan, natural flora and fauna features, non motorised water activities, picnic and playground facilities.
There are three well signposted walks in the reserve, our favourite being the 4.2km Lake Circuit which takes 60-90 minutes and offers great views of the lake a variety of terrains and landscapes. Along the way you pass beautiful eucalypts, stands of wildflowers, sandstone steps and rock caves.
A map of the walking tracks from the reserve brochure
The walks are interesting and range in difficulty. Small children may struggle a bit with the steps but would definitely enjoy clambering over the rocks and stepping stones. Although close to the city of Parramatta, you feel that you are in the bush when you are away from the main road. Be aware to take plenty of water if attempting the longer walk as there is nowhere to replenish water supplies on the circuit. There is only one toilet block which is located in the main picnic area behind the cafe building.
Apart from the bushwalks, there are also plenty of areas for picnics and BBQs and there is also a cafe on site. Since 2015 the lake has been reopened for swimming and there is a lifeguard on duty during weekends and public holidays one can also bring canoes and rubber boats into the water and some daring souls choose to jump in from rock ledges on the far side of the lake.
In summer months it would be lovely to cool off in the lake but the area is beautiful all year round; in Spring and early Summer there are many varieties of wildflowers. Throughout the year it is possible to see a variety of birds and small reptiles.
There is plenty of parking on site, but the reserve is very popular on weekends as some people get in very early to reserve picnic shelters for children's parties and family gatherings. That being said, the area is large enough to find a secluded sheltered spot if you don't mind a bit of walking.