Perfect for a picnic stop next time you're out and about in the Adelaide Hills, Lenswood Centennial Park is a cute little park in the century-old village of Lenswood. It's a peaceful place filled with shady groves and sunny slopes.
A cute little stream runs through the middle of the valley in winter - cross the bridge to walk further into the park and follow the statues and markers of the heritage trail. It's only a short walk and is an easy way to learn more about the long history of this important agricultural area.
The small pockets of flat land by the creeks were first farmed by settlers for vegetables and berries. The area was known as Jerry's Flat before being declared as Lenswood in 1917. Over time, the slopes were cleared and mainly apple orchards went in, establishing the area as one of the best apple-growing regions in South Australia. The Lenswood Co-op Cold Store is just up the hill and opened in 1934 as the area became an apple growing hub.
To celebrate the town's centenary, the local community planned a series of life-size steel silhouettes, each one depicting pioneers of the district's development. They are scattered along the short walking trail and are marked with descriptive plaques and QR codes for those keen to know more. There are 10 silhouettes, including those honouring the indigenous people, gold panners, pioneer women, wattle strippers and timber cutters, and some noting the importance of horticulture and tourism to the area.
The walk only takes 20 minutes (or so) on a relatively unmade trail that isn't too hard on the legs. The slopes aren't too steep either. The park by the carpark has a picnic bench and toilets while there are places to stop and sit further into the trail. It's likely a park best enjoyed in winter and spring when the curiously named 'Cock Wash Creek' is running and the grass is green. Don't forget to look up! There's plenty of birdlife and wildlife including koalas. There's also a general store nearby with food and drinks available.
Lenswood Centennial Park is on Lobethal Road as you enter Lenswood. It might be on your way to the Onkaparinga Valley or you might just stumble upon it on one of those lazy Adelaide hills day trips we all love. Either way, it's a great spot to stop and soak up a little local atmosphere.