Pat Rafter Park is literally a hidden gem - it's tucked away behind Carseldine Central, on a little side street off the permanently busy Gympie Road. Located on Medallion Place in Carseldine, the best place to park when visiting Pat Rafter Park is on Accolade Place, where there is a carpark with ample parking spaces, located in the complex that is home to a Hungry Jack's and Caltex. Carseldine is located on the northside of Brisbane, and is approximately a 30 minute drive from Brisbane's CBD. This suburb is mainly residential in nature, and was named after William Carseldine, a fencing contractor who owned land in an area now known as Carseldine.
Some of the other shops in the same area - lookout for this sign on Gympie Road to know where to turn in!
One of Pat Rafter Park's main selling points (according to Eddy anyway) is their off-leash dog park, which is relatively expansive in nature (especially considering their close proximity to a major road) and is also covered with green grass and littered with lush green trees. It's a green coloured doggy paradise out here! For the 'hoomans' who are merely here to supervise their 'furbabies', Pat Rafter Park on behalf of Brisbane City Council has kindly provided a comfortable park bench for them to sit on while the dogs have a romp and (hopefully) tire themselves out. For the dogs, there is also of course water available, in addition to doggy poop bags at the entrance of the off-leash area, so remember to stock up before you head in! Don't worry if you forget though, because Pat Rafter Park is one of the few parks that I've come across in Brisbane that have doggy poop bags available inside the off-leash area too - these are located towards the back, near the second gate.
There is a paved walking track that spans the circuit of Pat Rafter Park, providing for both disabled access and a space for fitness enthusiasts to have a jog or run. Please note that the walking track itself isn't particularly long, so it may be better suited to those who are only just starting to run, those who prefer a brisk stroll instead of running, or to those who don't mind literally running in circles - at least you won't get lost!
Eddy pictured with part of the walking track at Pat Rafter Park.
Of course, a park would not be complete without a children's playground, complete with play equipment - after all, the majority of patrons who frequent parks are the little ones! Pat Rafter Park, although not the biggest park by any means, has heaps of different playground equipment compacted into their premises. Available equipment include all the classics - a slide, see-saw, swings, and a spring horse in the shape of a kangaroo! Similar to the off-leash dog area, Pat Rafter Park on behalf of Brisbane City Council has kindly provided park benches for parents to sit and supervise from an appropriate distance without needing to stand around all day. It's also worth mentioning that the playground area is shaded by a giant canopy, protecting children from potential sun damage.
Some of the playground equipment available at Pat Rafter Park...
Now that the dogs have had an off-leash romp and the kids have had theirs in the playground area, everyone, parents included, should be feeling pretty hungry - not to worry, because Pat Rafter Park has an electric barbecue available for patrons to use free of charge, to help them with your hunger pangs. There is also shady seating available, in the form of a gazebo complete with a table and park benches. Otherwise, choose from the many open grassy spots that Pat Rafter Park has available, and have a traditional style picnic which both the kids and dogs will enjoy!
Note: If a picnic barbecue isn't quite your thing, or it's being used by another patron, there are heaps of eateries in the same complex, including Carseldine Roadhouse, Gloria Jean's Coffees, Subway, and Jacob's Bakery. If all else fails, Hungry Jack's is always a hit with children - this particular Hungry Jack's is not your average fast food restaurant. It's furbished to look like an old-school American diner - save yourself the cost of purchasing a plane ticket!