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Saturday, 25 September 2021

Just north-west of the City is this sprawling family-friendly destination that's got a lot on offer for families. Discover your own 'backyard' or visit somewhere new today. Here's some ideas to set you on your merry way!

moonee ponds valley family 

#1 Maribrynong River precinct, The Boulevard, Aberfeldie

It mightn’t be the Yarra, but the Maribyrnong River has a lot going for it.  In particular, the stretch of the river between Maribyrnong Rd and Afton St in Aberfeldie is great for families.  The 4km loop around the river is excellent for walks with strollers or family bike rides.  The access all abilities playground at Maribyrnong Park has a good combination of active and imaginative play features, while the fab Pirate Ship at the Riverside Park near Fawkner St is already causing a buzz.  There is food and drink available at Poyton’s Nursery café and at the Boathouse.


#2 Valley Toy Library, 129 Lincoln Rd Essendon

The Moonee Valley Toy Library has quickly become a favourite with local families since opening in 2011.  With over 2000 toys, it is an affordable way to keep your children entertained with high quality toys.  In addition to a large range of toys for 0-6 year olds, the toy library also rents party toys such as jumping castles, ball pits, roller coasters and activity gyms.

The Moonee Valley Toy Library will be opening a second branch in Avondale Heights later this year.


#3 Essendon Traffic School, Corner Albion and Lawson Streets

Not only a great place for your little bike rider to learn the road rules, but also suitable for your little trike and balance bike riders.

Open Saturday mornings during school terms and during the week on school holidays. These public sessions are first come, first served with no bookings and can fill up fast on sunny days in the school holidays. If you don't get in, don't worry, there's a lovely playground next door at Montgomery Park.

Details of opening hours are available here

There are now sessions dedicated to pre-school kids, so check session details carefully. The Essendon Traffic School is also available for private party hire.


#4 Friends of Ours, 1097 Mt Alexander Road, North Essendon

Moonee Valley doesn’t really have a kids café to equal Jack and Daisy (Pascoe Vale) or Birdie Num Nums (North Carlton) but it does have plenty of good cafes that cater for the little ones.

Friends of Ours have great service, tasty food and good coffee and a Little Friends of Ours menu. $1 from each Little Friends of Ours meal goes to the Good Friday Appeal


#5 Queens Park, Mt Alexander Rd, Moonee Ponds

Queens Park is Moonee Valley’s finest and oldest park, which is loved for its mature trees, ornamental lake and wildlife. Once an important watering reserve for the Doutta Galla Aboriginal tribes, it is rich in local history; gold diggers camped here to refresh before continuing their journey to the fields as did Burke and Wills on their expedition in 1860.

Nowadays families flock here for picnics, community events and to enjoy the two playgrounds and swimming pool.  Curators Collective Cafe overlooks the junior playground and makes a great location for mothers group catch-ups.

Pick up a Junior Rangers kit at Oliver’s Garden to explore and discover Queens Park using the guide, map, checklist, binoculars and magnifying glass.  Maybe you’ll find some special animals that live on the island?






Melbourne, Australia


Humidity: 31%

Wind: 16.09 km/h

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