01 Jun 10 Family Nature Experiences to try this Winter – By Claire Lock
1. Adelaide National Park City Month
Did you know the entire month of June celebrates Adelaide becoming a National Park City? There are over 75 events to connect with local nature: discover guided walks, tours, recreational activities, Aboriginal cultural events, planting days, and opportunities to learn about plants, animals, food, and gardening. Join us for family geocaching with the City of Mitcham or a family nature walk at Onkaparinga National Park! Find out more about National Park City here.
2. Snorkel at Cuttlefest
Where in the world can you see tens of thousands of weird and colourful Australian Giant Cuttlefish come together en masse? Right in our backyard! This winter, take the plunge near Whyalla, on Barngarla sea country, to experience a globally unique phenomenon the kids will talk about for years to come. Safe and supervised family snorkel tours can be booked with Experiencing Marine Sanctuaries (toasty warm wetsuits and all other equipment supplied).
Image: Carl Charter
3. Book a nature walk
Ready to experience a new natural place or learn more about your favourite spots? The Nature Play SA team is hosting a series of guided nature and wellness walks for families throughout winter. Join us for fun and engaging times together outdoors, discovering local plants and wildlife like native orchids, fungi, butterflies, and threatened species. See what’s coming up and book your spot here.
4. Explore a local creek
Pop on the gumboots and embrace sensory play with a trip to one of Adelaide’s best creeks for families. Winter sees creeks and outdoor play opportunities come to life, and we’re spoilt with seasonal flows in local reserves, forests, and national parks. Let the kids splash and wade in shallows, stomp on muddy banks, balance across rocks and logs, or race sticks downstream. Keep eyes (and ears) peeled for emerging tadpoles, frogs, yabbies, and other water life!
5. Walk to a waterfall
Rainy months are a perfect time to release pent-up energy on South Australia’s magical waterfall trails. Families can find walks for all ages and abilities, from short toddler and pram-friendly strolls to National Park hikes that will challenge the most active of families. Rug up and discover our pick of Adelaide and the Fleurieu Peninsula’s best waterfall locations now.
6. Discover Park of the Month
Get into SA’s amazing national parks with National Parks and Wildlife SA’s Park of the Month program. With a calendar of monthly events, it’s a great way to understand our special natural places and find new ways to enjoy them with your fam. Over winter, you can experience Adelaide National Park City in June, Marine Parks of South Australia in July, and Mallee Parks of the Riverland in August. Sign up for Park of the Month updates to keep in the loop with what’s on!
7. Celebrate International Mud Day
Embrace creativity and discover the sensory benefits of gritty, cold, wet, sloppy, icky, magnificent mud! Communities and education sites worldwide celebrate International Mud Day on 29 June with special events, gatherings and activities – make a plan to be part of the movement or celebrate mud play any day you like. Make a mud pit, create a mud pie, experiment with clay, or find more ideas here. And if you’re not sure about keeping warm or the clean-up, check out our waterproof onesies – perfect for hours or wet, messy play this winter!
8. Visit a nature playground
South Aussie kids are reaping the rewards of investment in nature playspaces and adventure playgrounds, encouraging risky, imaginative, and fulfilling play for all ages and abilities. Discover our pick of SA’s top adventure and nature playgrounds: where children can run through the belly of a giant Red-bellied Black Snake, peer for pirates, search for megafauna fossils, crawl in caves, and much more. And with many of SA’s best playspaces set in national parks and natural reserves, a simple trip to the playground quickly ignites curiosity and free play in a wilder world.
9. Go winter camping
From windswept shores to ochre ranges, nothing beats immersing the family in South Australia’s wonderous National Parks. Discover camping’s special charms like winter campfires, bushwalks, fascinating wildlife and emerging wildflowers, orchids, and fungi. Find nine of our favourite family-friendly National Parks camp sites or check out a ForestrySA campground near you (bookings essential). Still don’t think winter camping is your thing? There’s a range of accommodation offered in many National Parks, forests, and natural spaces too!
10. Snuggle up with a nature craft
Rainy days or winter colds have you spending more time inside? Creatively connect with nature and each other through family arts and crafts. Some of our tried-and-tested activities include making nature weavings, lavender sachets, natural playdoughs, clay decorations, and DIY seedling pots. Make warm drinks, spend a few hours creating, then pop your masterpieces on display!