Stepping out for the sun

Cockatoo feeding at Grants Picnic Ground. 165273_01

It’s that time of year where we get the barbeques going, the drinks flowing and get ready to have some fun in the sun.
Summer is the perfect chance to head outdoors to a favourite park or garden and spend quality time with friends and family.
The Yarra Ranges is packed with places to enjoy the ultimate day out, with opportunities that extend the day into bushwalking or sight-seeing.
Don’t forget to pack the essentials like a sun hat, sunscreen, some delicious food and cold drinks.

Upper Yarra Reservoir Park
Situated in Reefton, about 24km east of Warburton along the Warburton Highway, you will find Upper Yarra Reservoir Park.
This is the perfect location for a summer getaway up in the high country.
The park is a great place to camp because it features a barbecue area, camp kitchen, picnic tables and shower facilities.
If you’ve got spare time, there are multiple walking tracks, and a short walk on Brimonga Walking Track will take you to the viewing platform at the top of the reservoir.
From the viewing platform, you can watch the water flow through the reservoir’s outlet basin as it begins its journey to Melbourne.

Blue Lotus Water Garden
A popular Yarra Valley tourist attraction is the Blue Lotus Water Garden.
Since 2006, the water garden has impressed visitors with its flowing waterlilies and lotus.
The tropical-style garden is located in Yarra Junction and features over 14 acres of beautiful water flowers.
Some popular attractions include two lakes, dozens of ponds, sculpture fountains and two large green house displays jam packed of spectacular flowers.
But what really attracts people is the World’s Largest Amazon Water Lilly.
Yes, you did read that right!
The giant lilly is strong enough to support a small child.
It produces white 30cm flowers that eventually turn pink.

Grants Picnic Ground
Whether you’re after a quiet picnic surrounded by angelic birds, an adventurous bush walk or to just enjoy the scenery, then Grants Picnic Ground is the perfect day trip.
This little treasure is located within the Sherbrook Forest and is within the Dandenong Ranges National Park.
Grants Picnic Ground is well-known for visitors being able to feed the birds from a unique feeding area.
To access the bird feeding area, visitors must purchase a token from Grants on Sherbrooke where they will receive a measured amount of birdseed.
There are numerous picnic tables, a barbecue area and toilet facilities at the ground.
If you’re after a nice relaxing bush walk, the Margaret Lester Forest Walk is perfect for you.
It’s just 300m and is an easy level, allowing you to consume the breathtaking forest greenery.
For a bit more of a challenge, there is the Eastern Sherbrooke Forest Walk – it starts and ends at Grants Picnic Ground and is about 7km long.

Some further suggestions:
Bollygum Park- Kinglake; Maroondah Reservoir – Healesville; McKenzie Reserve – Yarra Glen; Badger Weir Picnic Area – Badger Creek; Yarra Ranges National Park – Reefton; Belgrave Recreation Reserve – Belgrave; Millgrove Recreation Reserve – Millgrove; Montrose Brickworks Flora Reserve – Montrose; Powelltown Recreation Reserve – Powelltown; Everard Park – Healesville; Lillydale Lake – Lilydale.

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