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  • Writer's pictureHelen Avaient

Perth Parks – Harold Boas Gardens & Mardalup Park

Parks are a fantastic way to spend time exploring and enjoying, especially during the COVID-19 shutdown when lots of other entertainment venues are currently closed.

On a bright sunny autumn day I visited two very different parks in Perth, both delightful in their own beauty.

Harold Boas Gardens is in Delhi St, West Perth. A 5 acre Perth Town Lot was established here named to commemorate the Suppression of the Indian mutiny and the 1877 crowning of Queen Victoria as Empress of India. In 1897-1898 the Gardens were originally called Delhi Square. Redeveloped in the 1970s the park was renamed to the Harold Boas Gardens, in honour of the former Perth City Councillor, architect and town planner in the first half of the twentieth century.

Surrounded by streets of tall apartment buildings, this tranquil oasis in the city is gorgeous. Even though it is close to the city, it is very quiet and peaceful. It was nice to see sign posts with the tree names, both the common and the Latin names. The large palm trees and Birds of Paradise grown under the 100 year old shade trees, giving a green view of the tiered layers wherever you look. The open grassed areas are luxuriously green and inviting.

As soon as I arrived I was entranced by the sun glistened on a delightful pond with ducks frolicking in the water. The sounds of trickling water leads you to explore further. There was a gorgeous small waterfall under the large branch, reaching out over the pond, offering shade to the many birds there.

Paths lead you to explore further and footbridges cross the small stream, meandering through the park. Brick paths that are easy to navigate lead you around corners that surprise you with new delights. There are several large grassed areas where I observed people exercising, office workers eating their picnic lunch in the sunshine, and some people simply sitting and reading on some of the many wooden bench seats. There are no picnic tables or barbeques here.

The garden was wonderfully set out in a way that doesn’t allow you to see the whole park at once, it must be explored and as each new area is revealed, it delights.

The stream’s source is a delightful small lake was at the top of the park.

Easy to get to, the park is 300 metres from the City West train station, or catch the free CAT (Central Area Transit) bus, green stop 8 or yellow stop 18. If you drive here, please note that there is only paid meter parking around the park.

Mardalup Park, East Perth is a more recent development, created in 1997. It was previously the site of the Gas Works and has been a camping ground by the Noongar (indigenous) people in the past. The word Mardalup is Noongar for “place of small marsupial”.

Situated on the Swan River it is a photographer’s dream spot to snap photos of the Suncorp Sports Stadium, Crown Casino and Matagarup pedestrian Bridge across the river.

There are artworks scattered throughout the park using materials recycled from the old East Perth Gas Works. A series of poles marks the original foreshore and brass plaques give information about the clean-up afterwards. The soil was contaminated to 10 metres below sea level.

This park boasts a wide open manicured lawn leading to a native vegetation area. Tall gums overhead and low grasses and bushes below would be enhanced if visitors could read what the plants were. Sadly, they are not identified. The paths around the park and cemented and easily navigate either on foot or on wheels.

It is peaceful here, only a distant sound of a train crossing bumpy trucks can be heard. Many people are enjoying the park, a lady with her dog, a father playing with his children, joggers, couples strolling hand in hand, bicyclers exercising, and others like myself, enjoying the day. There is plenty of seats available to stop and admire the marvelous views of the river.

Happy Travels!

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