Our best river picnic spots
Our pick of the best riverside picnic spots
The Hawkesbury runs for 120km from Yarramundi, through Wisemans Ferry finally reaching the sea near Brooklyn. Luckily this means we have a great selection of parks and reserves beside the river for a family picnic.
Picking our favourite spots was a hard exercise as everyone in the office seemed to have a special local haunt - however we've gone for picnic spots where you've got plenty of space to social distance and good facilities to make your day a great one.
Also if you want to see a comprehensive list of all parks and reserves in the Hawkesbury check out the details here.
And remember keep up-to-date with the latest Covid restrictions for gatherings in public places. It's changing rapidly at the moment so keep up on what you legally can do by visiting the NSW Health website.
Here's a list of our top 5 riverside picnic spots. They aren't in any particular order so why don't you try them all and decide for yourself.
1. Governor Phillip Park, Windsor
This park is close to the centre of Windsor and is a good all-rounder for a family picnic. It has a popular playground, lots of shady options as well as a good pathway that runs along the river bank. There's plenty of space to kick the footy around and grassy spots to settle into. Come November this is the place to see outstanding jacarandas.
At the end of the park is a public boat ramp with plenty of parking. If you are here in the late afternoon it's a perfect spot to watch the sun setting across the Hawkesbury.
2. Hanna Park, North Richmond
Another park close to the centre of North Richmond. This ones got lots of trees along the river bank and a big grassy area to throw the frisbee around after lunch. There is a skate park and a wharf to fish from (or launch your canoe in the warmer months). Make sure you walk along the pathway underneath the North Richmond Bridge to see the crossing from a different perspective - there is a small kids playground on the southern side once you go under the bridge. The park has public toilets and BBQ's as well as a a few tables and chairs.
3. Wisemans Ferry Park, Wisemans Ferry
This one is a very popular park near where the vehicle ferry goes across the Hawkesbury River. It can get a super hectic on weekends so if you are after space and quietness it's best to head here midweek. The autumn colours are magnificent and sunsets over the cliffs on the other side of the river are special. Photographers or Insta fans will be spoilt for choice. If you are going with a big family group the covered areas can be booked through the Hills Shire Council. There is a popular playground for the kids as well as picnic tables, BBQ's, public toilets and a nearby kiosk to buy that ice cream.
4. Cattai National Park, Cattai
Best spot to see kangaroos, birdwatch and plenty of space at this small but interesting National Park. Home to the historic Arndell Farm house. The park has got a wharf to fish from and plenty of covered picnic areas. Big groups can book some of the larger sites on 02 4580 2700. This place would also be ideal for older kids who want to muck around on their bikes - it's fairly quiet and the cars move around slowly. It's best to check the status of this Park online as it was still closed in early July 2020 due to flood damage.
5. Macquarie Park, Windsor
This park is opposite the township of Windsor on the western side of the river and was originally part of an historic farm. There is plenty of parking and you can get right down to the river itself on a huge sandy bank. For the canoeist there is a launching pathway and wharf down from the carpark to the river. The park has a large playground and a cafe where you can pick up a cold or hot drink and food. Toilets are available.
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