If you haven’t already been, you might be surprised to hear that there are so many things to do with kids in Ipswich that it’s become one of our favourite day-trip destinations. Located just 40 minutes from Brisbane, Ipswich has several family-friendly activities to explore and Queens Park Ipswich is one of the best.
It features a fantastic playground, free wildlife centre, large café and environmental education centre.Our day at Queens Park Ipswich left such a great impression on our son that he keeps asking us to go back.
It’s easy to spend quite a few hours here, but if you’re wanting more we recommend you pair it with a trip to The Workshops Rail Museum for a full day out.
Queens park is located on Goleby Avenue, approximately 40 minutes from Brisbane city.
Queens Park Ipswich Playground
The creators of the Queens Park playground have done a great job making it fun and engaging for kids as well as practical for parents.
The equipment playground includes:
- A flying fox
- A water play feature with a pump
- Two large slides
- A smaller fort with slide for toddlers
- A train and other toddler friendly structures to explore
- Large rope climbing frames
- A number of swings, including a liberty swing for those in wheelchairs, and toddler-suitable swings
Practical amenities include:
- Toilets located nice and close to the play equipment, including baby change facilities
- Adequate shade, although this varies depending on the time of the day
- Plenty of seating for parents
- Wheelchair accessibility (including toilets)
- Rubber flooring – which is much easier to navigate then chip-bark
- Off-street parking (throughout Queens Park)
The playground is not fenced, but is located within the park grounds.
This park is a great location for a picnic or family gathering. The kids will be kept entertained and there are some nice shaded places to sit. It includes electric barbecues so you can enjoy a sausage sizzle.
Ipswich Nature Centre
Sometimes fondly referred to as the Ipswich Zoo, the Queens Park nature centre is nothing short of fantastic.
A large variety of native animals are set amongst the landscaped gardens that replicate local bushland, and include a large pond with waterfalls and shaded boardwalks.
We were excited to spot:
- Eastern Quolls
- Frill Neck Lizards
- Blue Tongue Lizards
- Jumping mice
- Bilbies (our favourite)
- A large walk-in bird aviary
- Barn yard animals including goats, a cow and chickens.
With so much to see, you can easily spend an hour or so here.
The Ipswich Nature Centre is free to enter but a donation is appreciated and very much deserved. Your donation will contribute to maintaining the centre and caring for the animals.
Ipswich Nature Centre Opening Hours
- School term: Tuesday to Sunday from 9.30 am – 4.00 pm
- School holidays: Monday to Sunday from 9.30 am – 4.00 pm
- Public holidays: 9.30 am – 4.00 pm except Christmas Day and Good Friday.
Queens Park Environment Centre
The Queens Park Environment Centre is located next to the Queens Park Café and is also free to enter.
This small air-conditioned centre has interactive displays teaching children how to look after our local nature and wildlife. This includes aquariums demonstrating the importance of healthy waterways, a lesson on how to recycle, a sensory box and large colourful mural.
It is worth popping into the Ipswich Environment Centre during your visit to the park.
Queens Park Cafe
The Queens Park Café is located in the park grounds, very close to the playground, nature centre and just across from the bowls club. Decorated with bright Australiana murals, it’s a lovely place to rest and enjoy a bite to eat.
It features a good selection of food and drinks, including alcoholic beverages and a great variety of cakes! Breakfast is served until 2 pm. The kid’s menu starts from just $5.50 and includes chicken nuggets, hot dogs, fish and chips, pancakes and a kid’s breakfast.
What we love about Queens Park Café is its efforts to reduce harm to the environment. The café is conscientious about its recycling, and use of biodegradable containers, cutlery and straws.
Although it is not air-conditioned, the cafe has a large outdoor deck with misting fans, overlooking the parklands. It is also fully wheel chair accessible.
The Queens Park Café Opening Hours:
- Monday to Sunday 8.00 am – 5.00 pm (kitchen open until 3.00 pm).
- Public Holidays: 9.00 am – 2.00 pm (kitchen open until 1.00 pm).
- Closed on Good Friday, Christmas Day and Boxing Day (closed).