Quiet Places To Take The Kids In Sydney
By: Alex Harmon, ellaslist
It might sound like an oxymoron to many parents but for some, finding a quiet place to take the kids can be a godsend. A calm corner in this busy, unpredictable city of ours can be a place for family mindfulness, reflection and inner-thought. Whether your child has sensory issues or just likes to escape the overwhelming sounds of modern life, here are 8 places to enjoy some quiet time.
State Library of NSW
The library is an obvious choice for lovers of quiet time, where the only audible sounds are the turning of pages and the "shhhhh"’s from eager readers. And the State Library is the most esteemed, leather bound, first edition Pulitzer prize winning library of the literary world. It’s unique because it is home to everything you could ever imagine, from works of Shakespeare to old HSC papers. Soldiers diaries from World War One to locks of childrens’ hair!
On Saturday 6 October little book worms can be the first to visit the State Library of NSW's new galleries and learning centre with free exhibitions, interactive digital experiences and a rich program of fun activities for the whole family.
Chinese Garden of Friendship
Darling Harbour is anything but quiet, yet just a stone’s throw away you’ll find this serene, secluded garden where you’ll feel instantly at peace. The area recreates the philosophy and harmony of a traditional Chinese garden in its waterfalls, lakes, exotic plants, pavilions and hidden pathways. With koi carp swimming in the lakes, willows weeping in the breeze and a teahouse serving Chinese tea and dim sum, your kids will be entranced by the soothing sounds of Zen.
Image via Daily Telegraph
Paddington Reservoir Gardens
Escape the bustle of Oxford Street and head to this quiet sunken garden with hidden walkways and history pouring out of every crevice. Talk to the kids about the hanging gardens of Babylon or the ancient bathhouses of Rome while quietly sitting amongst the original brick, timber and iron fixtures. Also check out the super secret Neild Avenue Maze nearby. This hidden gem will have kids quietly plotting their own secret garden works of fiction.
Wendy Whiteley Secret Garden
It’s Sydney’s worst kept secret but we love it anyway and you’ll find it surprisingly quiet most days. It’s rather unwieldy to enter, down a zigzag path with no steps, so it's not popular for families with young children. Nestle in with a book under a sprawling Port Jackson tree or have a nap under a shady Moreton Bay fig.
Sydney Jewish Museum
This important museum is dedicated to documenting and teaching the history and lessons of the Holocaust. Since 1992 the museum has commemorated the lives of the six million Jews murdered by the Nazis and their collaborators, honours the survivors and pays tribute to the "Righteous Among Nations". It is an understandably quiet place and one which will spark many significant conversations with your kids post-visit.
Royal Botanic Garden Sydney
Whether you’re just enjoying the harbour views or wanting to learn more about science, gardens, plants and horticulture, this has got to be the most quiet place in the CBD. Take a free guided walk, hop aboard the miniature train, purchase a plant from the native and exotic nursery or simply relax and enjoy the P&Q!
Image via Ocean Pools NSW
McIver's Baths Coogee
These women’s only ocean baths also welcome young children with their mums. The quiet cliff-side ocean pools are a little oasis hidden amongst the hectic eastern suburbs beach set. It costs just $2 to enter, but make sure you bring coins to throw in the bucket.
These vast sprawling parklands have plenty of space to find a quiet tree to read a book under. The loudest noises come from the ducks as you feed them. Or perhaps the squeals coming from the Ian Potter Wild Play Garden. Take the kids on a mindfulness journey at the Labyrinth, a sandstone a pathway designed for quiet reflection and exploration.
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