Hidden behind a hedge that screens busy Lavender Bay Road is Clark Park. It is a delightful park with many great features, including a magnificent view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Luna Park & the city skyline.
The view is not the only thing going for this park. It is a fairly large park, but only has three paths. One goes alongside a garden situated below the hedge. The garden is planted in historic sandstone pockets popular in the early 20th century. We have a number of parks locally that have this feature & I particularly like them.
The park is sloped from the street, so the hedge is quite high behind the garden providing privacy & a screen from the noise & sight of traffic. There are stone seats built into the garden area & every pocket is filled with flowers. Behind each seat are a couple of lavender plants, so you smell the scent of lavender when you sit here. The colour is great to see. It’s very old-worldish & charming.
This path continues on below street level to provide access to the back of around six houses & to a walkway that provides access to Quibaree Park on the foreshore & the Lavender Bay Wharf. This walkway can also be accessed from Lavender Bay Road. The area beside the walkway is filled with massive Fig trees with significant under-storey planting. It is an exceptionally beautiful space where people are not encouraged to enter.
Another path curves from the entrance of Clark Park in a wide arch to half a dozen houses that front the park. Beside this path is a significantly large tiered garden filled with native plants & shrubs & again, filled with colour. I found this garden most impressive. One other path travels the left side of the park.
The remainder of Clark Park is a grassed area with several large exotic trees that provide shade & beauty. There are lots of bench seats that allow people to sit, relax & take in the view. It is a popular park judging by the number of people sitting, walking or having a picnic. There was also a wedding while we were there. The guests faced the view of the harbour with the tiered garden behind. I thought this park was a perfect place for a wedding. Thankfully, it was a beautiful blue-sky day too. The beauty of Clark Park offers many opportunities for wedding photos.
The park comes to the edge of a gully, below which is Wendy’s Secret Garden. The edge of the gully is a wall of plants & trees. If mobility is an issue, there is plenty of garden to see just wandering along this section.
The edge of Wendy’s Secret Garden provides a visual green belt between the park & the harbour. The Jacaranda trees were in flower & large beds of lavender mixed with masses of other plants fitted the name Lavender Bay. It was a good time to visit.
You can enter Wendy’s Secret Garden via a number of paths from the Clark Park, but we decided to enter via what appeared to be the main entrance beside a massive veteran Fig tree.
Beside Clark Park on the right is a walkway that travels down the hill & under a historic railway bridge to Quibaree Park, which is situated on the waterfront. There are clean & modern accessible public toilets here. There is also a grassed area in front of the water with a 3-4 very old Cabbage tree palms. Lavender Bay Wharf is a main feature here. It is a beautiful wooden structure with a gorgeous metal name sign attached on both sides. See photo.
From here the Lavender Bay Foreshore walk takes people to Art Barton Park located just west of Luna Park & under & past the Sydney Harbour Bridge. It was busy with people. The Lavender Bay Foreshore is planted with all kinds of plants & trees. North Sydney Council certainly likes their trees.
Having since learnt that Art Barton Park is filled with sculptures, I am sorry that we did not walk to this park. This will be trip for the future, as will be Watt Park further to the left of Clark Park. We saw the entrance to Watt Park & that was impressive enough, but did not realize that it lead to a park because the greenery was so thick & lush. It appears that they are not afraid of boogey-men in Lavender Bay.
To the left of Clark Park & fronting Harbourview Crescent is a fairly large vegetable garden that is doing well. I am unsure whether this is part of Wendy’s Secret Garden or is another community initiative. Regardless, it was very good to see. It clearly demonstrated how land can be repurposed & made more useful. Vegetable gardens are very successful at bringing people together.
Wendy’s Secret Garden was wonderful, but Clark Park was also great in its own right. My post would be too long to write about both these places, so I will write about Wendy’s Secret Garden in a later post. The garden deserves a separate post.
If you would like a change of scenery & a hefty dose of green beauty & tranquility, I would highly recommend visiting Clark Park, Wendy’s Secret Garden & Quibaree Park. There is enough here to keep you busy looking whilst still giving time to sit back & chill while taking in the view.