Belair National Park
Belair National Park (formerly known as Belair Recreation Park) is a protected area located at Belair in South Australia (Australia), 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) south of Adelaide city centre and which covers an area of 835 hectares (2,060 acres). It was proclaimed in 1891 and was the first national park in South Australia, second in Australia (after Sydney's Royal National Park which was proclaimed in 1879) and the tenth in the world. The national park lies within the Adelaide Hills and Mitcham council area, and forms part of a chain of protected areas located along the Adelaide Hills Face Zone. The national park is administered by the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources.
The Belair National Park has excellent recreation and social facilities within an outdoor environment. There are many areas of interest within the park, including Old Government House, the Nursery, Playford Lake and the Adventure Playground. It has numerous tennis courts and ovals, and has walking, bike and horse-riding trails. The national park has an outstanding presentation of the State’s native fauna, attracting visitors, showcasing the State’s park system and contributing to the community awareness of the natural environment. Some species of fauna commonly encountered in the national park include the southern brown bandicoot, tawny frogmouth, brown tree frog and shingleback lizard.
The first European people traversed the Belair area in 1837. In 1840, Governor Gawler raised a government farm on which sick horses and bullocks from government departments could be agisted. In 1881, a proposal was put forward for small agricultural holdings and also, the national park was dedicated, making it the first National Park in South Australia. Many exotic and non-indigenous plants were introduced and are now found in the park as weeds. Numerous native plants, such as Cootamundra wattle, have become environmental weeds after being introduced into areas outside their natural range.
The Belair National Park has suffered major disturbance to its natural ecosystems and natural vegetation communities through the accidental invasion of non-indigenous plants as well as the deliberate introduction of exotic and non-indigenous plants to certain zones within the park.
A short circuit around Playford Lake.
A 3 km circuit walk from the main car park to the Adventure Playground.
A 3 km circuit walk to Long Gully.
A 4 km circuit departing from near Playford Lake.
The national park 's best walk. A 6.5 km circuit that visits the park's waterfalls and travels to the higher areas away from the recreation areas.
The first 5 km of the Yurrebilla Trail is in the national park . It begins at the Belair railway station and continues toward the Lower Waterfall before departing the park at the Sheoak Road boundary.