Burwood Walks #19: Central Park

Two teenagers enjoying a drink in Lower Reserve.
Two teenagers enjoying a drink in Lower Reserve.

Our starting point is in Camberwell Road, 100m south-east of Camberwell Junction itself. From Burwood Village, take the 75 tram towards the city, to Stop 42. This entire walk is on Melway map 59. We start at J1, beside a distinctive circular brick building, which currently houses a single automated public toilet. It was a much larger toilet, but has recently been downsized and modernised.

From this point, walk south through Lower Reserve past Camberwell Primary School, which is State School no. 888! When you reach the memorial drinking fountain, veer slightly right, walking south beside the tennis courts. You cannot miss the huge sandstone building “Basilica of our Lady of Victories”, built in 1913. It is beautiful inside and usually open.

From here, walk east along Reserve Road, passing what was the church hall (now part of the primary school). You could spend quite a lot of time in this “precinct” if you wish, but our walk now heads south through the parkland next to the Civic Centre. So far, we have been walking for about 15 minutes, and we cross into Inkerman Road, still walking south. This road is a through road for pedestrians, bisected by Seymour Grove.

At the end of Inkerman Road, turn right into the shady Alma Road, past a huge hedge and slate roofed house. (We see many more of these features in Camberwell). Oaks, paperbarks and a huge Moreton Bay Fig are also notable. Just five minutes later, we reach busy Burke Road. Here, turn left then right into St Helens Road (H2). An interesting mix of houses and developing distant views to the city are features of this street. After about 10 minutes, take the first street on the left (Widford Street). This is a slightly uphill street and we follow it for three short blocks, to the top of what was known as the Mount Ida estate, then on to the large Anderson Park, and its great views. We will now walk gently downhill south, although wandering around is also encouraged. I walked south, parallel to Widford Street for 10 minutes (about 50m inside the park), passing large eucalypts and a huge playground, and lots of picnickers (on a Sunday afternoon). There are toilets near the Community Hub.

As you exit the park, look for Lawson Street (G4) and continue south down Lawson Street. Turn right at the second street (Buley Street) and walk west for one block to our second (much quieter and smaller) park – Cato Park, at Lovell Street. Walk diagonally across admiring this lovely park (south-west), with its plantings of native vegetation. You can see that we are heading for busy Tooronga Road (F4).

Sadly, we now have about 10 minutes or so of road walking (also south) along Tooronga Rd, but there are “temptations” along the way (i.e. shops). Use the overpass to cross the freeway (F5), continuing south until you cross the Glen Waverley railway line, then turn immediately left into Milton Parade with its peppercorn and plane trees greeting you. As you walk along this pleasant street you will notice the noise level decreasing! At the end of this street, turn right into Osborne Avenue, which crosses Malvern Road continuing south, to Nash Street (G7). Turn left here, passing the aged care complex. Just 100 m along Nash Street, turn right, into our tiniest park, also beside the aged care village. This park is a little gem, dominated by three large eucalypts, a huge oak tree, a small playground to match the scale of the park, a recently planted Kurrajong tree, and don’t miss the historical information about the settlement of this suburb, Tooronga.

Exiting this park, to the left, you will see another tree-lined street heading south. This is Belmont Avenue (G8). Walk along this street, crossing High Street, into Erica Avenue, but still continuing south. There are several weatherboard houses of note along this section. Halfway along, Erica Street bends, but does not change its name. Erica Street does finish at Wattletree Road, and if you look to your left, you will see our final destination, Central Park (promised in Walk 17)(G10).

This park is truly huge, with a war memorial surrounded by rosemary bushes, a “Lone Pine”, playing fields, running/walking track, lots of shady trees, a conservatory (locked when I was there), toilets, some unusual plants and quieter picnic areas. Loop around the park to return to the Wattletree Road tram terminus. There is even an accurate sundial and a “Bottle Tree” near the tram stop, and there are food and drink shops nearby.

The triple tram trip to return to Burwood starts with Route 5 to Glenferrie Road, then Route 16 north to Riversdale Road, and Route 75 east to Burwood.

About Mark Learmonth 19 Articles
Mark is a retired Science and Chemistry teacher, who enjoys bushwalking and exploring public transport to access these walks. He has lived in Mount Waverley for about 40 years!