Life with a toddler is interesting, to say the least – it’s fun, joyful and frustrating, all at once. No two days are the same, and you never quite know when the next tantrum over the wrong sippy cup is going to come. These curious little people love to be entertained and to get out of the house, which is also good for mum’s sanity too. But where do you go when it’s stinking hot outside and the playground equipment is too hot to even sit on? Luckily, Perth Mums Group has put together a list of places you can take your toddler on a hot day.
Water playgrounds Perth has a plethora of water playgrounds where you can take your toddler for a splash. In central Perth, you’ll find Elizabeth Quay – although there isn’t a great deal of shade and you will need to watch the kids like a hawk around the water, even though most of the area is fenced – plus the Labyrinth Water Fountain at Forrest Place and Hyde Park in North Perth, while north there’s Maylands Water Park.
Octopus Bay at Outback Splash (Image: Funday Group.)
Swimming pools and Leisure Centres Just about every shire in Perth has a leisure centre with a shallow wading pool – the perfect spot to take a toddler on a hot day.
Toddler-friendly beaches Cottesloe Beach has some gorgeous shaded spots, while Port Coogee has a shallow, man-made beach, a water playground and undercover picnic spots. Rockingham Foreshore has a huge array of playgrounds situated next to the beachfront to choose from, and Scarborough Beach is pram-friendly, has a playground and barbeques. For an extended list of child and family friendly beaches, read on here.
Coogee Beach isn't just a nice beach...it also has a playground and a cafe.
Other swimming spots If you aren’t a fan of the beach, why not head to some of Perth’s great swimming spots, such as Point Walter, Serpentine Falls, Bicton Baths or Hillarys. If there’s one thing Perth isn’t short of, it’s places to swim.
Point Walter, Bicton.
The cinema Did you know there are a heap of baby and toddler-friendly cinema sessions running throughout Perth? Each of Perth’s four big cinema chains – Hoyts, Event Cinemas, Ace Cinemas and Grand Cinemas – run movie screenings for parents, babies and toddlers. While some toddlers simply won’t sit still for the whole screening, if you don’t mind running around after them (no one else will, given they are specially run for parents and kids), it’s a lovely cool place to head to. For a list of the sessions, read on here.
Take your baby to the cinema and enjoy the air con (Image: Ace Cinemas.)
A play centre While all play centres have a dedicated area for toddlers, some are certainly more toddler-friendly than others. Tropical Twist has a significant space for younger kids. Sweet Little Play Centre in Joondalup is strictly for kids under five years. Kidz Paradise in Carlisle runs a dedicated Toddler Tuesday session during school terms, which includes story time and arts and craft activities.
Just a small part of the toddler section at Squids Play Centre, Bibra Lake.
Your local library Libraries are no longer a place that demands complete silence, with baby and toddler music sessions and activities creating plenty of noise at lots of libraries during school term mornings. It's always nice and cool in there and you can stay for as long as you like. Contact your local library to see what activities they run.
Child-friendly cafes Air conditioned or lovely, shaded cafes with kids’ play areas are another great place to take your toddler on a hot day. If you love natural shade, head to Little Olive Leaf Café in Willagee. Highgate’s Blacksmith Café has an outdoor area that is mostly shaded and has a kids’ play area, while Sprolo in Como and The Blue Lotus Café and Garden Centre in Stirling are both indoor venues, providing a great escape from the heat.