Launceston contains some of Australia's oldest parks and recreational areas. Many of these date back to the 1800s, the most notable being City Park, Princes Square, Windmill Hill, Royal Park, Lilydale Falls and the Cataract Gorge Reserve.
City Park was originally developed by the Launceston Horticultural Society and handed over to the Launceston City Council in 1863. It features many trees, structures and buildings, including the Albert Hall, dating back to the 1800s. City Park is located in the heart of Launceston. This beautiful parkland features mature trees and shrubs, a display of annual flowers, a Japanese Macaque monkey enclosure, the John Hart Conservatory, a duck pond, senses garden, monuments, chess board, historic Albert Hall, barbeque area and a children's playground. Main entrance: Tamar Street or corner of Cimitiere and Lawrence Streets.
City Park was once called the 'People's Park', which reflects how the park has been viewed by the people of Launceston since its beginnings. It has been a place of many important exhibitions, gatherings, musicals and cultural events and public meetings. This continues today.City Park is famous for hosting Tasmania's premier food, wine and entertainment event��- Festivale.
John Hart Conservatory
The Macaque Monkey Enclosure is open from 8.00am��- 4.00pm (April��- September) and 8.00am��- 4.30pm (October��- March).
The John Hart Conservatory is open weekdays from 8.30am��- 4.30pm and weekends from 9.00am��- 4.30pm (April��- September) and from 9.00am��- 5.30pm (October��- March).
Royal Park and Kings Park
Royal Park, originally the site of a military barracks was developed as parkland in the late 1800s and officially named Royal Park in 1912. It contains Launceston's Cenotaph and is a very popular social and tourist destination. Royal Park and Kings Park are traditional parks with a river edge boardwalk connecting the Cataract Gorge Reserve to the Inveresk Precinct, taking in Ritchie's Mill, Home Point and Seaport. The area features the Tamar River, mature trees, multi-use trails, skate park and boat ramp. It also provides access to the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery's Royal Park site and to river cruises.
Originally a clay-pit where convicts made bricks for the construction of St Johns Church, Princes Square is an extraordinary square with a colourful history. Princes Square was part of Launceston's network of planned public places, a formal and organised public space that demonstrated European sophistication, and remains an unusually intact and original 19th century town square. It was created in the image of similar British designs, its elm trees, like its name, suggested its suitability as a site of royal celebrations. Before the square was opened in 1859, the site had been used as a military parade ground before being set aside as a public reserve in 1826.