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Sydney Attractions - Fagan Park

Updated on February 15, 2015

There are a number of beautiful sprawling parks in the Sydney area, but one of the most stunning I have had the pleasure to visit is Fagan Park. This former cattle farming property is located in the northern Hornsby Shire area. The park is the location of the annual Bushland Shire festival - a colourful, cultural festival that began as a garden show and which has taken on a country theme. Fagan Park is one of those locations that has it all - it isn't difficult to spent a whole day there. And why wouldn't you? It's stunning on a sunny day, beautifully mysterious on a grey day and dusk at the park is a special sensory experience.

The park has a few distinct areas of interest: the Eco-Garden, the Netherby House and Historical Buildings, the Garden of Many Nations and Carr's Bush. Each part appeals in a different way, and all work together to make this park an attractive spot for all visitors.

The Eco Garden

Fagan Parks Eco Garden
Fagan Parks Eco Garden

The Eco-Garden is my favourite part of the park. It is a rambling garden that seems charmingly unfettered and loosely planned (although it isn't!). When pumpkins are in season there they grow as they please, finger limes hang in abundance, and sunflowers rise from the borders of the garden. There is a dingy little pool in the garden with it's own water plants, but frogs live there and their croaks add another level of ambiance to the place. The garden looks out over well tended rolling hills and the central lake.

I have never seen so many species of mint as I have seen here; everywhere in the garden you can find plants thriving, springing up in crevices and often being accepted and tended where they stand.

Get up close to the vegetables
Get up close to the vegetables
The writer checking out the composting system
The writer checking out the composting system

There is an educational component to the garden. Not only do most of the vegetables have little signs displaying the common name, and sometimes the scientific name, but there are also often more detailed descriptions of the uses of each plant. In addition there is information on composting and vermiculture. The garden utilizes a number of sound eco-gardening practices including the use of rainwater, crop rotation, mulching and composting.

Parts of the eco-garden are even wheelchair-friendly and there is an attractive gazebo in the centre of the garden for a bit of shade.

The Netherby House

Netherby House
Netherby House | Source

Before the park was dedicated to it's present use as an educational and recreational spot open to the public, it was farm land belonging to the Fagan family.

William Fagan was a free settler who hailed from Ireland. He arrived in Sydney in 1848, married and raised seven children while growing a successful farm business.

The homestead of the Fagan family stands in Fagan Park to this day. It is known as ‘Netherby’. The house has been restored and is on display for the public at certain times. The packing shed and milking facilities are also open for viewing and show a range of historical implements that would have been used during the time that the site was used as a citrus orchard and cattle farm. In 1980 the Fagan family donated the property to the Department of Lands and the Hornsby Shire Council was appointed as the trustee.

The laundry as it was when the home was inhabited in years passed.
The laundry as it was when the home was inhabited in years passed. | Source

Historical Buildings Onsite


  • Netherby, the three bedroom former house of the Fagan family
  • A Machinery Shed
  • A Water Tank;
  • An Old garage
  • Windmill;
  • Old Fruit Packing Shed, a brick and corrugated iron building;
  • Old Dairy Shed, a timber and corrugated iron structure;
  • Two small sheds;
  • Museum Shed, a brick and corrigated iron building;
  • An old animal Hospital

The walk through the historical buildings is fascinating. The buildings are filled with a range of items, some of which are easily recognizable and others less so. These include household items from the period as well as farming tools and machinery - some of which were used by the family. As a whole the restored buildings and artifacts provide an important reference for farming and family life in the area in the 20th Century.

The information gained from the preserved historical areas is considered significant, not only within the local government area but also for the history of Sydney and New South Wales. Such pioneering farmers were responsible for so much of how the state of New South Wales developed and reached the form it is in today.

Gardens of Many Nations

Some of the Gardens in the 'Gardens of Many Nations'

  • Japanese
  • Dutch
  • Chinese
  • Mediterranean
  • African
  • North American
  • South American
  • English
  • Australian

The 'Gardens of Many Nations' is a wonderful way of presenting a wide variety of flora in an appealing way. This area is made up of a number of distinct gardens which each represent a different part of the world. Some of them include water features or buildings to complete the theme. For example, the Japanese garden has a faux tea house and the African garden has a little mock mud hut. The buildings do not tend to be functional but help to give the gardens an authentic feel.

The hut in the American Garden doubles as the toilet amenities.
The hut in the American Garden doubles as the toilet amenities.
The African Garden
The African Garden
The Mediterranean garden
The Mediterranean garden

Carr's Bush

Fagan Park is home to it's very own bush: Carr's Bush
Fagan Park is home to it's very own bush: Carr's Bush

Fagan park also plays a role in preserving threatened and important ecological communities in the Sydney area.The presence of Carr's Bush, in Fagan Park means that the site is home to some Sydney Turpentine Iron bark Forest among other important forest communities . It is also home to 120 species of native flora and various species of wildlife including the Australian Wood Duck, Chestnut Teal, Little Pied Cormorant, and the Black Swan.

Carr's bush also has a 30-minute loop track which is appropriate for walking and cycling.

One of the many inhabitants of Carr's Bush
One of the many inhabitants of Carr's Bush

A Short Tour of The Park

Find Your Way To Fagan Park

A markerFagan Park, Galston -
Fagan Park, 48 Arcadia Road, Sydney NSW 2159, Australia
get directions

Getting There: Take a train from Sydney's Central Station to Pennant Hills Railway Station. From there take the 638 Bus at Stand B to Fagan Park. If you are driving from Sydney's CBD, it takes just under an hour going via the A40.

Opening Hours: Eastern Standard Time: 7 am until sunset, Daylight Savings Time: 7 am - 6.30 pm. Open daily except for Christmas Day

Entry Fee: Free, parking $5/vehicle

All photos taken by Rota unless otherwise noted. All rights reserved.

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    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      readerssquare i really appreciate your kind compliments and observations. thank you.

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      Anne Harrison, thank you very much.

    • readerssquare profile image

      Readers Square 2 years ago from Punjab, India

      This park looks really amazing and could serve as a wonderful spot for a spontaneous walk before an evening snack. Rota it’s your presentation and the photography that has made this hub informatively tantalizing. The Mediterranean Garden has caught my eye and is profusely beautiful enough to stay on my desktop. The Gardens of Many Nations is really astounding and kind of romantic I should say.

    • Anne Harrison profile image

      Anne Harrison 2 years ago from Australia

      I grew up in Sydney but have never been here - thanks for the tip, I will definitely visit! Congratulations on HOTD

    • georgescifo profile image

      georgescifo 2 years ago from India

      Thanks and have a great day ahead..

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      georgescifo thanks so much for your response! glad you enjoyed reading the hub!

    • georgescifo profile image

      georgescifo 2 years ago from India

      Sydney is the first place that I would love to visit if I get a chance to visit Australia. I have read a lot about Sydney and its amazing beauty that can be a treat to watch.

      Once again thanks for sharing this hub about Fagan Park in Sydney and really enjoyed reading it.

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      Ken I Cruz, thankyou so much. This hub was a labour of love for me - I really wanted to share the beauty of this park. Glad you enjoyed!

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      mary615 It is such. a beautiful spot. Hope you get a chance to come over and check Australia out. Thankyou very much

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      ladyguitarpicker I really appreciate that! Thankyou. I love this park so much and hoped to convey it's beauty to each one of you who read it!

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      poetryman6969 You really hit the nail on the head as to why this park is so close to my hear. It's such a wonderful conglomeration of interesting as well as practical, functional aspects that are sadly so often left out in favour of making gardens merely ornamental.

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      Hi bluebird, yes indeed, the Mediterranean garden really stands out. There are lots of bees around it too as there is just so much lavender pack in there. Thank you!

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      Thankyou very much PegCole17! I really fell in love with this park when i first went to it and tried my best to convey it's beauty!

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      Why thank you very much! Thanks for telling me! Have been offline for a few days with computer issues so didn't realise..Yes, I went to the Bushland Shire festival a few years ago and it was such a great day. The best stalls, food, entertainment - and of course location!!

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      Thank you very much. I really felt in touch with the peace and beauty of the park and tried my best to convey that in the article. Hope you have the chance to visit Australia!

    • Ken I Cruz profile image

      Ken 2 years ago from Seattle, WA

      Great top quality hub. Nicely written and informative.

    • mary615 profile image

      Mary Hyatt 2 years ago from Florida

      Your country is on my bucket list. I have a couple of friends who visited Sydney and just raved about it. This is a beautiful park. Great photos, too.

      Voted UP, etc. Congrats on HOTD.

    • ladyguitarpicker profile image

      stella vadakin 2 years ago from 3460NW 50 St Bell, Fl32619

      Nice Hub I really enjoyed it. Stella

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 2 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      It looks totally awesome. I would LOVE to go. Thanks for sharing the great photos!

    • poetryman6969 profile image

      poetryman6969 2 years ago

      It's interesting to have historical buildings and a working vegetable garden as part of this venue.

    • bluebird profile image

      bluebird 2 years ago

      Very interesting hub with beautiful pictures with all the gardens, I especially liked the looks of the Mediterranean Garden.

      Nice job - congrats!

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 2 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      This lovely park is quite interesting and you have presented it beautifully. Congratulations on the Hub of the Day award. Nice work.

    • LongTimeMother profile image

      LongTimeMother 2 years ago from Australia

      Hello, Rota. If I still lived in Sydney I would certainly visit the Bushland Shire Festival. It sounds like a great event.

      Congratulations on HOTD.

    • mio cid profile image

      mio cid 2 years ago from Uruguay

      Beautiful portrayal of a place anyone traveling to Sydney will want to visit . Australia is one of the few countries in the world I would like to travel to , maybe because there were so many Uruguayans who migrated there .

    • Rota profile image
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      Rota 2 years ago

      Great to hear it! It is worth the visit, something there is sure to appeal..Thanks for the comment!

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 2 years ago from Australia

      Most times I have been to Sydney is to work so I never have had the time to 'sight see'! I will add Fagan Park to my 'to do' list next time I visit Sydney it looks like a beautiful Park.

    • Rota profile image
      Author

      Rota 2 years ago

      Thank you very much..I try to put in lotsa useful info in case people from abroad choose to visit. Hope you get the chance to one day!

    • Thomasjames1992 profile image

      Thomas James 2 years ago from London

      Would love to visit Sydney one day! Such good information in this hub

      Thanks

    • Rota profile image
      Author

      Rota 2 years ago

      Alicia C, Your very welcome, it is actually one of the better large parks in the Sydney area, a really nice spot and free to visit - that's always a winner.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This sounds like a very interesting place to visit. I love your photos! Thank you for the enjoyable tour.

    • Rota profile image
      Author

      Rota 2 years ago

      thanks, will head over there now and have a read!

    • traveleze profile image

      Lee John 2 years ago from Preston

      Hi Rota,

      Great Hub! I voted up, also followed you :) i write travel hubs any feedback or comments would be highly appreciated :)

      Thanks

      Lee