Yarra Park is at the heart of Melbourne’s Sports and Entertainment Precinct, and surrounds Australia’s sporting mecca, the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).
The area was first set aside as parklands in 1856, when it was known as the Richmond Paddock and police horses were left here to graze. The first game of Australian Rules football was played here in 1858.
The park is crisscrossed by avenues of trees connecting to Punt Road and Swan Street. Footbridges cross the train lines. On a wander through the park, look out for statues of sporting stars including cricketer Don Bradman, footballer Ron Barassi and athlete Betty Cuthbert.
You’ll also see some scar trees, named for the markings left by the harvesting of bark for canoes by the area's original inhabitants, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation.
The William Barak pedestrian bridge links Yarra Park with Birrarung Marr and Federation Square, providing splendid views of the city.