Immersive nature play, on-water recreation, live music and tree planting will mark Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve’s first public opening on 11 December 2021.

Happy Valley opening news

The highly anticipated opening of Happy Valley Reservoir Reserve is almost here. After 120 years, this gorgeous spot will be open to the public for the first time on 11 December 2021. We’re celebrating with an action-packed day of live entertainment, family activities and interactive nature play.

Get active

Bring your own kayak or canoe and explore over 110 hectares of water and shoreline from 10.15am on the opening day. There are also kayaks for hire, paddling lessons and reservoir tours courtesy of Paddle SA.

Immerse yourself in nature

Discover the magic of this 600-hectare natural refuge, home to native wildlife, land and water birds, freshwater fish, insect and plant life. Activities on the day will include:

  • A sustainable play space
  • Watercolour painting workshops
  • Clay decorations
  • Guided nature walks
  • Interactive experiences with water bugs and other live invertebrates

Visitors will have the opportunity to make their mark by planting a tree in a designated revegetation area. Visit your tree regularly and watch it grow.

Dive into digital

An augmented reality trail and geocaching trail will be launched on opening day and become permanent features of the reserve.

The augmented reality trail transforms the natural environment into a digital playground, with fun educational games delivered to your mobile device as you move through the landscape.

Hunt for outdoor treasure using GPS-enabled devices to interact with our geocache trail. Explore on foot or hire a mountain bike free of charge on the day.

Eat, drink and be merry

A range of food trucks will serve delicious food and freshly brewed coffee throughout the day. The main event hub will feature a stage to host live music and entertainment throughout the day, with a spectacular view of the reservoir as the perfect backdrop.

What to know

Where and when to arrive

Gates open at 9am ready for the formal opening ceremony at 9.30am. Scheduled events will run until 3pm, with the reservoir reserve remaining open until 8pm as it will throughout the summer season.

There will be two car parks available as well as several pedestrian entries. Accessible parking is available for people with a disability permit.

One will be accessed on the western side, within the 60 km/hr zone of Chandlers Hill Road and the other from the southern side, off the roundabout connecting Kenihans Road to Chandlers Hill Road.

A kayak drop off zone will be established at the western entry to allow people to drop their kayaks or canoes close to the water’s edge before parking their vehicle nearby. You can push out from 10.15am for a paddle.

Preserving our natural environment

To help preserve the excellent quality and safety of your drinking water and to protect native wildlife, conditions of access apply.

Dogs are not permitted in reservoir reserves – even on leashes. Please leave them at home. Swimming, camping and horse riding are not permitted, and anglers must have a recreational fishing permit. On water activities are limited to non-motorised kayaks and canoes.

Full conditions of access can be read here.