I am surprised how long it took me to get around to visiting Epping Aquatic Centre. Please don’t make the same mistake! The centre is a lovely place for a splash with the family, particularly young ones, and has a decent set of swimming facilities.
Thankfully the pools weren’t demolished by Hornsby Council so we can all still enjoy a swim in the tranquil bush setting. They were re-opened in October 2016 by City of Parramatta Council, following the Council boundary changes. Now Epping Aquatic Centre is sadly Parramatta Council’s only swimming centre, with the transfer of Granville Pools to Cumberland Council and the demolishing of Parramatta Pools. Details on the new swimming centre to be built in Parramatta can be found here.
The new masterplan for Dence Park is almost finalised. You can view the concept designs and have your say on them until 5th July 2019.
Shaded Baby/ Toddler Pool
At the end of the centre, around to the right from the 50m pool, you will find a shaded baby/ toddler pool about 4m by 5m and a depth of about 15-20cm. It is a perfect size, as the little ones are able to sit in it with their heads well above the water and yet still have great fun splashing, while you can be within easy reach at all times. There are naturally shaded benches along the side and a grassed area at the back.
Next to the baby pool is another pool for kids that is perfect for young kids who aren’t confident swimmers as well as families with little ones. Unlike the baby pool, adults can also sit or swim around in the water.
In the shallow end, it is about knee high for an adult and up to an adults thighs in the deep end. And about 5m by 20m.
This pool doesn’t have a shade cloth and is in the full sun in the morning. But by about 12:30pm in summer, there is a good amount of natural shade from the surrounding trees.
On the way back to the entrance is the covered and enclosed program pool, which is only open for swimming classes. At the entrance to the centre is the six lane 50m pool.
All pools are heated, though to varying temperatures. When we went the kids pools were 25.5 and the 50m pool 28 – which I thought was around the wrong way.
During the 2017/2018 summer school holidays, there was a giant inflatable obstacle course every Wednesday and Saturday from 11am to 2pm. There is no additional charge to use it. For the 2019 summer holidays, at this stage, the inflatable will only be out on 17th January.
Keep in mind that only people who demonstrate they can swim 25m, can have a turn of the giant inflatable. Just speak to the life guide and they will watch you and then give you a wrist band.
There are warm showers and plenty of change rooms. They are a bit of a warren though that I found confusing at first. The change rooms are on the upper level and then showers and toilets are on the next level down (well at least for the ladies). For the ladies at least, you need to press a button to get warm water. And make sure you press the right one, as I accidentally turned off the warm water on someone else. 🙁
There is also a disable/ family change room at the end of the 50m pool, near the program pool
The BIG downside for families, with little ones and a pram, is the lack of a ramp down to the pool. The staff informed me though that they are happy to help you take your pram down the stairs. And the pools are NOT accessible by wheel chair.
At the reception, you can purchase hot and cold drinks as well as a ice creams and snacks and there are some tables to sit at. They also have a kiosk set up at the northern end of the 50m pool sometimes over summer.
Fees and Entry
To enter any City of Parramatta swimming centre, you need an access card. They are issued free to all casual visitors, of high school age and above. To get an access card, you just need to complete a short registration form at our reception and have your photo taken.
Epping Aquatic and Leisure Centre is a seasonal facility, closing over the winter months. The great new though is that Parramatta Council have decided to trial keep the pools open this winter on a trial basis. This is the first time since 2013 that this has happened.
Summer hours are from October until mid-April:
- Monday to Friday: 5:30am – 7:45pm
- Weekends: 7am – 7pm
Winter hours are from 15th April to 6th October 2019:
- Monday, Wednesday and Friday 5:30am – 9:30am
- Tuesday and Thursday 8:30am – 12:30pm & 3:30pm – 7pm
- Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays 8am – 12pm
- Adult (18 years and over): $6.20
- Students and children over 5yrs: $4.60
- Children under 5yrs: FREE
- Concession / pensioners: $3.50
- Spectators: $3.30
- Family (2 adults + 2 children OR 1 adult, 3 children): $19.60
- Family (2 adults + 5 or 6 children): $28.80
- Adult 20 Visit Pass $111.20
- Student 20 Visit Pass $83.45
- Child/Pensioner 20 Visit Pass $83.45
Finding Epping Aquatic Centre
The centre is located in Dence Park. It is about a 1km walk east of Epping train station and just south of Epping Road.
There is a lot of free on-site parking behind the community hall. Please be aware that it is steep walk down to the pools along a path (about 50m), though doable with a pram.
Places of Interest Nearby
Looking for some other ways to cool down with the family? Check out our ultimate free water fun guide.