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The name says it all. Parks, bushland and the Plenty River define this pretty suburb.

Its starting point is just north of the Western Ring Road, but you’ll think you’re miles from civilisation as you follow the Plenty River Trail. It traces the course of the waterway, passing playgrounds, sports fields, century-old fruit trees that remain from old orchards and even the remains of an early swimming pool built into the river. Take a break at Kalparrin Gardens, where the lake has been rejuvenated.

If all that water has you and the kids yearning for a swim, head to WaterMarc. This fitness and aquatic centre has lap pools, toddler pools with sprays and fountains, water slides and an adventure playground. You can let them zip down the rapids while you take it easy in the steam room or spa.

When it’s time to eat, try the modern, organic offerings at Two Young Boys. On the menu, which includes tasty dishes like cauliflower fritters and beef curry, there are plenty of choices for vegetarians and those who eat gluten free.

Spice up a trip to Greensborough at pretty Peppercorn Thai. All the favourites, from fish cakes to jungle curry, are there, and the chilli symbols on the menu let you know the heat factor of each dish.

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