For thousands of years Aboriginal people have been visiting Mooro Katta or Kaarta Gar-up, two of the many names for Mount Eliza, the highest point of Kings Park.
Noongar is the generic term for Indigenous people of the southwest of Western Australia. The area at the base of Kings Park, known as Goonininup, was an important ceremonial and dreaming area for Aboriginal males.
The Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority is committed to honouring the Indigenous culture associated with Kings Park and Botanic Garden and Bold Park. Further information can be found in the Authority's Reconciliation Action Plan.
Nestled in the heart of the State Botanic Garden, is the stone amphitheatre Beedawong; meaning 'celebration' or 'meeting place'. A tiered performance area, Beedawong was designed by Noongar artist Richard Walley and landscape architects Plan E. It is used as a venue for ongoing Noongar cultural activities including storytelling, dance performances and quiet reflection. It is also a popular location for Kings Park Festival activities in September. It is an ideal location for weddings, community groups and film and photography.
Boodja Gnarning Walk
Kings Park and Botanic Garden is home to a diverse range of flora and landscapes, all of which were understood and used for survival by the native Aboriginal people of the South-West, the Noongar people. The Boodja Gnarning Walk captures some of this knowledge and explores Noongar use of the land. Interpretive signage panels provide information and artworks from the Noongar people for visitors to follow while experiencing a selection of Kings Park’s significant attractions.
Kings Park Education celebrates the Park’s Indigenous connection through a selection of exciting, curriculum based school programs. 'Chunyart and the Cheeky Parrot' follows the story of an Aboriginal boy and his cheeky friend and is the perfect introduction for young children to basic Noongar language and activities.
The history of Kings Park, including its Indigenous heritage, is highlighted in 'From Firesticks to Fireworks'.
Aboriginal cultural experiences
Aboriginal cultural experiences and tours are now available for Kings Park visitors. The tours are led by experienced and knowledgeable tour operators who have a strong family connection to this country and a deep understanding of their culture and knowledge of the land.
The 'Aboriginal Life' brochure provides more information about Noongar history, including the Dreamtime, six Noongar seasons and map of significant locations in Kings Park and Botanic Garden. It is available from the Visitor Information Centre or downloadable from the brochures section.
A Noongar glossary is available for local Aboriginal words that are used by the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority within this website. The Authority uses Noongar terms for naming some facilities and native plants in order to recognise and honour Aboriginal connections with the land known as Mooro Kaarta (Kings Park).
You can listen by clicking the play button below or download the file to your mp3 player.
ABC radio interview with Dr Richard Walley
Download interview audio file (5 MB)
Read transcript summary
Traditional didgeridoo music, performed by Dr Richard Walley
Download traditional music (4 MB)