Initial white settlement of the area occurred around 1837. The land was used for dairy farming by various landholders between 1847 and 1877 when Samuel Gardiner purchased the property and established a racehorse stud named "Bundoora Park". "Bumdoora" is an aboriginal word meaning "place of many kangaroos". J.M.V. Smith bought the property in 1899 and built the large house known as "Bundoora Homestead" to the southeast of Mount Cooper summit, as well as the stables comprising the Heritage Village.
Between 1930 and 1950, the Park was used by the Victorian Police Remount Depot for horse breeding and as a riding school. Following this period it was used by a neighbouring farm for grazing and crop production.
The Park was established on Crown land by an Order-in-Council of 18 February 1969, which set aside 102 hectares for public recreation. Further grants in 1976, 1979 and 1980s have brought the total Park area to 180 hectares.
Bundoora Park Masterplan 1996, page 14.