It’s no secret I’m a plant/nature lover, so obviously the Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne would be right up my alley. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the size and beauty of this sanctuary, and I can confidently say it is not just a place for those obsessed with all things green. In fact, our afternoon at the Melbourne botanical gardens was probably the most relaxing of the trip.
This place is like Melbourne’s Central Park — it is a peaceful green space, right in the heart of the city, that is ideal for escaping metropolitan chaos. And with a population nearing 5 million, some experts are predicting Melbourne will eventually surpass the size of Sydney as the largest city in Australia, so it definitely has it’s chaos.
The botanical gardens boast a long network of paths that allowed us to walk around for quite a while before getting to the spot we started at, and I don’t even think we covered the park in it’s entirety. We entered the park near this beautiful building known as the Gardens House. It has it’s own gardens surrounding it and hosts private events/weddings.
Different areas of the park were home to plants from different regions of the world. For example there was a bamboo forest, a Southern African collection, and we also went into a tropical glasshouse filled with plants from tropical regions of the world.
There were definitely people around, but on this particular weekday it was not too busy, and the park was quiet. People were having picnics, going for strolls, and clearly really taking time to enjoy the space.
Right near a pond where people were taking Venetian-style gondolas, there is a place called The Terrace. It has an indoor/outdoor seating area with a vendor selling food, drinks, and booze. I wouldn’t recommend planning on grabbing a bite here as the selection of food was not the best, but it’s not a bad spot to have a glass of wine.
Walking through the paths, chatting, then sitting and having a beverage, all while taking in the sights of a place that is peaceful, yet filled with life — it was one of my most enjoyable days in Australia. So while the name ‘Royal Botanic Gardens’ might have you thinking this place is just a bunch of flowers, don’t be fooled. The gardens are just part of an expansive park where you can take time to unplug, slow down, and do nothing but enjoy your surroundings and the people you’re with.