Sometimes when life gets a big stressful, and you feel like you’ll never escape the hamster wheel of work and bills, you’ve got to stop and smell the roses. Literally.
If you don’t know any gardens or beautiful public parks near you, your local council or city guide website is a great place to start. They’ll also tell you about important stuff like parking and if there are any opening hours.
Otherwise; ask your mates! Someone is bound to know a cool, secret garden somewhere that is totally off your radar.
But how to get the most out of your garden visit? If you’re nerds like us you could research it a bit more before you go. Bigger gardens often have websites you can hit up for maps, features of interest and history.
Oh yes, gardens have history! Some of them quite a lot. I don’t know about you, but I get a little thrill when I’m looking at a rose bush planted by someone in colonial times. Really old trees are cool too – fascinating to think who has enjoyed their shade over the decades – or centuries!
What should you take? Well we feel like a bit of a broken record, but as usual if you’re going out in the Australian sun, sunscreen, a hat and water are necessities. Add comfy walking shoes and a camera and you’re nearly set.
The last items we recommend? A picnic blanket and some goodies to eat and drink of course! What better way to enjoy a lovely park or garden than to linger a while with cheese and biscuits?
Recently my mum and I were driving in Toowoomba at a loose end recently and she suggested we hit up Newtown Park for an Instagram session. I grew up in the area but had never visited the roses there! We were rewarded with fragrant blooms and gorgeous gardens.
Of course the biggest and best annual “garden party” in Australia is Toowoomba’s Carnival of Flowers. Not only does the city turn on a colourful display in its public parks (and roundabouts!) but many private gardens are opened up to the public. Definitely worth the trip up the range of you’ve never seen the spectacle before!
In Brisbane, the two biggest and most spectacular public gardens are the City Botanical Gardens in Alice St (established in the early 1800s), and the newer version Brisbane Botanic Gardens at Mt Coot-tha. Both can be enjoyed by anyone and promise a pleasant and relaxing way to kill a few hours on a sunny weekend.