These are not your average Botanical Gardens. Aside from the Sculpture Garden, there are no manicured lawns and exotic flowering plants. Instead, what you have is bushland – a place to breathe, and wander, and relax, and remember what it’s like to reconnect with nature after a hard week in the office where you’ve been thinking too much. That last bit came out loud, didn’t it?
Why come? Aside from the breathing, relaxing, reconnecting, and grounding part? The bush walks, of course – gentle enough for all levels of fitness, short enough to fit into a busy day, and interesting enough to make you think you’ve been in the bush.
This track takes you on a round trip around the lagoon.
It’s about 1.2kms – or thereabouts – has a bit of up and down, but is an easy walk. The track is dirt, but well maintained – although I imagine there could be some slippery parts if it’s been raining. There are a few stairs, so I wouldn’t recommend this path for wheelchairs or prams.
There are viewing platforms at a couple of points around the lagoon, and on a clear day the reflections are worth a picture or three.
The Fern Glade is another short walk – about 900m, on a fully accessible concrete path.
A few degrees cooler than the bush track, I’ll be keeping this little oasis in mind on a hot summer’s day.
Another 900m on another fully accessible path, it’s worth a wander.
There are plenty of picnic tables, but no barbecues – you can bring your own, if you want. Oh, and there are no rubbish bins, so make sure you bring something to take your garbage home in. Inconvenient yes, but it’s all about not interfering with the natural feeding patterns of the animals and birds that live in the gardens.
Yes, there are toilets.
Aside from the bush tracks, there are other accessible paths in the gardens.
No dogs are allowed in the gardens.
The gardens are open every day and admission is free.
The gardens are located off Tanawha Tourist Drive. You’ll find more information here.