Concrete jungle or urban oasis? Get the best of both in Melbourne this spring, with city streets leading to open green spaces and blooms popping up both far and wide.
Chase the fresh air and the wildness of nature at our favourite places to stop and smell the roses.
Take a break from the hectic pace of the city and discover abundant, leafy gardens. At the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, enjoy floral displays, manicured lawns and ancient alms, while Carlton Gardens is renowned for its cooling fountain and heritage architecture.
Image: Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne
Discover old-world charm at Fitzroy Gardens in East Melbourne and marvel at the historic Captain Cook’s Cottage, the carved Fairies Tree and model Tudor Village, as well as the shady avenues of stately trees and captivating conservatory.
Image: Conservatory at Fitzroy Gardens
Other expansive spots include Flagstaff Gardens, which is the perfect spot for a picnic with its proximity to fresh produce and tasty treats at the Queen Victoria Market, and heritage-listed Treasury Gardens, Victoria’s oldest public garden known for its foliage of conifers and palms and backdrop of elms and oaks.
Visit one of Melbourne’s most iconic landmarks, The Shrine of Remembrance and reflect on the sacrifices made by war veterans with a peaceful stroll through the 13-hectare reserve surrounding the monument, soaking up breathtaking views of Melbourne’s skyline and bursts of vibrant green parkland.
In the neighbourhoods
Jump on a train or tram and explore Melbourne’s eclectic neighbourhood gardens. Head to South Yarra to Como House and Garden and get a taste of high society with a tour of the heritage home and wander around the beautifully maintained gardens. Nearby Rippon Lea Estate is another grand way to discover manicured English-style gardens and heritage architecture.
Image: Rippon Lea Estate
Head towards the water and marvel at St Kilda’s seaside grassy attractions. Eat an ice cream at O’Donnell Gardens next to the iconic Luna Park or stroll through towering palms at Catani Gardens.
Alternatively, travel south-west of the city to Werribee and admire the kaleidoscope of colour when 5,000 roses bloom at the Victoria State Rose Garden, or experience the grandeur of Werribee Mansion and the formal gardens, complete with an ornamental lake.
Get away from the city for a day and visit some lively green spaces within an hour of Melbourne’s hustle and bustle.
Image: Royal Botanic Gardens, Cranbourne
Just 45-minutes south-east of Melbourne is the Cranbourne iteration of the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. Here, discover the astonishing beauty and diversity of over 170,000 native plants, displayed in settings that capture the beauty of Australia, including the red centre and coastal fringes.
Escape to a lush haven of fern glades, towering forests and vibrant spring colour in the Dandenong Ranges. Reacquaint yourself with the whimsy of nature in lush gullies surrounded by misty mountain ashes at the Alfred Nicholas Memorial Garden and see lively floral displays at the Dandenong Ranges Botanic Garden. In spring, see Silvan come to life at the Tesselaar Tulip Festival.
Image: Tesselaar Tulip Festival, Silvan