% visiting the Opera House, hang a right and go for a walk along the harbour foreshore. The Botanical gardens spread down onto the foreshore and you can take lots of different paths up into them. This was where hubby got down on one knee and proposed to me many moons ago :-)
Recently in October 2016, we enjoyed a picnic in the Botanical Gardens. If you have a group of over 20 people you need to book a lawn to host a venue, be it a picnic like we had or a wedding etc. Each lawn is named something - ours was the horse and foal.
Anyway, we had a wonderful picnic lunch for our meet and greet and enjoyed each others company, then took a few group VT pictures with Sydney Harbour in the background. There's nothing better than enjoying company with great friends old and new :o)
Located behind the Opera house the Botanic Gardens & Domain was a fantastic treat! With great views of the Opera House and a jogging path this park is a wonderful location to just explore and get lost in.
The gardens are jammed packed with rare and exotic plants and flowers. Some of the more rarer plants can be found behind metal fences to keep individuals from stealing them. The "Wollemi Pine" is one of the most protected and endangered of the trees found here in the garden. In 1994 one Wollemi Pine was discovered in the Blue Mountain range after being thought extint. You can find a few of the Wollemi Pines planted in the garden. The first tree was grown from a seedling.
There is so much to see and do in the Gardens. You can even have a picnic on one of the many lawns. Throughtout the gardens you will find signs encouraging you "touch trees and step on the grass".
It's hard to imagine a more picturesque location for a park or gardens anywhere in the world. Stretching out east from Circular Quay and the Sydney Opera house, the gardens are a swathe of green over the berms and coves of a once barren patch of scrub. It's a vast space, almost as big as the Central Business District itself, and easy to get lost in. The paths range up and down and through banks of trees both native and foreign, including at least one example of my favourite Australian tree: the baobab. And the views of the harbour, the Opera House and Bridge along the hand hewn rock wall that stretches around Farm Cove, and finishing at the astonishing Macquarie's Chair, are some of the best in the world.
As with any Botanical Garden in Australia, be a little careful, as there are potentially some spiders and snakes in the bushes.
Royal Botanic Gardens
The Royal Botanic Gardens were my first highlight, when I took my very first walk across the centre of town, as it was quite easy to reach from my hotel (Challis Lodge) in a short walk through some sidestreets. The Royal Botanic Gardens are a great place to relax and to learn about exotic plants and animals and for the first time in my life I saw a big crowd of large bats (I think they were flying foxes) hanging down from the trees during the day, taking a rest before they start searching for food at night. There is a certain humming made by them, so you will spot them easily, when walking through that parks .
You will find different sections there such as the Old Mill Garden, a Maiden Pavilion,the Succulent Gardens, the Herbarium,the Rose Garden and Pavilion, Australian Native Rockery, some cafes and lots of benches to relax.
Around these gardens with a size of 30 hectares and an estimated number of 40.000 plants you will also find the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, the Art Gallery of NSW, the Sydney Government House, a building that looks like a scottish castle or Manor House.
And the Sydney Opera House is also just in a short walk from the Botanical gardens.
And what was also quite amazing for me to see were all of the hundreds of people you will see jogging and exercising all day long in the area around the Botanical Gardens.
The entrance to the Royal Botanical Garden is free of charge
and at 10.30am you can also get a free guided tour
and as far as I remember, only a very small part of the garden is locked at night.
We walked from downtown through Hyde Park into Domain Park and then the Botanical Gardens. It is a long jaunt but rewarding, both physically and photographically. This is the place to be on a Saturday afternoon in Sydney. Filled with birds, many ibis, and beautiful people jogging. Passing the swimming pool with tanned bodies, we arrived at the point and gazed on the Opera House. Bring camera with zoom lens and use the gamut of options from wide to tele.
Botanic Garden is situated opposite Sydney Opera House.
It's a big green area in the very heart of the city with many native Australian plants and also plants from other parts of the world.
We were struck by the massive tree trunks we saw there (most were fig trees).
Since the territory is huge we didn't venture everywhere, but what we did see made us wish to go back one day.
One things for phobiacs... we noticed big spider webs with spiders in them practically everywhere, so be careful when posing for a pic too close to the trees/bushes. I doubt any of the spiders were poisonous, but since I have a phobia of spiders..... checked my surroundings very carefully.
We loved the large green expanse behind the Opera House consisting of coastal walks, a botanical garden filled with exceptionally noisy fruit bats, the wide open space of the domain and Hyde Park with its cathedral, prison and monuments. You can easily spend hours here.
The Royal Botanic Gardens cover 30 hectares in a spectacular setting on the shores of Sydney Harbour, with over eleven thousand plant groups from Australia and overseas, on display.
The Intercontinental Hotel overlooks these gardens as can be seen in the photo.
This wrought iron sculpture in the Royal Botanic Gardens looks like a twisted Gazebo. Upon further inspection you will find axes, barbed wire and bones in the sculpture...a bit strange and I don't get the title at all.
The Royal Botanic Gardens, right on the harbour, are a great place to walk around right in the heart of Sydney.
Wonderful harbour views, a thirty hectare park with beautiful trees, shrubs, flowers, water features, statues and heritage listed buildings. You'll see plenty of native birds and bats too.
It's a great place to learn about the plants or to just relax, maybe with a picnic or eating in the restaurant.
The Huntsman and Dogs statue is one of the many statues found in the Botanic Gardens. During our last visit we happened upon this statue. The statue shows the huntsman listening as if he hears a noise in the distance and the dogs are on the alert for potential prey.
During one of our many explorations of the Botanic Gardens we happened upon this statue. The Satyr is a bronze statue by Frank Lynch. A Satyr looks like the mythical Pan creatures but are different creatures altogether.