Thursday, 14 January 2016

Nature in the City: Botanic Gardens

When planning family outings, we seek out nature whenever we can. There's just something special about the sand and sea of a beach, the lush green of a forest, the cooler air of a mountain or the gurgling and gushing of a river that relaxes everyone and lifts one's spirits.

When we don't have time to venture far from home, to get our nature fix, we find ourselves exploring our lovely sub-tropical city. And so it was, on a warm Summer afternoon not long ago, we spent a few hours wandering about in the Mt. Coot-tha Botanic Gardens in Brisbane. 

Diverse, thriving plants surround you in these rambling gardens. We encountered a wonderful array of wildlife, at home among the foliage, and happy to be the focus of a curious boy's attention. Water features prominently too, from a lake blanketed in lilypads to the trickling waterfall and water basin in the Japanese Garden, its liquid presence always feels reflective and calming. 

While one could hurry to try to see everything, we prefer to amble, following the lead of our son as he traces the paths, familiar to him now (after years of visiting this green oasis) and which lead him to his favourite parts of the gardens. Of course, we will end our meandering stroll, as we always do, sitting in the fragrant herb garden, on a wooden bench made for three, eating ice-cream!

Shall we go for a walk together now then? 

Lush, thick plantings near the lake. 

The tall and beautiful trunks of bamboo.

Reaching up to a cloudy sky.

A beautiful, stone rose features in the rose garden.

Are your legs a little weary yet, after walking so far? Come on, there's still much more to see!

A real and fragrant bloom.

 An inquisitive duck impatient for the duck feeding to begin!

 A spiky water dragon (lizard) resting in the water at the edge of the lake. 
(I think he thought he was camouflaged!)

 The roof of the tropical dome, our son's favourite place in the whole garden.

Inside the dome, looking up!

Looking across the dome. 
People toss coins into the water here...perhaps they make wishes!

Tansy growing prolifically in the herb garden.

A rocky path beckons...

And, who could resist rock-hopping across these big stones? Tomorrow I'll lead you across and show you my favourite place in these gardens. It's serene and peaceful and waiting for us.

See you tomorrow.


  1. A visit to the Botanical Gardens when our children were little was always such a highlight. A magical place to explore, smell, see and touch. Your amazing photos show the absolute beauty of these magnificent gardens.

    1. Hi Linda,
      These gardens are a great place for a family to spend a day, just as you did with your children and I have done with mine. What could be better than a picnic by the lake, a stroll along whatever path one chooses to explore, or an ice-cream in the herb garden? I can't think of much else I'd rather do!