11 Parks and Gardens for Relaxation in Canberra

Canberra, often referred to as the “Bush Capital,” is celebrated for its abundant green spaces, offering residents and visitors alike a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. With a plethora of meticulously maintained parks and gardens, Canberra provides the perfect backdrop for relaxation and rejuvenation. In this article, we’ll guide you through 11 of the most enchanting parks and gardens in Canberra, each with its own unique charm.

Floriade: Canberra’s Celebration of Spring

Floriade stands as a testament to Canberra’s love affair with spring. This annual event is the largest celebration of spring in Australia and draws crowds from far and wide. The heart of the city is adorned with breathtaking flower displays, showcasing millions of blooms in various themes. Beyond the vibrant flora, Floriade offers live entertainment, workshops, and food stalls for a delightful day out.

Australian National Botanic Gardens: A Haven of Native Plants

Nestled at the base of Black Mountain, the Australian National Botanic Gardens is a sanctuary for native flora. It houses an impressive collection of Australian plants, from rare and endangered species to colorful wildflowers. The winding paths and peaceful settings make it an ideal place for leisurely walks and connecting with nature.

Commonwealth Park: Home to Lake Burley Griffin

Commonwealth Park is not only famous for hosting national celebrations but also for its scenic beauty. Located alongside Lake Burley Griffin, it offers picturesque lakeside walks and cycling paths. The park’s central location makes it a favorite spot for picnics and outdoor gatherings, with iconic views of the Captain Cook Memorial Jet.

Australian National University (ANU) Campus: A Green Oasis

Within the heart of Canberra, the ANU campus surprises visitors with its lush greenery and tranquil ambiance. It’s a perfect place for a leisurely stroll, surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens, sculptures, and an array of public art installations.

Australian National University (ANU) Botanic Gardens

While on the ANU campus, don’t miss the separate ANU Botanic Gardens, a hidden gem offering unique plant collections and an opportunity to learn about native and exotic species. The gardens are both educational and serene, providing a calm escape from the urban surroundings.

Lennox Gardens: Serenity Alongside the Lake

Lennox Gardens, situated on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin, offers a serene setting for relaxation. It’s a popular spot for picnics and lakeside walks. Within the gardens, you’ll find the Japanese-themed Nara Peace Park, featuring cherry blossoms and traditional Japanese sculptures.

Cockington Green Gardens: A Miniature Wonderland

For a truly unique experience, visit Cockington Green Gardens. This charming attraction showcases a meticulously crafted miniature village with tiny buildings and stunning landscapes. Explore the intricacies of this miniature wonderland and be amazed by the attention to detail.

Weston Park: Lakeside Picnic and Play

Weston Park is a family-friendly destination offering a variety of activities. With numerous playgrounds, barbecue areas, and sandy beaches along Lake Burley Griffin, it’s perfect for a day of family fun. Enjoy a picnic by the water and let the kids run free in this idyllic setting.

National Arboretum Canberra: A Forest of Possibilities

The National Arboretum Canberra is a testament to the city’s commitment to preserving biodiversity. It boasts an incredible collection of trees from around the world, including the striking Himalayan Cedar forest. Visitors can explore the arboretum’s vast landscapes, join guided walks, and participate in events that celebrate nature.

Stromlo Forest Park: Adventure and Nature

For outdoor enthusiasts, Stromlo Forest Park is a paradise. It offers a plethora of activities, from mountain biking and equestrian trails to a world-class observatory. Whether you’re seeking adventure or simply want to connect with nature, this park has something for everyone.

Black Mountain Peninsula: A Waterside Retreat

Black Mountain Peninsula provides a peaceful retreat along the shores of Lake Burley Griffin. It’s a fantastic place for water-based activities like kayaking and paddleboarding. The walking trails offer beautiful views of the lake and surrounding landscapes, making it a favorite among locals.

Glebe Park: Historic Charm

Glebe Park holds historical significance and is a charming place to unwind. Stroll through its well-maintained gardens, admire the sculptures, and enjoy the tranquility of this hidden gem.


In conclusion, Canberra’s parks and gardens are a testament to the city’s commitment to green spaces and environmental preservation. Whether you’re captivated by the vibrant blooms of Floriade, the native flora of the Australian National Botanic Gardens, or the miniature world of Cockington Green Gardens, you’ll find endless opportunities for relaxation and rejuvenation right at your doorstep in Canberra.

FAQs for Parks and Gardens in Canberra

1. Are there any admission fees for visiting these parks and gardens?

  • Most of the mentioned parks and gardens are free to enter, with the exception of some special events or attractions within them.

2. Can I bring pets to these parks and gardens?

  • In general, pets are not allowed in these parks and gardens to protect the local flora and fauna. However, there are designated dog-friendly areas in some parks.

3. Are these parks and gardens wheelchair-accessible?

  • Many of these parks and gardens offer wheelchair-accessible pathways and facilities. However, it’s advisable to check with each specific location for detailed accessibility information.

4. Are there guided tours available at these attractions?

  • Some of these parks and gardens offer guided tours, especially during special events or seasonal blooms. Check with the respective attraction for tour availability.

5. Can I have a picnic in these parks and gardens?

  • Yes, many of these locations provide picnic areas where visitors can enjoy a meal surrounded by nature.

6. Are there restroom facilities available in these parks and gardens?

  • Yes, most of these parks and gardens have restroom facilities for visitors.

7. Can I bring my own food and drinks to these parks and gardens?

  • Yes, you’re generally allowed to bring your own food and drinks for picnics. However, please dispose of trash responsibly.

8. Are these parks and gardens open year-round?

  • Most of these parks and gardens are open year-round, but some may have seasonal closures or reduced hours during winter.

9. Can I visit these attractions at night?

  • Nighttime visits are generally not recommended as most of these parks and gardens close in the evening. However, some events or special occasions may offer nighttime access.

10. Are there any events or festivals held in these parks and gardens throughout the year? – Yes, many of these locations host events, festivals, and seasonal displays. Check their respective websites for event schedules and details.

11. Is parking available at these parks and gardens? – Yes, most of these locations offer parking facilities for visitors. Be sure to check parking availability and any associated fees.

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