|A favourite pastime is eating outdoors and soaking up life’s simple pleasures with a picnic. This summer, roll out the picnic rug and gourmet produce with family and friends as you kick back at one of Melbourne’s many picnic destinations:|
Royal Botanic Gardens
Home to over 12,000 different plant species, the Royal Botanic Gardens (RBG) is a natural sanctuary for native wildlife, and has many areas to set up your picnic including the Ornamental Lake, the Water Conservation Garden and the Rose Pavilion. There are many shady trees to enjoy your fresh food under. And to top it off, take two to three hours at a medium pace to walk around the entire gardens.
A visitor’s centre for the gardens can be found opposite the Shrine of Remembrance. Open daily from 9am–5.30pm, the centre can provide details about the gardens and guided tours.
Royal Botanic Gardens @ OnlyMelbourne
Anderson Street, Alexandra and Birdwood Avenues
South Yarra Vic 3141
Ph: 03 9252 2300
Situated between Fitzroy Gardens and Spring Street are the small and peaceful Treasury Gardens. This is the ideal place for a planned day out enjoying Melbourne’s sun and even for city workers to relax in their lunch break.
While picnicking, take a stroll around the gardens to see the Robert Burns memorial honouring the famous Scottish poet; an ornamental pond with a monument to President John F. Kennedy; and a memorial statue of distinguished Melbourne citizen Sir William Clarke.
The Treasury Gardens are one of a number of gardens and small ornamental reserves that create a landscaped setting for Victoria’s Parliament House. Many old trees, such as the fine avenue of Moreton Bay figs, survive from the Gardens’ earliest period.
Spring Street, Treasury Place, Lansdowne Street, Wellington Parade
Melbourne, Vic 3000 (East Boundary of CBD)
Fitzroy Gardens are one of the major 19th century landscaped city gardens in Australia and form a wonderful transition between the city and East Melbourne. The Gardens are a popular tourist attraction, with historic buildings, sculptures and horticulture, and are bounded by Clarendon Street, Albert Street, Lansdowne Street, and Wellington Parade. Several buildings of historical significance can be seen at the Fitzroy Gardens. These include: Cook’s Cottage; the Conservatory; and Sinclair’s Cottage.
The carved Fairies’ Tree and the Scarred Tree (a remnant of Aboriginal culture) are fabulous places to roll out your picnic rug and soak up the fresh air, as well as the ornamental follies – the Temple of the Winds Rotunda and the old Bandstand.
Fitzroy Gardens @ OnlyMelbourne
Clarendon Street, Albert Street, Lansdowne Street, and Wellington Parade
Melbourne, Vic 3002
With its central city location, the Flagstaff Gardens makes for the perfect picnic spot for local workers, tourists and locals to take time out of their day. With its close proximity to the Queen Victoria Market, it is ideal to buy your picnic basket goodies from the many market storeholders who sell gourmet, high quality produce and walk down to the gardens , place yourself under a shady tree and enjoy the food, sounds and ambience that the surrounds offers.
Stroll around after filling your tum to see the Caretaker’s Cottage; the Pioneers’ Memorial; the Separation Monument; a sundial and bronze sculpture as well as a great view of Melbourne’s new entertainment and dining district, the Docklands. This oasis in the middle of the CBD also has a rose bed and a scented garden that provides a wonderful sensory experience.
Flagstaff Gardens @ OnlyMelbourne
Dudley St, King St, William St, La Trobe St
West Melbourne, Vic 3003
The Alexandra Gardens sit on the edge of the Yarra River at the foot of Princes Bridge, just across from the CBD. These beautiful and historic gardens form part of the Domain Parklands and were first laid out in 1904. The Gardens are just as popular today as they always were, with water sports, walkers and a range of events, including the Melbourne Moomba Waterfest, held every March since the late 1950s.
Picnic at Henley and Engineer’s Lawns to see Melbourne’s beautiful scenery. After a relaxing bite to eat, wander over to see the historic rowing boathouses; the ornamental gardens with palms and shrub borders; and a star-shaped garden bed which was designed to represent the Federation of Australia.
Domain Parklands @ OnlyMelbourne
Located in Domain Parklands, Alexandra Avenue
Southbank, Vic 3006
With the longer days that Daylight Savings brings, you can venture out of the CBD for your picture-perfect picnic destination. The many grassy areas at the wineries in the Mornington Peninsula and Yarra Valley are top choice.
De Bortoli Winery
De Bortoli Winery has to be my favourite destination for a picnic. As you drive through the Yarra Valley, why not pick up some gastronomic delights like freshly baked bread from a bakery in town, a delicious cheese spread from the Yarra Valley Dairy, and when you arrive to De Bortoli Winery, select some wonderful additions to your picnic basket like more gourmet cheeses made on the premises, jams and of course wine varieties. Open up your blanket on the hilltop and picnic with family and friends with full view of lush green fields and clean air.
Pinnacle Lane, Dixons Creek, Vic 3775
Ph: 03 5965 2271
Review By Monica