When looking for free botanical gardens near me, check out this list of the best gardens in Melbourne and Victoria to choose from. All these beautiful gardens are less than a one-hour drive from Melbourne CBD and are likely close to you.
If you are looking for fun and free school holiday activities in Melbourne, botanical gardens are just what you need! Get away from the busy city life to explore and discover the beautiful gardens in Melbourne. Bring along a picnic or enjoy a BBQ after a botanical garden walk.
If you're in for a longer trip and want to enjoy your family time, check out the best picnic spots Melbourne and regional Victoria can provide.
Some of the most beautiful botanical gardens in Melbourne & surrounds are:
Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne CBD
Fitzroy Gardens - Melbourne CBD
St Kilda Botanical Gardens - Melbourne CBD
Williamstown Botanic Gardens - Melbourne South-West
Maranoa Gardens - Melbourne East
Victoria State Rose Garden - Melbourne South-West
Werribee Park Mansion - Melbourne South-West
Melton Botanic Garden - Melbourne West
Wilson Botanic Park - Melbourne South-East
George Pentland Botanic Gardens - Melbourne South-West
Ashcombe Maze And Lavender Gardens - Mornington Peninsula
Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne
Looking for free things to do in Melbourne school holidays? The Royal Botanic Gardens is a great choice! It's one of the best free activities for kids and families in the City and is a great place for dog walking and wheelchair access.
The Royal Botanical Gardens are some of the most diverse and beautiful in Melbourne and offer free admission to everyone.
Discover more details about this beautiful flower garden below.
Royal Botanic Gardens Address:
Birdwood Ave, South Yarra VIC 3141. 📍Royal Botanic Gardens details & directions
Royal Botanic Gardens Opening Hours:
1st October – 31 March: 7:30am to 7:30pm daily
1st April – 30th September: 7:30pm to 5:30pm daily
Royal Botanic Gardens Entry Fee:
The Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne has no admission fee (free garden).
Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne Map:
A map of the Royal Botanical Gardens is just a mouse click away. Download the Royal Botanical Gardens Melbourne map here before your visit.
Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne Highlights
The Royal Botanic Gardens are a must-see in Melbourne City. The beautiful 94-acre garden is home to 50,000 individual plants in various themed sections that you can explore:
Guilfoyle's Volcano is a succulent and cactus wonderland surrounding a historical water reservoir with spectacular views of Melbourne City.
Fern Gully (South Yarra) is a lush microclimate tropical forest where you can enjoy a peaceful walk under the canopy of ferns and other trees.
Royal Botanic Gardens Free Guided Tour helps discover the highlights of the Botanic Gardens. It's a free 1h 30min tour. The minimum age to participate is 8 years old.
Ian Potter Foundation Children’s Garden at Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne is a super fun activity for kids! The fully fenced-off area makes the garden safe for kids to run around and explore nature while the parents relax.
Children's Garden opening hours:
During the Melbourne school holidays: Open from 10am to sunset, 7 days/week
During the school term: Open from 10am to sunset, Wednesday to Sunday and public holidays. Closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
Cafes: Jardin Tan (open daily from 8am to 3pm) and The Terrace (Cafe open Fri – Sun, 9.30am – 3.30pm; Kiosk open daily from 9.30am to 3.30pm)
Seating around the park
Royal Botanical Gardens Dogs:
At the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, dogs are allowed on a leash everywhere except:
The Ian Potter Foundation Children’s Garden
BBQ At Botanical Gardens:
BBQs cannot be held in the gardens. Feel free to bring a picnic to enjoy with family and friends instead.
Not permitted activities at Botanical Gardens:
The following activities are also not allowed in the gardens:
Bike or scooter riding
Damaging or removing plants
Rollerblading or skateboarding
Climbing trees or plants
All areas of the Melbourne Gardens are wheelchair-accessible and accessible by walkers except:
Melbourne Observatory because of its historically narrow entrances;
Fern Gully is not recommended due to uneven path structures and narrow pathways.
Wheelchairs are available 9am – 5pm daily, for a $50 refundable cash deposit required at pick up. Call +61 3 9252 2429 to book.
Fitzroy Gardens is one of the best parks and stunning gardens in Melbourne. It's perfect for a BBQ and picnic, and you can take your dog with you! The scenery is beautiful, and there's lots of Fitzroy Gardens history to explore.
The best time to visit Melbourne Fitzroy Gardens is in spring and autumn and enjoy amazing autumnal colours and colourful trees.
Fitzroy Gardens Address:
Wellington Parade, East Melbourne VIC 3002. 📍Fitzroy Gardens details & directions.
Fitzroy Gardens Opening Hours:
Fitzroy Botanical Gardens are always open.
Fitzroy Gardens Conservatory Opening Hours:
The Conservatory is open 9 am - 5 pm daily (5.30pm daylight saving)
The Conservatory is closed on Christmas Day (25th December)
Fitzroy Gardens Entry Fee:
Fitzroy Botanical Garden is free!
Fitzroy Gardens Map:
Save this printable map to plan your Fitzroy Gardens visit, whether you're a first-timer or a regular. You can see the original Fitzroy Gardens map here and hover over the mouse to see the Fitzroy Gardens facilities.
Fitzroy Gardens Melbourne Highlights:
At Fitzroy Gardens Melbourne, you will find flower gardens, ponds, and more enchanting sights among the lush trees lining the paths. A leisurely stroll around the gardens is the best way to take in all the wonders. Expect to be back to discover what you didn't notice before!
Here are the things to do at Melbourne Fitzroy Gardens:
Fitzroy Gardens Conservatory opened its doors in March 1930 and is home to gorgeous indoor floral displays that are changed five times each year. Experience magnificent and unique flowers all year round here.
Cook’s Cottage was originally built in Yorkshire, England, in 1755 by the parents of Captain James Cook. Cooks’ Cottage was brought to Melbourne by Sir Russell Grimwade in 1934. Each brick was individually numbered, packed into barrels and shipped to Australia, along with the cuttings of the original ivy coverings.
You can explore this historic oddity at Fitzroy Gardens and learn about its British origins and relocation to Melbourne. Visit the cottage garden nearby with medicinal herbs and remedies, and pose for some photos in 18th-century costumes. Entry fees apply.
Fairy Tree @ Fitzroy Gardens by Ola Cohn is a must-see Melbourne attraction for kids. Marvel at the beautiful carvings on the stump of one of the original Red Gum trees in the Gardens, which has been there for over 300 years.
The Fairies Tree Fitzroy Gardens has been a favourite of children and visitors to the botanical gardens since Ola Cohn carved it between 1931-34. The fairy tree is home to many Australian animals, birds and bush spirits, each one intricately carved into the stump of one of the original Red Gum trees in the gardens.
I have carved in a tree in the Fitzroy Gardens for you and the fairies, but mostly for the fairies and those who believe in them, for they will understand how necessary it is to have a fairy sanctuary - a place that is sacred and safe as a home should be to all living creatures."
- Ola Cohn
Model Tudor Village @ Fitzroy Gardens is a miniature village with model buildings representing a typical village built during the "Tudor" period of English history.
The delightful Fitzroy Gardens Tudor Village houses various cottages, barns, a church, a school, a hotel, and other public buildings. It also includes a miniature model of Shakespeare's home and Anne Hathaway’s cottage.
Fitzroy Gardens Playground is a small but fun playground in Melbourne CBD with unique animal-themed play equipment and climbing structures, including a sleeping dragon slide and giraffe swings.
Fitzroy Gardens Facilities:
Fitzroy Gardens Visitor Center (open daily from 9am to 5pm, closed on Christmas Day)
Fitzroy Gardens Cafe at Visitor's Center
Dogs At Fitzroy Gardens Melbourne:
Dogs are allowed on a leash on the paths. You need to clean up after your dog.
Flat paths are suitable for wheelchairs and prams.
St Kilda Botanical Gardens
If you're looking for a relaxing day out with your kids and family, St Kilda Botanical Gardens Melbourne is the perfect spot. This lovely garden was opened in 1859 and is home to many unique seasonal and local indigenous plants.
St Kilda Botanical Gardens Address:
11 Herbert St, St Kilda VIC 3182. 📍St Kilda Botanical Gardens details & directions
St Kilda Botanical Gardens Opening Hours:
Open between sunrise and sunset, seven days a week.
St Kilda Botanical Gardens Entry Fee:
The garden is free!
St Kilda Botanical Gardens Parking:
There is plenty of free parking around the perimeter of the park. However, during busy times, parking can be difficult to find.
St Kilda Botanical Gardens Map:
Save this printable St Kilda Botanical Gardens Map to visit еthis beautiful flower park in Melbourne. This map of St Kilda Botanical Gardens was designed by Geospatial Science students at RMIT.
St Kilda Botanic Gardens Highlights:
Enjoy a stroll around this beautiful garden to see many unique seasonal and local indigenous plants, the Rain Man Fountain, an Ornamental pond, Conservatory, a rose garden and other features like:
Giant Chess Board. The gardens have a giant chess board and normal-sized chess tables for visitors to enjoy a chess game.
St Kilda Botanical Gardens Playground is a great place to take the kids to play and run around. This wonderful playground features everything from climbing structures to swings and slides, ensuring that your little ones will never be bored. And with plenty of space to run around, they'll get plenty of exercise, too. So bring the whole family down to the park for some good old-fashioned fun or a picnic!
St Kilda Botanic Garden Facilities:
Benches / Seating
Picnic areas (No BBQs)
Public and accessible toilets
St Kilda Botanical Gardens Dogs:
Dogs are allowed on a leash
Dogs are not permitted within 5 metres of the playground.
Prohibited Activities At St Kilda Gardens:
BBQs, camping and cycling are not allowed in St Kilda Gardens
Please do not feed the animals in the park.
The paths at St Kilda Gardens are accessible for wheelchairs and prams.
Williamstown Botanic Gardens
Williamstown Botanical Gardens is one of the most beautiful gardens in Victoria and is a great place to spend a few hours with the kids and family surrounded by beautiful plants. There are plenty of areas to stroll around, enjoy the scenery and the botanical gardens, or ride a bike and have fun at the lovely kids' area.
Williamstown Botanical Gardens are located next to the beach esplanade, so you're likely to enjoy a half-hour walk around if you're going to Williamstown Beach, Victoria. It's a family-friendly and accessible park. There're even toilets on site.
Botanical Gardens Williamstown Address:
Giffard St & Osborne Street, Williamstown VIC 3016. 📍Williamstown Botanical Garden details & directions
Williamstown Botanical Garden Opening Hours:
Williamstown Botanical Garden is open all day.
Williamstown Botanic Garden Entry Fee:
The botanical garden is free!
Williamstown Botanic Garden Map:
Williamstown Botanic Gardens Highlights:
This Edwardian-style garden is one of the first botanical gardens established in Victoria and is located near Williamstown Beach. It is quite small but houses many exotic plant species, including a palm tree avenue and an Ornamental lake. The lush grass areas are perfect for a picnic, and you can also enjoy ocean views.
Williamstown Botanical Gardens Facilities:
Public toilets in a park nearby
Public BBQ in local public areas
Williamstown Beach is nearby.
Williamstown Botanic Gardens Dogs:
Dogs are allowed on a leash.
Gravel paths at Williamstown Botanic Gardens provide good accessibility for wheelchairs and prams.
Maranoa Botanic Gardens is a must-see botanical garden in Melbourne. This amazing garden is bursting with life and colour, with winding paths leading you through a rainforest and various indigenous and native plants. Be sure to bring your camera - the photo opportunities here are endless!
Plus, with vast picnic areas, public toilets and a playground right next door, it's the perfect spot for a day out with the whole family.
Maranoa Gardens Address:
Parring Road, Balwyn 3103. 📍Maranoa Gardens details & directions
Maranoa Gardens Parking:
If you're looking for a place to park in the Maranoa Botanic Gardens, head to Beckett Park via Parring Road. With plenty of parking available, it's easy to get there and get started on your fun exploring one of the best flower gardens in Melbourne.
Maranoa Gardens Opening hours:
Monday to Friday: Open from 7.30am to 4pm
Saturday, Sunday and public holidays: Open from 10am to 5pm
Closed on Good Friday and Christmas Day
Maranoa Gardens Entry Fee:
The gardens are free!
Maranoa Gardens Map:
Maranoa Gardens Balwyn Highlights:
The lovely and peaceful Maranoa Gardens in Balwyn is home to 4000 species of Australian and New Zealand native plant species.
Follow the circuit path and explore the different zones of the gardens, including the Rainforest, Temperate Woodland, Indigenous Display and more.
Maranoa Garden Facilities:
Seating and tables
Maranoa Gardens Playground:
There is a playground in the nearby Beckett Park for kids to enjoy. You can also go up to a platform with views of the gardens and the neighbourhood.
Maranoa Gardens Dogs:
Dogs are not permitted within the fenced area of Maranoa Botanic Gardens.
Other Activities at Maranoa Gardens:
Cycling and rollerblading are not allowed.
Most paths at Maranoa Botanic Gardens are flat and even, making this park pram and wheelchair friendly.
Victoria State Rose Garden
If you're looking for a breathtaking rose garden to visit, look no further than Victoria State Rose Garden. This picturesque spot is home to beautiful roses of all colours, and the well-maintained garden is sure to take your breath away.
With plenty of space to walk around and enjoy the sights and smells of the roses, this is an incredible place to spend a day with the kids and family. And if you get hungry, picnic spots are available to enjoy a bite outdoors.
So whether you're from Melbourne or just visiting, be sure to add Werribee Botanical Gardens to your list of must-see destinations! Plus, it's one of the fun things to do in Werribee for free!
Werribee Rose Garden Address:
Gate 2, K Rd, Werribee South VIC 3030. 📍Victoria State Rose Garden details & directions
Werribee Rose Garden Opening Hours:
October 5th - April 4th:
Open from 9.30am to 6.00pm
April 5th - October 4th:
Open from 9.30am to 5.00pm
Victoria Rose Gardens Entry Fee:
Looking for a Victoria State Rose Garden ticket? No need! The Victorian Rose Garden is free for everyone.
Victoria State Rose Garden Map:
This Melbourne Rose Garden offers a stunning collection of roses on display. During your visit, you'll be able to explore the various areas of the rose garden. The Victoria State Rose Garden map is shown below.
Victorian State Rose Garden Highlights:
Enjoy the stunning collection of 5500 roses on display at Melbourne's best rose garden. Created in a shape of a rose, it's a beautiful place for a walk among the Rose bushes and is perfect for family picnics, wedding photography or nature lovers.
Rose lovers would be excited to see this extensive list of roses that are currently in this beautiful public rose garden.
Best time to visit Werribee Rose Garden:
If you're planning your visit to Werribee Rose Garden, the best time to visit:
In November (spring), the first blooms and the spring roses are at their peak.
Then March (autumn) is an excellent time to see masses of blooming flowers.
There are always some blooms in the Garden from early October until late July.
Kids At Rose Garden:
This Botanical Garden in Werribee is the perfect place for kids to let loose and have some fun. There are two hillocks to climb up and roll down, and the garden offers plenty of opportunities for exploration, imagination and kids' activities.
With public toilets nearby, this Rose Garden in Werribee VIC is a great place to spend an afternoon with the family.
Rose Garden Facilities:
Vic State Rose Garden Dogs:
Dogs or other pets are not allowed in the gardens.
Wide sand/gravel paths at Rose Garden are suitable for prams and wheelchairs.
Werribee Park Mansion
Werribee Park Mansion is located in Werribee Park, past the Victoria State Rose Garden. The mansion was built in 1877 in the Renaissance Revival style. The house has 60 rooms for you to explore. It is a mystery who the architect behind the mansion was.
The highlights of the mansion are the original antique furniture and many unique paintings adorning the walls. The house's structure is very impressive, as some of the original parts still stand today.
Werribee Mansion Address:
Werribee Park, past the Victoria State Rose Garden. 📍Get directions here.
Werribee Park Mansion Opening Hours:
Werribee Mansion's opening hours vary depending on the season:
High season: October 5 2020 - April 4 2021
Weekdays & Weekends and public holidays: 10 am - 5 pm daily (last entry 4.30 pm)
Low Season: April 4 2021 - October 2 2022
Weekdays: 10 am - 4 pm (last entry 3.30 pm)
Weekends and public holidays: 10 am - 5 pm (last entry 4.30 pm)
Werribee Mansion Cafe Opening Hours:
Friday to Sunday, 10 am - 4 pm
Werribee Park Mansion Entry Fees:
You can purchase tickets at the Werribee Park Mansion entrance:
Child (4-15 years): $7.90
Family (2 adults and 2 children): $34.30
Extra family child (4-15 years) $5.00
Werribee Mansion Facilities:
Dogs At Werribee Park Mansion:
Pets are not allowed in the Werribee Park Mansion.
The stairs in the mansion are not pram and wheelchair friendly.
Melton Botanic Garden
If you're looking for a tranquil and beautiful place to visit near Melbourne, look no further than the Melton Botanic Garden. This botanical garden is home to an amazing range of African and Australian plants, flowers and trees.
Plus, there's a large lake with plenty of birdlife and frogs. If you're looking for a peaceful place to walk, relax in nature or explore, this is the spot for the whole family!
Melton Botanic Gardens Address:
40 Lakewood Blvd, Melton VIC 3337. 📍Melton Botanic Garden details & directions
Melton Gardens Opening Hours:
Melton Botanical Gardens are open all day, every day.
Melton Gardens Entry Fee:
Entry is free!
Melton Botanic Gardens Map:
Download the Melton Botanic Gardens map before visiting.
Melton Botanic Gardens Highlights:
Visit this oasis of native Australian flora to explore eucalyptus variations, unique Indigenous species, the South African Garden, the lake and more.
The garden is still undergoing development, and you can keep coming back to see the changes and new additions. One of the future zones to be added is the Children's Garden.
Melton is quite dry compared to Melbourne, so a visit on a wet or cool day is a great idea.
Melton Botanical Garden Facilities:
Melton Botanical Garden Dogs:
Dogs are allowed strictly on a leash. You are required to carry a plastic bag with you to clean up after your dog.
Garden paths are mostly flat concrete or gravel and are suited for wheelchairs or prams.
Wilson Botanic Park
Wilson Botanic Park in Berwick is one of the most beautiful parks in Melbourne. With plenty of picnic areas, BBQs, a children's playground, and lakeside views, this park is perfect for a day out with friends or family.
The park's lush greenery and changing autumn leaves make it a scenic hotspot year-round. So bring your camera, the whole family and your furry friend and enjoy a wonderful day at Wilson Botanic Park Berwick!
Wilson Botanical Park Address:
668 Princes Hwy, Berwick VIC 3806. 📍Get directions here.
Wilson Botanical Gardens Opening Hours:
Non daylight savings:
7am - 6pm
7am - 9pm
Open Christmas Day
Wilson Park Berwick Entry Fee:
Wilson Botanical Garden is free!
Wilson Botanic Park Map:
Wilson Botanical Gardens Highlights:
This 39-hectare garden is a lovely hidden gem just off Princes Highway, with over 1000 plant species and various birds, lizards, snakes and turtles to explore.
There are many paths to follow around the garden: a leisurely stroll around the lake, a whole park circuit, a beautiful rose garden, and smaller trails such as the Camellia Walk.
Wilson Botanic Park Playground:
Wilson Botanic Park Playground is a great place to spend a sunny day. With two slides, steps, tunnels, and more, this playground has something for everyone.
The large wooden structure is perfect for climbing and sliding, while the smaller one is perfect for toddlers. There are also swings and a see-saw, so the whole family can have fun.
And when you need a break from all the excitement, you can enjoy a picnic lunch under the nearby BBQ.
Wilson Botanical Park Facilities:
Cafe at Wilson Botanical Park (open daily, 7 am - 3.30 pm)
Car park access is through the park gates
Wilson Botanical Park Dogs:
Dogs are allowed on lead at all times. You must clean up after your dog.
Other activities at Wilson Botanical Park:
Bikes, scooters, skateboards or rollerblades are not allowed in the garden.
There are accessible toilet facilities in two locations in the garden.
You may borrow a wheelchair from the Visitor’s Center.
Paths are wheelchair friendly, and there are ramps.
Please call 9705 5599 for further enquiries regarding accessibility.
George Pentland Botanic Gardens
George Pentland Botanic Gardens in Frankston is a wonderful place to relax and enjoy nature. With beautifully landscaped gardens and plenty of open space, it's the perfect place for a relaxing picnic or a fun-filled game of catch.
The pond is great for watching the ducks play, and the children's playground is sure to keep the little ones entertained for hours. So, if you're looking for a lovely day out surrounded by natural beauty, be sure to visit the George Pentland Botanic Gardens in Frankston!
George Pentland Gardens Address:
41N Williams St, Frankston VIC 3199. 📍George Pentland Gardensdetails & directions
George Pentland Gardens Opening Hours:
November to March:
7am - 9pm
April to October:
7am - 6pm
George Botanical Gardens Entry Fee:
The gardens are free!
George Botanical Gardens Map:
George Pentland Botanic Gardens Highlights:
These lovely gardens are great for the whole family. Take a walk around the garden trails to explore native flora and the ornamental lake, or settle down for a picnic near the playground at the park's eastern end.
George Pentland Botanic Gardens Facilities:
Paved & unpaved walking trails
Ornamental lake (you'll need to supervise children near open water at all times)
Accessible public toilets
Dogs At George Pentland Botanic Gardens:
Pets are not allowed in the gardens.
Marquees and pergolas are not allowed at the Gardens without prior permission.
The walking tracks are quite flat and can be accessed by prams.
Ashcombe Maze & Lavender Gardens
The beautiful Ashcombe Maze & Lavender Gardens in the Mornington Peninsula are great fun for the whole family. Ashcombe Maze is surely one of the best mazes in Melbourne!
Conquer the Hedge Maze Melbourne, wander through the Lavender Gardens Maze and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of the gardens.
The Great Gnome Hunt:
Set out with the whole family to find the magical gnomes and fairies hiding around the gardens. Get a prize after you find them all!
Lavender Garden Facilities:
Picnics and BBQ at the Lavender Garden:
Picnics and BBQs are not allowed in the Gardens.
Call 03 5989 8387 for more information.
Mornington Maze Opening Hours:
Open Wednesday to Sunday, 10 am - 5 pm
Closed Monday and Tuesday
Closed on Christmas Day
Ashcombe Maze Entry Fee:
Child (4-15 years): $10
Children (0-3 years): FREE
Ashcombe Maze & Lavender Gardens Address:
15 Red Hill-Shoreham Rd, Shoreham VIC 3916.
If you are looking for beautiful parks in Melbourne or botanical gardens near you, look no further than this comprehensive list of some of the best gardens in Melbourne and Victoria.
Share some snaps of your visit to these beautiful parks in Melbourne by tagging @schoolholidays.com.au on Instagram!