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The Ultimate Guide to Adelaide’s Best Gardens

The Ultimate Guide to Adelaide’s Best Gardens

The vibrant colours of flowers and the calm tone of green leaves have always made us feel refreshed and relaxed, so we make sure to bring some home or go out of our way to visit gardens. Luckily for us, Adelaide is abundant with beautiful gardens. 

After years of going around and discovering new gardens, we’ve finally chosen our favourite gardens in Adelaide. We compiled them here to help you decide where to go next!

Adelaide Botanic Garden

Adelaide Botanic Garden

Location: North Terrace, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia.

Opening Hours: Monday to Wednesday: 7:15 AM – 7:00 PM (December to March)

Thursday to Sunday: 7:15 AM – 9:00 PM (December to March)

Monday to Friday: 7:15 AM – 5:30 PM (April to September)

Saturday to Sunday: 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM ( April to September)

Monday to Wednesday: 7:15 AM – 6:30 PM (October to November)

Thursday to Friday: 7:15 AM – 7:00 PM (October to November)

Saturday to Sunday: 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM (October to November)

Adelaide Botanic Garden is one of the three famous Botanic Gardens of South Australia and was first opened to the public on October 4, 1857, in order to connect Adelaideans to plants, culture, and other people.

It’s a 16-hectare garden located in the heart of Adelaide City. It features a diverse collection of plants from Australia and other parts of the world.

What makes the garden stand out from the rest, aside from its beautiful plants, is its collection of world-class architectural buildings that adds up to the whole experience.

Pro tip: Because of the size of the garden, it may take some time before you get to see everything, and you might get unsure of where to start. Hence, we highly suggest using the MyParx app to learn more about the park and find trails you can follow.

Must-See Gardens in the Adelaide Botanic Garden

The Adelaide Botanic Garden houses a wide range of plants, trees, and flowers that you’ll find all over the world. The diversity inside may overwhelm you, so we’ve taken it upon ourselves to help you know all the mini-gardens that will blow your mind.

Cactus and Succulent Garden

Cactus and Succulent Garden

Visit the Cactus and Succulent Garden and see plants originally from Africa and South America. In this garden, you’ll be able to learn about how these plants survived the harsh and dry conditions of the places where they come from.

International Rose Garden

International Rose Garden
Photo by: Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium

Roses are one of the most popular flowers in the world, so it’s expected that the International Rose Garden is also one of the most visited in the Botanic Garden.

The garden houses over 2,700 roses, so you can expect that your eyes will not only be the ones delighted but also your nose.

The flowers are the prettiest in October to November and April. Hence, we highly suggest visiting during these months if you want to experience the garden’s full potential.

Dahlia Garden

Dahlia Garden
Photo by: Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium

The Dahlia Garden of the Adelaide Botanic Garden showcases some of the most beautiful Dahlia flowers you’ll see in Australia, so it’ll be a huge pity if you won’t drop by the garden on your visit.  

We highly suggest visiting the garden around late summer to see the flowers at their peak.

Bicentennial Conservatory

Bicentennial Conservatory
Photo by: Architecture and Design

Established in 1988, the Bicentennial Conservatory is the Southern Hemisphere’s largest single-span conservatory.

Upon entry, you’ll be greeted by a huge collection of at-risk and endangered rainforest plants. It’s also surrounded by palm trees and canopies, imitating a real rainforest to make the overall experience as ]authentic as possible.

Palm House

Palm House
Photo by: Philip Gibson

The Palm House is a restored Victorian glasshouse imported from Bremen, which serves as home to a wide range of plants from Madagascar that requires a warm and dry environment to grow.

The colors of the glass shift depending on lighting conditions, making the glasshouse stand out among the other buildings in the garden.

Adelaide Botanic Gardens Entry Fee
Entry to Adelaide Botanic Garden is free, so you don’t have to worry about paying a hefty price just to enjoy one of South Australia’s best tourist attractions. 
In addition, free tours are also hosted by the Friends of Botanic Garden daily. You can join them if you’re unsure how to make the most of your visit.

Adelaide Botanic Gardens Parking
Parking is available for private cars at Plane Tree Drive and in front of the Goodman Building and State Herbarium, although it’s not free. 
Make sure to bring your card if you’ll be parking there, as all ticketed parking in the garden is operating cashless.

Adelaide Himeji Garden

Adelaide Himeji Garden
Photo by: Adelaide Economic Development Agency

Location: Cnr South Terrace &, Glen Osmond Rd, Adelaide, SA 5000

Operating hours: 

Non-daylight Saving Time:

Monday to Sunday: 8:00 AM – 5:30 PM

Daylight Saving Time:

Monday to Sunday: 8:00 AM – 7:30 PM (October 31)

Monday to Sunday: 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM (November)

Monday to Sunday: 8:00 AM – 8:30 PM (December & January)

Monday to Sunday: 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM (February)

Monday to Sunday: 8:00 AM – 7:30 PM (March to end of DLS)

Located in the beautiful city of Adelaide, Adelaide Himeji Garden is designed to showcase the beauty of traditional Japanese gardens and celebrate the relationship between Adelaide and Himeji.

However, since Adelaide and Japan have different climates, you’ll find that some modifications were made to accommodate Adelaide’s climate and plants.

The large lake and beautiful water lilies inside the garden make it stand out from the rest of the gardens in Adelaide. It also has an Okunoin Lantern personally gifted by the City of Himeji, which adds charm to the place.

When we came to visit, we noticed that the garden has a certain air of tranquillity and peace that you won’t find anywhere else in Adelaide. It’s the perfect site for those wanting to contemplate and relax.

Himeji Garden Entry Fee
There’s no entry fee in Adelaide Himeji Garden. 
Any visitor can come any time the garden is open and have a relaxing and peaceful time in the middle of the city, completely free of charge.

Himeji Garden Parking
There are ample free parking spaces by the street and around Himeji Garden, so visitors can bring their cars when they come to visit.

Veale Gardens

Veale Gardens
Photo by: Adelaide Economic Development Agency

Location: South Tce, Adelaide, SA 5000

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

A popular wedding venue for several Adelaideans, the Veale Gardens features over 50 varieties of roses and has two beautiful rose beds.

The Adelaide Pavilion is also located in the garden, so there will be a lot of activities and places to eat when you come to visit.  

What we found the most endearing about this garden when we visited was the lush green grass and the river flowing through the garden. Hearing the water flow while seeing the beautiful field was relaxing and peaceful, making us feel at ease.

You should also try feeding the birds and ducks on your visit, as it will help you feel closer to nature. It would also be a great experience for the kids.

Veale Gardens Entry Fee
You can visit Veale Gardens free of charge at any time of the day. 
It’s open 24/7, and you won’t need to spend anything if you want to visit and see the beautiful flowers that decorate it.

Veale Gardens Parking
There’s plenty of parking available on the street along Veale Gardens. Just note that there is a 2-hour limit every weekday.
In addition to this, there’s also parking available in the Adelaide Pavilion if you want to eat there.

Carrick Hill

Carrick Hill
Photo by: Glam Adelaide

Location: 46 Carrick Hill Dr, Springfield, SA 5062

Operating Hours: Wednesday to Sunday: 10:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Just 8 kilometres away from Adelaide CBD, Carrick Hill is one of Australia’s most prized historic properties. Standing beautifully in a 100-acre estate, the Carrick Hills mansion is a must-see when visiting Adelaide.

Although the main attraction at the site is the English manor-style mansion, the estate’s beautiful green field and rose garden are equally beautiful attractions you have to visit.

The former owner, Ursula, is an avid fan of roses and has planted both old-fashioned and new award-winning roses in her garden. Until this day, the administration preserves the rose garden and shares its beauty with guests.

Carrick Hill is a perfect spot to lazily lay on the grass, pull out a book and enjoy the company of beautiful flowers surrounding you.

Carrick Hill Entry Fee
Carrick Hill offers free admission into the grounds and garden.
However, if you want to enter the house, there’s a ticket fee of $17 for adults and $12 for concessions.

Carrick Hills Parking
Carrick Hill offers plenty of free parking for visitors, so you don’t have to worry about bringing your car and not having a place to park.

Pinky Flat

Pinky Flat
Photo by: Natasha Stewart

Location: War Memorial Dr, North Adelaide, SA 5006

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

Situated by the River Torrens, Pinky Flat is one of the many beautiful parklands in Adelaide.

The park is a lot more secluded and less visited than the Elder Park on the opposite side of the river, but it can still get pretty crowded when special events like festivals are held there.

It’s surrounded by trees, so it’s pretty shaded and isn’t that hot. It’s a perfect place to lay a blanket and enjoy a peaceful picnic.

With several bushes of flowers decorating the trail, Pinky Flat offers visitors a relaxing opportunity to walk by the river and enjoy the company of other visitors.

Pinky Flat Entry Fee
Pinky Flat is open and free for the public 24/7, just like the other parks near the area. 

Pinky Flat Parking
Limited metered parking is available near Pinky Flat, so you should be able to find a spot if you come early. 
However, it would be much better to just use public transport, as the parking space can get full quite fast.

Soldiers’ Memorial Garden

Soldiers' Memorial Garden
Photo by: The City of Unley

Location: Cnr Unley Road & Thomas Street, Unley, SA 5061

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

Created to remember the lives of the Australian soldiers who fought during the first World War, the Soldiers’ Memorial Garden is a great place to visit if you want a fun family afternoon.

The garden has a lot of open space for kids to run and play, so they won’t be bored by just sitting in one spot.

It’s also near Unley Shopping Centre, so it’s easy for you to get food and set up a picnic blanket on the grass field.

Soldiers’ Memorial Garden offers you and your family a chance to learn about the sacrifices of our soldiers while having a relaxing family day, so it’s definitely worth a visit.

Soldiers’ Memorial Garden Entry Fee
Just like the other parks and gardens in Adelaide, entry to the Soldiers’ Memorial Garden is free of charge, making it accessible to more people.

Soldiers’ Memorial Garden Parking
The Soldiers’ Memorial Garden is near Unley Shopping Centre, so visitors can use plenty of parking spots in the centre when they decide to have a fun family day at the park.

The Waite Arboretum

The Waite Arboretum
Photo by: The University of Adelaide

Location: The University of Adelaide – Waite Campus, Walter Young Ave, Urrbrae, SA 5064

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday: 8:00 AM – 7:00 PM

About six kilometres away from Adelaide CBD, The Waite Arboretum is a beautiful garden filled with many different species waiting to be enjoyed by visitors.

It’s a 27-hectare garden and has over 2,500 plant specimens, so there will be a lot to look at. Despite the annual rainfall, the plants prosper and bloom beautifully.

On our visit, we enjoyed walking around and learning about all sorts of trees. They have palms, dragon trees, oaks, eucalyptus, and so much more, and each of them is mapped and labelled, allowing us to fully understand each of them.

If you plan on visiting, you should consider going every Sunday of the month, except January, to join the free guided walks they host to get the best experience.

The Waite Arboretum Entry Fee
The Waite Arboretum is another garden you can visit without spending a dollar, as entry to the garden is free of charge.

The Waite Arboretum Parking
There’s on-site parking available at the end of Walter Young Avenue near the Urrbae House. You can also park at the edge of Walter Young Avenue or near the Woolhouse Library.

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