Brisbane City Botanic Gardens self-guided walk, QLD

Alice St, Brisbane

Brisbane City Botanic Gardens self-guided walk, QLD

Alice St, Brisbane

Staff Pick
29 m
1.99 km
Very Easy

A fabulous walk around Brisbane's premier public park and most mature gardens, with many rare and unusual botanic species.

Brisbane City Botanic Gardens self-guided walk, QLD

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A fabulous walk around Brisbane's premier public park and most mature gardens, with many rare and unusual botanic species.


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This brilliant walk around Brisbane's City Botanic Gardens is not to be missed.

The walk route and information is based on the Brisbane Council's City Botanic Gardens self-guided walk that enables you to explore the park at your own pace (click on the link for more information).

The Brisbane Botanic Gardens, occupying 20 hectares (49 acres), is bounded by George and Alice Streets and the Brisbane river. They comprise three major sections: the former Queen's Park along Alice Street, the Botanic Gardens proper (adjacent to the river), and the former Government Domain at the rear of the Queensland University of Technology (formerly part of the grounds to Old Government House). Set in undulating grounds, the gardens are bordered by mature shade trees which also create avenues and groves. A lake and formal lawns, gardens and structures provide a diversity of passive recreational activities. A series of interconnecting paths link a riverside concourse with other perimeter paths. The wiki page on the Gardens provides useful information.

Free volunteer guided walks are available to help you learn about the plants and features of the City Botanic Gardens. Walks are taken at a gentle pace for about one hour.

To see more images, go to City Botanic Gardens image slideshow .

All images have been taken from City Botanic Gardens self-guided walk Flickr album

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Points of Interest

1. Albert Street entrance gates and fence

The Albert Street entrance gates are the oldest formal gates to the gardens. The fence was made in 1916 from iron palisades from an earlier fence and convict-cut stone from the demolition of Brisbane

2. Cuban Royal Palms

There is a circle of Cuban Royal Palms (Roystonea regia) planted in the early 20th century. Where the palms are located was originally a cricket ground when it was part of the former Queen's Park.

3. Bunya Pine walk

Walter Hill planted the row of bunya pines between 1858 and 1867. The bunya pine (Araucaria bidwillii) was named and planted here in honour of botanist John Carne Bidwill (died 1853).

4. Weeping Fig Avenue

The Weeping Fig (Ficus benjamina) Avenue was planted in the late 1800s and is a significant gardens feature, connecting pedestrians from the riverside to the main entry path at Alice Street.

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5. Queensland's sugar industry inception

After many failed attempts, in 1862, Walter Hill and John Buhôta (a Barbados planter), successfully granulated the juice from sugar cane. The crop trials were at the City Botanic Gardens.

6. Flood mark

This was erected in 1999 to commemorate floods that devastated parts of the gardens. Between 1870 and 1974, eight major floods swept though the gardens.

7. Bamboo Grove

The Bamboo Grove is a collection of 23 bamboo species.

8. Walter Hill Fountain

The stone drinking fountain was made in 1867 and named in honor of the first Garden's curator. It commemorates the completion of the Enoggera Dam.

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9. Tamarind tree (Tamarindus indica)

In 1858, Walter Hill planted the tree as a potential food crop for the early colony. It still produces fruit.

10. Jemmy Morrill and the brolgas sculpture

Queenslander Lindsay Daen created the bronze sculpture of 22 year old seaman, James Morrill who was the sole survivor of an outer edge Great Barrier Reef shipwreck in 1846.

11. City Botanic Gardens lagoon and fern island (original site)

The lagoon was built for irrigation and drainage when the government garden was established. During the 1860s, Walter Hill developed the highly acclaimed Fern Island within the old lagoon.

12. Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni)

Planted by Walter Hill in 1858. Wood from the mahogany tree was an economic crop, important to early settlers in the new colony. The tree is native to southern USA, Caribbean and the West Indies.

13. Macadamia nut or Queensland nut tree

This tree planted by Walter Hill in 1858 is believed to be the world's first non-Indigenous cultivation of the macadamia (Macadamia integrifolia).

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14. Rainforest Garden with gneiss and coral rockeries

During the 1860s, Australia shipped wheat to South America from Kangaroo Point wharves (across the river) and used rocks or gneiss (pronounced 'nice'), as ballast.

15. Curator's residence

The curator's residence was built in 1909. In 1987, the house was converted into a restaurant during a major gardens' redevelopment.

16. Floods and leaning palms

You can see the effects of the 1890s floods in several palms with trunks leaning at angles. Failed attempts to upright them involved using horses, ropes and winches.

17. Fig trees

The small-leaved fig (Ficus microcarpa) is a Queensland native. The banyan tree (Ficus benghalensis) originates from India.

18. Anzac pine and other conifers

Here are Anzac pines (Pinus brutia). In 1979, these pines were planted from seeds collected at Gallipoli where ANZACs fought during World War I. Other pines include bunya pine (Araucaria bidwillii).

19. Ornamental ponds

The ponds were created between 1958 and 1960. The lower ornamental pond was part of the gardens' original natural creek system.


Public Transport Public Transport
Picnic spot Picnic spot
Drinking water available Drinking water available
Seating available Seating available
Public toilets Public toilets
Pram friendly Pram friendly
Historical interest Historical interest
Art and culture Art and culture
Nature trail Nature trail
Lake, creek, river Lake, creek, river
Park / Garden Park / Garden