Royal Botanical Gardens & Ian Potter Children’s Garden

Royal Botanical Gardens & Children’s Garden

Melbournes Royal Botanic Gardens have been a favourite destination of Melbournians for over a century, an easy walk from the central business district. Incorporating the beautiful Ian Potter Children’s Garden, they are a place to relax, picnic and enjoy an escape from the city.

Melbourne gardens are well known for being wonderful public spaces and the Botanical Gardens are amongst the best in Australia. Live theatre in the summer, fabulous autumn colours, crisp winter mornings and stunning spring flowers make the gardens a year-round place to visit.

Melbourne’s Botanic Gardens was established in 1846 by Lieutenant Governor Charles La Trobe. Over the next 60 years this swampy site was transformed into the world-famous landscape we know today. In 1958, Queen Elizabeth II bestowed the ‘Royal’ prefix on the Gardens.

Lake and Cafe

Down by the ornamental lake where swans gather, is a lovely cafe and gift shop. With a good selection of food and afternoon tea on offer, it makes a walk in the park perfect.

Ian Potter Children’s Garden

Ian Potter Children's Garden - Melbourne Botanical Gardens

The Ian Potter Children’s Garden is a special place to take kids, it is a place of discovery and learning as well as plenty of fun. Read more about opening times here.

Melbourne Observatory

Melbourne Observatory & Cafe Photo Credit WikiCommons

Constructed in 1861-1863, the Melbourne Observatory is managed by the Botanical Gardens. Much of the historic equipment used when the Observatory was fully operational is preserved and is still being used for observing the night sky. Guides from the Astronomical Society of Victoria host regular tours, find out more here.

The Tan

A Melbourne favourite for joggers and walks, the Tan Track is just under 4 km and surrounds the Botanical Gardens. Constructed in the early 1900’s as horse riding and carriage track, ‘The Tan’ is now one of the most popular walks in Melbourne. It is a great spot to let children ride bicycles quite safely.

Part of the track does involve using a footpath.

Getting There

From opposite the Melbourne Arts Centre on St Kilda Road, it is an easy walk through the Alexandra Gardens and Kings Domain.

Botanical Gardens Map