Opened in the 1840s and stretching from Gardens Point on the Brisbane River to the grounds of Parliament House, Brisbane’s City Botanic Gardens is the oldest green space in the city. The gardens were originally planted in 1825 by convicts who needed to provide food for the penal colony, but three years later the colonial botanist Charles Fraser decided that this would be the perfect spot for conducting plant experiments to see which cash crops could grow well in Australia. Mango, ginger, tamarind and mahogany trees were all planted, and even sugar was produced in the gardens.
Formerly known as the Brisbane Botanic Gardens, the City Botanic Gardens front Alice Street and George Street. Full of rare and unusual flowers and plants including cycads, palms, figs, and bamboo, the gardens stretch for 20 acres and are popular with CBD workers and visitors looking to relax on the lawns and walk by the ornamental ponds. There are often boxing and pilates fitness class going on in the park, and in the historic curator’s house, The Gardens Club cafe is a popular spot for a bite to eat. Free guided walks of the gardens are also available.
The City Botanic Gardens is open 24 hours a day. The Gardens Club cafe is open from 8am to 4pm daily. At 11am and 1pm, Monday to Saturday (excluding public holidays), free, one-hour guided walks of the gardens take place, starting at the Rotunda near the park's main Alice Street entrance.