Australia seems to be prospering, economically, and there are lots of jobs available. We’ve noticed that public money is definitely put into maintaining (and even expanding) the gardens, sidewalks, amenities, public toilets, staffing of information centres, etc. Every Aussie city of any size has a botanic garden, dating to Victorian times. Now, 100+ years later, they provide a perfect place to relax, especially if you are interested in plants and birds.
Here in Brisbane, we have enjoyed three major gardens. The subtropical climate helps make these interesting.
Roma Street Parkland
In spite of all the good design and care given to the garden walkways, inevitably one will find oneself in a situation where the public path doesn’t go quite where one wanted it to. (Oddly, this seems to be more of a problem when I walk with my husband than with
normal other people. No, these were not taken by a security camera. And please note that my socks match my shirt.
Brisbane City Botanic Garden
We’ve put lots of mileage on our feet in this park. (But I haven’t yet figured out how to use the pedometer on my iPhone.) The Brisbane River loops through the city and the garden occupies the bottom part of one of those loops. There are pedestrian bridges or sidewalks at several points, so we can walk to and fro across the river and around the city.
Husband had to take photos of the first 50 or so iguanas we saw. He finally got over the novelty.
In about 1970, the city got tired of having to rebuild the gardens every few years after they got flooded out. So the park and garden remains, but it is not as complex and horticulturally adventurous as the new one built a few km outside the city.
Brisbane Botanic Garden – Mt. Coot-tha
The new garden is just 40 years old but very lush and impressive. The sub-tropical weather allows them to grow plants from anywhere in the world except the Arctic, and grow them FAST. We spent the afternoon walking through jungle, desert, bonsai, eucalyptus, roses, masses of jasmine. Then did a minor hike through natural veggie and saw some snakes including a 1-m one in the water.