Royal Botanic Gardens

The Royal Botanic Gardens are situated in one of Sydney's most beautiful locations

Flowers at the Royal Botanic Gardens frame the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge
Flowers at the Royal Botanic Gardens frame the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge cc licensed photo by Rê mineira

The 75 acre Royal Botanic Gardens are located on ground overlooking Farm Cove just south and east of the Sydney Opera House. These beautiful gardens are the culmination of nearly two centuries of hard work dedicated to the science of botany in Australia. The gardens are indeed the main centre for botanical sciences in Australia. Come and discover the amazing collection of plants, both native to Australia and from around the world in this magnificent setting.

The Gardens occupy the site of Australia's first farm which was started in 1788. Interestingly, due to poor soil and growing conditions, the farm was not a success, however the land continued to be cultivated. In 1816 Governor Macquarie founded the gardens as part of the Governor's domain, which later became the location of Government House. He appointed a botanist from the Colony to oversee research and develop the gardens.

The great majority of development that you see today took place under the direction of Charles Moore, a botanist from Scotland, between the years 1848 and 1896. During World War 1 and through the Great Depression, cut backs caused the gardens to regress some, however in 1959 after the gardens where designated as "Royal" they began once again to receive the attention and enhancements they deserved.

While you are welcome to explore the gardens on your own, there is a free guided walking tour every day at 10:30am and also on Monday to Friday from March through November at 1pm. These start from the information booth located just outside the garden shop at the Palm Grove Centre. You can also expect to see lots of colourful birds and wildlife in the gardens. The gardens are also a superb spot to just come and relax; a beautiful oasis from the surrounding city.

Nearby attractions: Government House, Sydney Opera House, Art Gallery of NSW, Customs House, Justice and Police Museum, and Museum of Sydney.

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: No

Royal Botanic Gardens Hours:
Opening hours may differ on holidays

  • Monday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Thursday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Friday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Saturday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Sunday: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Address: Mrs Macquaries Rd, Sydney NSW 2000, Australia

Phone: (02) 9231 8111

Official Website: Royal Botanic Gardens

Royal Botanic Gardens Reviews

Rated 4.7 out of 5 Star Rating

5 Star Rating It is one of the most beautiful gardens I have ever seen. It is a garden that is a candidate to become a forest if it were a little larger and densely wooded. You can see different and incredibly beautiful trees. People reading books, chatting, having picnics away from the crowds and noise of the city... You can take beautiful photos as you can see the opera house from a beautiful angle.
mustafa - a week ago

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5 Star Rating Sydney's Royal Botanic Garden is a haven of tranquility in the heart of the bustling city. Offering free admission, this lush garden is a paradise for nature enthusiasts, with its wide array of palm trees, ferns, succulents, flowers, and other flora. It's the perfect place to escape the urban noise and immerse yourself in nature's beauty. Strolling through the garden, you'll be treated to stunning views of the iconic Sydney Opera House, creating a picturesque backdrop for your visit. The garden is vast, with various pathways winding through the diverse plant collections and leading to serene spots ideal for picnics or quiet contemplation. One of the highlights is the sheer diversity of the botanical displays, providing a sensory feast with their vibrant colors and fragrances. Whether you're exploring the outer edges with their beautiful water views or delving into the inner gardens, there's always something new to discover. For a more structured experience, you can download an app that offers a map and guided tours, helping you navigate the different areas of the garden and learn about the plants and their significance. The Royal Botanic Garden is a must-visit for anyone looking to enjoy a peaceful retreat amidst nature's splendor, right in the city's heart. It's a testament to Sydney's dedication to preserving natural beauty and providing a space for relaxation and exploration.
Kelsey Bby - a month ago

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5 Star Rating Love these gardens. Full of life and greenery, huge open space with plenty of places to sit and picnic, or hang out with friends with a coffee in hand. Some wildlife around, and it all feels so removed from the big city right next door. Highly recommend a visit if you’re around, it’s well worth the stroll.
Gabriel - 4 weeks ago

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5 Star Rating The Royal Botanic Garden of Sydney is a tranquil oasis nestled in the heart of the bustling city. With its lush greenery, vibrant floral displays, and diverse plant collections, it offers a refreshing escape for nature lovers. The best part? Admission is free, making it accessible to all. A leisurely stroll through the garden, culminating in a picturesque view of the iconic Sydney Opera House, is an experience not to be missed. It's the perfect blend of beauty, serenity, and iconic sights, making it a must-visit destination for locals and tourists alike.
Zongle - 2 months ago

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5 Star Rating Absolutely amazing! Thousands of palm trees, ferns, succulents, flowers and other fauna&flora. If you like nature, you could safely skip the opera house and spend the entire day in this splendid, beautiful and free garden.
A Czopak - a month ago

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Line Nearest Station Walking Time
L2, T2, T3 or FerryCircular Quay7 minutes
T4Martin Place3 minutes

How to get to Royal Botanic Gardens by

By Train or Ferry: exit at Circular Quay Station and proceed west on Alfred Street then left on Albert Street and right on Macquarie Street. Enter the Gardens by the horse and rider statue at Bridge Street.

By Train: exit at Martin Place and walk east through the plaza to Macquarie Street; cross over and enter the narrow walkway just to the right of the Sydney Hospital Entrance. Continue east on the walkway the the pathway into the Garden.

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