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Royal Botanic Garden picture in Sydney
Thomas Kurmeier / Getty Images

Key Info

Details

  • Parks and Gardens Type
  • 1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
4.5
Overall
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Scorecard

  • Value
    5.0
  • Facilities
    4.0
  • Atmosphere
    4.0

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Founded in 1816, the 74-acre Royal Botanic Garden abounds with bright and colorful flora and fauna. The park is broken into multiple areas, including Latitude 23 – an enclosed nursery with orchids, ferns and lilies – and an herb garden. Another popular area is the Palace Rose Garden, which houses nearly 1,800 roses and is a well-known Sydney wedding venue.

According to some previous travelers, a visit to the Royal Botanic Garden provides a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the city. Food from the property's two restaurants and two cafes also receives high praise, especially the Botanic Gardens Café's picnic boxes.

Located along Sydney Harbour within walking distance of the Hyde Park Barracks Museum and Mrs. Macquarie's Chair, the Royal Botanic Garden is free to visit, though special events will typically require an entrance fee. The gardens are open every day of the year but have varying hours depending on the month. Still, they're guaranteed to be open between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. (excluding Christmas Day and Good Friday). In addition to the gardens and eateries, the property also has a gift shop. To get to the Royal Botanic Garden, travelers can walk from the ferry terminal at Circular Quay, take the No. 200 or No. 441 buses or hop a train to the Martin Place station. If you'd rather avoid public transportation, driving to the gardens is another option. (Metered street parking is available on Mrs Macquaries Road and hourly garage parking is offered at Domain Car Park.)

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#2 Sydney Harbour Many visitors say that Sydney Harbour's 150 miles of shoreline and more than 30 square miles of water make it the most beautiful natural harbor in the world, and ... Read more » narvikk / Getty Images

#3 Sydney Opera House Designed by Danish architect Jørn Utzon, the sailboat-inspired structure – submitted during an international design contest held in 1956 – features more than one million tiles on its four roof shells and ... Read more » Robertpaulyoung / Flickr

#4 Darling Harbour Darling Harbour is a pedestrian district filled with a number of entertaining things to do. For instance, you'll find the largest film screen in the world at the LG ... Read more » Richard Beech Photography / Getty Images

#5 Coogee Beach Though it's a bit smaller than its better known northern counterpart Bondi, Coogee Beach is the quintessential spot for those looking to soak up some sun and swim in ... Read more » JavenLin / Getty Images

#6 The Rocks Earning its name from the sandstone rocks that line Sydney Harbour, this neighborhood is as quaint as it is cool. Its cobblestone streets and 19th-century buildings are oh-so charming, but ... Read more » kokkai / Getty Images

#7 Manly Beach At first glance, Manly Beach, which is located about 10 miles northeast of downtown Sydney, may be just as crowded and active as other area beaches like Bondi and Coogee ... Read more » Nigel Howe / Flickr

#8 Royal Botanic Garden Founded in 1816, the 74-acre Royal Botanic Garden abounds with bright and colorful flora and fauna. The park is broken into multiple areas, including Latitude 23 – an enclosed nursery ... Read more » Thomas Kurmeier / Getty Images

#9 Mrs. Macquarie's Chair In 1810, Governor Lachlan Macquarie commissioned a bench for his wife, and the city's convicts obliged him by carving Mrs. Macquarie's Chair out of a sandstone rock overlooking ... Read more » Darren Foreman / Flickr

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Boasting the world's largest film screen, an array of shops and restaurants, and museums like the Australian National Maritime Museum and the Powerhouse Museum, Darling Harbour offers travelers plenty to see and do. Richard Beech Photography / Getty Images

Although Bondi steals most of the spotlight, Coogee Beach's golden sands and calmer waters are worth checking out. JavenLin / Getty Images

From trendy bars and eateries to top-notch boutiques and art galleries, The Rocks neighborhood offers something for everyone. kokkai / Getty Images

Despite being a bit farther from downtown Sydney than other beaches like Bondi and Coogee, avid surfers praise Manly Beach for its prime surfing waves and fun atmosphere. Nigel Howe / Flickr

Escape the hustle and bustle of downtown Sydney in the city's Royal Botanic Garden. This lush sanctuary features 8,900 plant species, as well as 36 sculptures and all sorts of local wildlife. Thomas Kurmeier / Getty Images

Although this large sandstone bench is impressive, visitors flock to Mrs. Macquarie's Chair for its stunning views. Here, you'll capture jaw-dropping photos of the Sydney Opera House, the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the surrounding harbor. Darren Foreman / Flickr

Surfers and beach bums cannot miss a visit to this world-famous Australian beach. For those who'd rather skip the water and sand, try doing one of Bondi Beach's coastal walks, which will take you to Bronte or Coogee. Christine Wehrmeier / Getty Images

Although the Hyde Park Barracks Museum may not be as well known as another local UNESCO World Heritage site, the Sydney Opera House, this convict museum offers insight into Sydney's colonial history. NCHANT / Getty Images

Seven permanent collections and more than 30 annual rotating exhibits can be found at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, which sits near the Royal Botanic Gardens and Mrs. Macquarie's Chair. sourabhj / Getty Images

No harbor city would be complete without a museum dedicated to the sea. At the Australian National Maritime Museum, expect to see all sorts of exhibits, including several docked ships, which visitors can climb aboard. UCFFool / Flickr

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