Visit to the National Botanical Gardens and Lake Burley Griffin

Today I visited some of my favourite places in Canberra: The National Botanical Gardens and Lake Burley Griffin. I headed to the gardens first and was pleased to find a car park pretty quickly. I did have to pay for parking though, but that done, I headed up to the entrance to the gardens. First of all I walked inside the Visitor Information Centre and saw there was an art exhibition on. I strolled around and looked at artworks of numerous native plants and flowers adorning the walls-they were so pretty!

Then I collected a map of the gardens as I hadn’t been in a while and headed on the main path track. The path was very smooth and easy to walk on. I passed my favourite walk which is Rainforest Gully. This walk winds through rainforests from Tasmania to Northern Queensland-it is devine! I headed to the Sydney garden area and looked at lots of plants I would recognise from the odd weekend down the coast: banksia trees and so on.

I saw a sign about a Waratah which is such a gorgeous red flower. I’d seen them at markets down the coast before and they are amazing! I walked past the Red Centre Garden which has soil and plants like you might see in a desert-like area of Australia like Uluru. I found the Bee Hotel which was a little wooden house with holes in it for bees to nestle in comfortably.

I gazed at the tranquil waterfall of the Rock Garden and saw a lizard sunning itself on a rock nearby, which someone pointed out to me. Then I walked past gorgeous cornflowers rustling in the wind and headed down through the Rainforest Gully on the lower walk. I heard water trickling over nearby rocks and felt the coolness of the rainforest encasing me in its supreme tranquility. The forest was a sea of green with giant tree ferns waving their branches at me as I walked on by.

 

Lastly I headed through the Tasmanian Woodland section with bridges over pools of water and interesting-looking trees. I saw a Rosella in a tree fern as I crossed a high bridge and skipped across some stepping stones in a pond underneath a waterfall. Then it was on to Lake Burley Griffin!

I jumped in my car and headed for Canberra’s most well-known lake. It’s a great vantage point to spot the numerous landmarks and tourist attractions of Canberra like Telstra Tower, Parliament House, the High Court, National Library, National Museum and Questacon to name a few! Having arrrived, I did need to park a bit further away as many people had the same idea as me to visit the lake today.

However I was glad of this because it meant I could stroll by the lakeside and take in the scenery. I saw the trees at the other side of the lake were turning bright reds and yellows. I spotted a seagull, ducks and black waterbirds with white beaks splashing around in the water or padding along on the grass. Tall poplar trees lined the way and stood majestically above me. Soon I approached Aspen Island with the National Carillion-a great musical instrument with brass bells chiming in the breeze from a tall tower. There is a bridge leading across to the island and a Lake Burley Griffin cruise boat was circling it.

Having brought along my newspaper, I stopped to buy a coffee and a pie and sat down at a table under some poplar trees with a great vantage point of the lake. It was great for people watching as I watched walkers, dogs and cyclists pass on by. Having finished my coffee and pie, I headed across the bridge and around Aspen Island. I spotted a couple of black swans which were eagerly looking for food. They are very friendly animals. I saw the cruise boat travel into the distance and headed back under the branches of some willow trees.

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