Walk beneath ancient hoop pines, navigate a maze, see the Australian cockatoos or have a picnic in the lush setting of these tropical gardens.
Situated within walking distance from Townsville’s city center and The Strand, Queens Gardens is a varied botanical garden that encompasses 10 acres (4 hectares). With many cool and tranquil areas to rest in, it is a refreshing and relaxing break from the city.
Originally established as a much larger garden in 1870, then called the Botanic Garden Reserve, the Queens Gardens initial purpose was to trial potential food and economic plants for the early settlers. Today it is there purely for recreational purposes; however, many of the trees do originate from those pioneering days. Take a walk among the massive hoop pines and black bean trees. The black bean, or Moreton Bay chestnut, is an evergreen flowering tree that can grow up to 130 feet (40 meters) tall.
Enter the heritage-listed gardens from the southeastern side and turn left into the rainforest area. It is a haven for birds and insects, so have your camera and insect repellant handy while enjoying a picnic on the shaded lawns.
Stroll farther along to the aviary to chat with the sulphur-crested cockatoos and marvel at the colorful plumage of the lorikeets and peacocks. Challenge yourself by heading into the maze in the center of the gardens. As you come out, take in the majestic view of Castle Hill in the distance.
Head to the northern side of the park for a stroll around the scented Herb Society's garden. Stop and smell the roses in the formal rose garden and look up at the vast canopy of the rain tree.
Let the kids roam the playground before heading to the events lawn for a chance to witness a wedding ceremony or attend a festival in this fairytale-like setting.
Head down into the last quadrant of the gardens to see the frangipani collection. Being the floral emblem of Queens Gardens, many native and cultivated frangipani varieties are represented. If blooming during your visit, make sure to savor the rich and tropical aroma of the glossy flowers.
The lush and peaceful setting of Queens Gardens is free to visit. Car parking is available along the neighboring roads.