Melbourne’s Walk in the Park Tour: Treasury Gardens

Melbourne’s Walk – Danger Avoided

This post disappeared from Always Write in the chaos of moving the site to this domain. It is part of an Australian travel series written in 2016-17 but the pictures and memories are beautiful. I hope you enjoy them.

Jo’s Monday Walks, Cee’s Which Way Challenge Australia Series#2 Treasury Gardens

Our trip did not start out as Melbourne’s walk in the park. Quite the opposite.

The Eternal Traveller and I flew into Melbourne under a dark cloud. Minutes after arriving at our Airbnb across from the State Library, it poured. I slid on the tiled sidewalks like a neophyte on ice and had to change from slippery sandals into my “stabilization shoes.” (ie trainers, walking shoes, tennis shoes – I’m acquiring a new vocabulary in Australia.)  

Suburbs flooded. I would not put money, no matter how much was in the treasury, on having a walk in any park near Melbourne, Victoria the day we arrived.

Melbourne's walk
Tram window view of the Treasury Building in Melbourne, Victoria

Perfect Weather for a Melbourne Walk

We discovered if you liked the weather, too bad, it would change. If you did not like the weather, “good on ya,” it would change.

“There is no such uncertainty as a sure thing.”

Robert Burns, Collected Poems of Robert Burns

We started our journey with a free tram around the city center. The tram had its purposes, but photography could not be counted as a benefit. Through the dirty window, I snapped a picture of the Treasury Building, now a museum.

Sure enough, the weather changed the next day. We started our journey with a free tram around the city center. The tram had its purposes, but photography could not be counted as a benefit. Through the dirty window, I snapped a picture of the Treasury Building, now a museum.

The First Garden Stop: Treasury Gardens

Melbourne, a metropolis of over 5,000,000 surprised me with so many parks in the Central Business District (CBD). Melbourne’s walk in the park relaxed visitors and residents alike. The large city park center features ornamental ponds, elegant plant, birds, and statue.Melbourne's walk

Melbourne residents, stressed out from the normal wear and tear of life, should indulge in one of Melbourne’s walk in the parks.  Mrs. ET and I wandered into the Treasury Gardens and stepped back into another world. Residents and visitors alike watched their troubles slip over the waterfall and lost them in the ornamental ponds. We had no worries. We were on holiday, and nothing could have been better for us than Melbourne’s walk in the park.

Melbourne's walk
So close to the city.

Off at Federation Square

Stop six on the official “Walk in the Park Guide,” which you can get as an app or pick up the Visitor’s Center in Federation Square, took us to the Danger Zone.

Melbourne's walk

Danger Keep Out

Signs do not deter determined teachers on vacation. Mrs. Eternal Traveller led the way and we marched across the grass around the signs prepared to keep people away from fireworks later in the week. We watched workers as they prepared for the next event in the park.

Melbourne's walk
Melbourne worker prepares for fireworks.

As we rounded the bend, I caught my breath at my first sight of the Victorian gardens.

Melbourne's walk

European settlers came to Melbourne in abundance during the 1850s as the Gold Rush in Ballarat, Victoria. They changed the landscape of the state of Victoria Australia in much the same way the 1849 Gold Rush altered California. According to Wikipedia, “During the Victorian gold rush of the 1850s, it (Melbourne) was transformed into one of the world’s largest and wealthiest cities.[17” One result was the flourishing of Melbourne’s public gardens replete with statues, fountains, trees, birds, and birds of paradise and other flowers.

Ornamental Pond with Fountains

Melbourne's walk

Treasury Gardens Ornamental pond

The ponds housed several breeds of birds who checked to see if we came ready to feed them.

Melbourne's walk

Magpie

Like good environmentalists, we did not come armed with bread which Audubon Societies recommend against and laws in many states prohibit.

Melbourne's walk

Mrs. ET and I, cameras in hand, headed two different directions as soon as the ponds appeared. Ornamental ponds formed the backdrop for the vibrant flowers.

Melbourne's walk

Mrs. ET loved these succulents which I overlooked at first glance around the array of beautiful flowers.

Flowers In Paradise

Melbourne's walk

Guarding the plaque of President Kennedy, these delicate orange bells peeked from their chalky coating. They thrilled Mrs. ET. I snapped several shots of her burying her camera into these slender beauties lining one of the large fountains. While she had her nose in these, I snuck up on a bird of paradise.

Melbourne's walk

Bird of Paradise

“Don’t move,” I warned him. And he stayed right where I wanted him.

Melbourne's walk

Plaques and Statues

All around me, I noticed that Australians practice honoring their past with statues, flowers, and commemorative walls, buildings. My hosts demonstrated great pride in their past.  Mrs. ET pointed out the significance of contributions of every statue featured in the Gardens.

Throughout our travels, we found statues in gardens and buildings in every city honored citizens, storybook characters, or historical persons from Australia and other countries. Robert Burns, the poet, lounged in the Gardens, but he avoided my camera somehow, as did William Clarke.

The face of President Kennedy kept a keen eye on the Treasury Building while we looked on. On a hot day, he might be tempted to hop into the waterfall behind him.

Melbourne's walk
Plaque of John F. Kennedy

You, Too May Need a Loo

Many have recognized the beauty of these Treasury Garden restrooms with wrought iron doors. These were constructed for a Spring Carnival and floral festival in 1939. The art deco structure exhibited craftsmanship from an era gone by that would be very expensive to bring back.

Melbourne's walk

The Loo

After a leisurely stroll through the beautiful gardens, we had no desire to head back to the bustle of the city.

Melbourne's walk

Treasury Gardens Loo

After a leisurely stroll through the beautiful gardens, we had no desire to head back to the bustle of the city.

Fortunately, for us, Fitzroy Gardens was across the street. We headed over there for the next part of our walk in Melbourne.

Location

2-18 Spring Street

East Melbourne VIC 3002

If you have a post about Melbourne to link to this post, feel free to do so in the comments or by email.

Click Like if you’ve ever been to Treasury Park.

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“The Inaugural Meeting of Fairvale Ladies Book Club” – A Book Review and just a tad of jealousy

You’re going to love this book and the reviewer, too.

by Irene Waters

Every so often, go through your list of followers and those who have liked your blog and you will find some gems of people. Irene is one of them.

Irene has more energy than a puppy and has bounced from one successful venture to another. She has been a clinical nurse educator in intensive care, a resort, general store, and restaurant owner (at different times), construction contractor, and now writer. This is a woman you want to rub off on you. If she were a pill I’d take 10,000 mg of Irene Waters a day.

Her book review moved me to instantly purchase the book and start reading.

She gave me permission to reblog her review on Always Write.

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A long time friend gave me The Inaugural Meeting of the Fairvale Ladies Book Club  by Sophie Green for my birthday with a little trepidation. She knows I read a lot and was worried it may not have been a book to my liking. How wrong she was – I found this book not only enjoyable but it made me jealous of this writer’s ability to put you in place, to describe perfectly emotions that I struggled to describe in my own book. But let me tell you about the story first.

It was set in the Australia’s Northern Territory on a vast, remote cattle property in 1978. It was hot and arid for most of the year, becoming humid in the wet which saw the property cut off from everything as the red bull dust turned to sludge. A family ran the property and the son had just returned from Britain with his bride. In an effort to make her life easier  Sybil Baxter started the Fairvale Ladies Book club which consisted of Sybil, the mother, her daughter-in-law, an American jillaroo from the next property (a couple of hours drive away), a mother that lived in the closest town (also a couple of hours away) and the flying doctor nurse who flew in from Alice Springs. Read more…

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How to Enjoy the Ballarat Botanical Gardens

If you go to Victoria, you HAVE to take the hour and a half train from Melbourne and visit the City of Ballarat Botanical Gardens across the street from Lake Wendouree.

Rated 2 Out of 73 Places to Visit in Ballarat

Australia trip #17 Jo’s Monday Walks, Cee’s Which Way Challenge

If you go to Victoria, you HAVE to take the hour and a half train from Melbourne and visit Ballarat.  Ballarat Botanical Gardens

The hurried bustle of Melbourne changed in minutes once we left the station.

Ballarat Botanical GardensSoon the brown landscape reminded me of the Central Valley of California, where I live. Not much changed during the hour trip, and it sped by so quickly you would not have enjoyed the picture.

Ballarat or Bust

Yes, the 1850 Australian Gold Rush happened in Ballarat. We approached the golden gates at lunch time so our hostesses, Carol’s sister-in-law and niece, took us to lunch at Pipers by the Lake.

Ballarat Botanical GardensManny, my traveling bear, always says, “I’m never hungry, but I can always eat.”

Notice he liked pasta. I chose pumpkin soup. Australian pumpkin anything is fabulous, and Pipers did not disappoint. In retrospect, I probably should not have opted for the hot soup. The afternoon temperatures soared into the late nineties.

After lunch, I was ready for a nap, but these energetic, climate-time-adjusted women got Manny and me up and on our feet. Weather of almost any kind melts me, but the beauty surrounding the restaurant spurred me on.

Ballarat Botanical GardensAfter some quick photo ops on the Lily Bridge decorating Lake Wendouree, donned in my Stabilisation Shoes (spelled the Australia way, pronounced stable-I-ZA-shun), I was primed for a long walk.

I longed for air conditioning. Instead, we walked down the block a bit and along Lake Wendouree. There really are black swans, so, in spite of the heat, I began to catch their enthusiasm.

Ballarat Botanical GardensSoon we crossed the western side of the street to the City of Ballarat Botanical Gardens. Rated #2 of 73 things to do by Trip Advisor, my guides Mandy, Katie, and Carol could not have made a better choice of introduction to Ballarat for me.

It’s only a few minutes’ drive from the Central Business District of Ballarat, abbreviated as CBD, to find Pipers and the Gardens. BTW, when you visit Australia, realize that you also have to know all the acronyms and nicknames for common words.

The Gardens are divided into three zones. We spent most of our time in the central Botanical Gardens, which you will see when you scroll down. One Australian website referred to the central area as a Victorian pleasure garden.

Ballarat Botanical GardensOn either side of the park entrance, there are open parkland buffers known as the North and South Gardens. On this summer day, families and lovers lounged on the cool grass under the shade trees.

The pair of marble lions situated just inside the gates began guarding the entrance to the garden in 1893.

The Gardens celebrated its sesquicentenary (150 years old) in 2007.

The South Gardens

Practically every Australian park I toured honored their soldiers in some way. The Ballarat Gardens feature Australia’s Ex-Prisoner of War Memorial, designed by local artist Peter Blizzard. Opened in 2004, the 130-meter long granite wall has the names of 35,000 Australian Prisoners of War etched into it, 8,600 of whom died and are buried on foreign soil.

Ballarat Botanical GardensTeacher, Carol determined that I would LEARN everything about Australia during this trip. She took it easy on me right after lunch as we strolled along the moving POW memorial. I guess she hadn’t learned about all 35,000 names either.

However, when we marched down Prime Minister Lane, it was a different story. Carol told me about the first, the best, and the worst Prime Ministers.

Here are some Wiki-facts to test your memory for the quiz at the end of this post.  Prime Ministers Avenue is set within Horse Chestnut Avenue. Alfred Deakin founded the Federation of Australia Deakin and served as the first Federal Member for Ballarat and the second Prime Minister.

I tried as hard as I could to memorize all the names, faces and fun facts as she enthusiastically told me about each one. TC History Gal should be good at this, right?

Ballarat Botanical GardensThe flat pathway through the shade of beautiful trees on a quiet afternoon caused me to zone out.  I enjoyed the experience of being in a new place with hospitable people. Conversations buzzed around me like busy mosquitoes. Speaking of mosquitoes, the tiny insects may have had their way with this Prime Minister.

Ouch!

Ballarat Botanical GardensMaybe it was because their names were etched in gold, too light to read. It certainly was not the hot pumpkin soup. Needless to say, Carol may have struck out on this teaching venture. The good news is that if you want to know the Australian Prime Ministers, they are listed here.

The Center Zone

Opened in 1995, Bob Clark donated two million dollars to build the Conservatory to honor his Grandfather Robert Clark – co-founder of The Courier newspaper.

To the north of the roundabout stood the heritage statuary pavilion. This historic-looking building housed the Stoddart Statue collection. The group of statues consists of 12 white marble figures from Italy donated by Thomas Stoddart in 1884.
Vandals exist even in Australia, and they damaged the statues. So after nearly 120 years of roaming free in the 99-acre park, the figures crowded into to this pavilion home in 2002.
Ballarat Botanical GardensRebekah flirted with us while trying to keep fresh in her hot summer garb. I sympathized. It felt warm enough to me to wear different clothes. Maybe not that open, though!
Ballarat Botanical Gardens Modesty stood serenely behind her glazed window. She allowed us to glimpse her beauty beneath her sheer drapes. Judging by her straight, slim toes, she was pretty foxy in her day. But she did not look like she had much of a sense of humor.

The Conservatory

North Gardens

I read that the remains of a zoo dot the North Gardens. Either we did not visit that, or I fell asleep under a tree, and a lion ate me.

Link to This Post!

If you have been to Ballarat and have written a post about it, feel free to link an article in the comment section. I don’t know about other readers, but I’ll check it out!

Ballarat Botanical Gardens
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Quiz

Who was Australia’s second Prime Minister?

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Oh no! There’s a Turkey in Your Garden

May Dreams Gardens #15 Australia

If you miss Ballarat, you miss Australia. Forget Sydney. Sovereign Hill went down in history and stayed there. Like going to Colonial Williamsburg, VA in the United States, or Mackinaw Island, MI or Columbia, CA visitors step back in time when they walk the city’s streets.

garden turkey
Sovereign Hill living the dream, steeped in Australian Gold Rush history.

“Oh my dear man, would you care to tour my garden?”

How could he refuse such an offer?

garden turkey
Peek-a-boo We have a guest. Let’s hide.

Guests are easy to spot. They dress funny.

garden turkey
Keep looking up.

How delicate the tiny petals looked, so romantic.

“These  would look lovely in a bouquet on the table for tea, would they not?”

“Perfect like you, my dear.”

garden turkey
What’s that?

“Are those flowers moving. There’s not a wee bit of air moving.”

“Indeed, I do not feel anything but the scorching sun. I’m wearing my coolest dress today.”

“It flatters you, dear woman.”

“And are you keeping cool in your dapper black?”

“I’m not fussed about this suit.”

“Don’t get your knickers in a knot, my dear. We’ll have a spot of tea, straight way.”

garden turkey
These look like basil and azalea to me, but what do you think, Carol or Carol?

“What do you think of these muted colors, dear man?”

“Most muted, yes indeed. Most muted.”

garden turkey
There’s the culprit.

“There, I saw it again. A bit too much movement.”

“Ah, it’s nothing to rot your socks, sir. It is simply my turkey. He wanders the garden looking for a shady spot.

“I think I’d like to join him.”

garden turkey
I’m quite beautiful, don’t you think?

“Let’s get you to the porch for a lot of iced tea and maybe Sarah has baked some meat pies and pavlova.”

“That sounds lovely. It sounds like you have everything all sorted. Good on ya.”

“Thank you my dear. We’re in a good posi here on the veranda, don’t you think?”

“I’m enjoying shade and my lot of tea. Thanks for inviting me in to see your garden, and the surprise turkey.”

“It’s been my pleasure, sir.”

garden turkey

Have a lovely Sunday, and don’t forget to visit Carol and her May Gardens.

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Smile Good Lookin’

Cee’s Oddball Photo Challenge

Australia #11

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone. Hope you have fun today!

Leanne Cole and her friend Suzanne took Carol and me to Healesville Sanctuary to get a closer look at wild animals in Australia.

Some of the critters there were just there to look good and have fun. They smiled constantly.

smile good lookin'
Say Cheese!

When in Rome, do what the Romans do, correct? So this is what the Aussie Romans did.

smile good lookin'
This is slippery.

It looks like fun, don’t you think?

smile good lookin'
You can do it!

I did not want to get on the lizard. Way too slippery and high! Trust me, stabilization shoes do not do a thing for you when you are sitting on a polished statue. Not even this friendly platypus budged an inch to help us stay on!

smile good lookin'
Hold tight to whaaaaaaa?

And did you see his mischievous little smile?

For more oddball posts check out Cee’s place.

view in the loo

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Check out my FB page at I appreciate everyone’s support! I support and visit others. Have the best of times!