You are here

Explore - for visitors with limited mobility

Exploring the gardens

The gardens are endowed by the beauty of the surrounding natural environment. Tall Mountain Ash (Eucalyptus regnans) provide a magnificent vertical accent to the gardens. Mountain Ash are the tallest flowering trees in the world.

Magnificent views overlook Silvan Reservoir, the Yarra Valley, Warburton Ranges and Mount Baw Baw. Many species of birds and animals frequent the gardens. The resident lyrebirds may occasionally be seen or heard.

Take your time and enjoy all of the constantly changing vistas of the gardens, or if you would prefer, take a shorter walk to specific area of the gardens.

Should you decide to walk the entire garden (a round trip of approximately 5km) you will encounter some steeper grades.

The friendly staff at the main entrance will be delighted to advise and direct you to areas of the gardens that most interest you.

Accessibility information

The main entry into the gardens is via the rear deck and ramp. The ramp is steep and has a moderate cross slope. The staff will open the main road gate upon request for easier access to the garden.

Ramp from the visitor centre
Pictured above - Rear deck and ramp to gardens

Immediately below the gift shop is the Main Trail. The first 100 metres of this path is steep with gradients up to approximately 1 in 7. After the initial descent there is a lookout over the rockery below.

main trail

Main trail - Rockery LookoutPictured above - Main trail to Rockery Lookout

The main trail continues through the Magnolia Lawn, the Conifer Lawn, Lyrebird Garden, Cherry Tree Grove, Protea Garden and the Camellia Garden. This section is approximately 1.5 kilometres in length with moderate to easy gradients of less than 1 in 14.

Main trail to Camelia Garden

Main trail to camellia garden
Pictured above - Main trail to Camellia Garden

Main trail - Camelia garden

Camelia gardensPictured above - The Camellia garden

In addition to the gardens there are spectacular mountain views.

Beyond the Camellia Garden the path drops away around the corner to the Maddenii Lawn, with gradients as steep as 1 in 6. From the Maddenii Lawn the path loops around and heads back towards the entrance and there is a long steep climb below Serenity Point to Cherry Tree Grove.

This section can be avoided by taking the link path from the main trail at Lyrebird Garden through the Conifer Lawn. This link path is sealed and has a maximum gradient of 1 in 14. The path to the lake has a moderate maximum gradient of 1 in 14.

The lake has a fully accessible viewing Rotunda and a boardwalk along the path.

Rotunda at the lake

Boardwalk at the lake
Pictured above - Boardwalk and rotunda at the Lake

Beyond the lake the path climbs initially at a gradient approaching 1 in 10 before a steep section through the Rockery. The steepest section through the Rockery approaches a gradient of 1 in 6.

The Lake to the Rockery

Lake to the Rockery

Path from Lake to Rockery Path from Lake to Rockery
Pictured above - The Lake to the Rockery

In the Kurume Bowl is a pond with accessible boardwalked viewing areas.

From the pond the path climbs through the Sensory Garden and the Cherry Lawn picnic area. The climb is moderate except for the final section back onto the main road back to the Visitor’s Centre. There is a short 10 metre section with a 1 in 5 grade. The sensory garden is an accessible area of the garden.

Path to Cherry lawn

rhody gardens - cherry lawn (picnic tables)
Pictured above - Picnic facilities at Cherry Lawn

Toilet facilities are available at the end of the top road past the nursery area. While grab rails are provided the entry is narrow and not suitable for wheelchair users. There are no unisex facilities available here as there is at the gift shop.

Toilets at the nursery Toilet facilities at the nursery
Pictured above - Toilet facilities near the nursery

The total length of the path around the garden is 4.5 kilometres on the sealed paths. Most of the steeper sections can be avoided by following the path through the Cherry Lawn to the pond and rejoining the main trail before the steep section through the Rockery. This gives easier access to the upper main trail.