Popularly referred to as the ‘land of the white clouds’, New Zealand is undoubtedly one of the finest places on the planet to visit, for it comprises a host of attractions sure to appeal to a variety of ages. A nation more famous for the ‘All Blacks’ rugby team in turn provides both locals and tourists with a chance to savour the lusher, greener, and more beautiful side of the country at the Dunedin Botanic Garden. Flanked by long gardens, ponds, and a wide array of plant life, the area boasts as being the country’s first ever botanic garden.
Found in central Dunedin on New Zealand’s South Island, the garden, now in its 150th year of existence, is often the centre of activity as it is found near to the University of Otago and the North East Valley. Founded in 1863, the garden is divided into two sections: the upper gardens and lower gardens. Its 28 hectares of lush greenery includes in excess of 6,800 plant species and features wood pigeons, tui, and wild native bellbirds.
Nature lovers would be thrilled to learn that the garden is filled with rich varieties of plants from all parts of the world. These include North Asia, the Mediterranean, Himalayas, the Central, North and South America, and of course, Southern Africa. Each collection should be closely observed for it provides viewers with a glimpse of breathtaking beauty and pageantry that only the Dunedin Botanic Garden may lay claim to.
The Alpine House features a series of alpine plants that warrant an eye for detail to fully appreciate its delicate nature. Species of Fritillaria which bloom from spring through till summer together with Arisaema and Haemanthus can be viewed in one’s own time. The Camellia Collection, which was introduced in the year 1980, is a large expanse of over 500 varieties of Camellia while one may call at the Winter Garden Glasshouse, which is made up of three sections. The Tropical House being the first depicts a collection of shrubs, palms, tropical trees, and cycads. The East Wing is where one will find peace lilies, orchids, bromeliads a whole lot more. The West Wing features plants that grow in the African and American continents; with Cacti and succulents being its prized possessions.
If it’s roses that you’re after, perhaps the Rose Garden would work its magic on you and offer you some of the world’s popular species. From alba, centifolia and damask to even hybrid tea and climbing roses, a vibrant variety can be viewed at this truly astounding destination. The area also sees the annual rhododendron festival, which is celebrated every October. Dunedin Botanic Garden was also the recipient of the rank of “Garden of Significance” presented by the New Zealand Garden, and it is one of five such gardens to be awarded this honour.
Should you be planning a visit to the area, consider staying at any one of the Dunedin hotels in the vicinity which will provide easy access to the premises. From all the New Zealand hotels on offer, Millennium & Copthorne Hotels NZ would be a good bet.
Chandrishan Williams is a travel writer who writes under the pen name, Caleb Falcon. He specializes in writing content based on the many exciting world adventures that await intrepid travellers.