Life is good when you sit on a park bench beneath the shade of a tree by the lily-filled ponds in these classical, English-style gardens in central Perth.
The formal Queens Gardens make up a beautiful botanical paradise just to the east of the central business district of Perth. Not just any old park, the complex has some surprising features.
Opened in 1899 after a former clay quarry belonging to the local brickworks was partially filled in with vegetation and ponds, these 3.3 hectares (8 acres) of gardens have become one with Perth’s history.
Wander along the paths that take you through the well-manicured lawns and neatly kept plants of the gardens. Look at the wide variety of shrubs and trees and the bright displays of flowers in the flowerbeds. See how the old clay pits now create a series of ponds, which are covered in lilies and teaming with life.
Head to the heart of the park to find an eye-catching statue of the immortal children’s movie character Peter Pan. The statue was erected in 1927 for the children of W.A. and is signed by the creator of Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie. It is an exact copy of the original statue in Kensington Gardens in London because it was cast from the same mould designed by George Frampton from England.
Look for another smaller, more unusual connection to London. Beside one of the ponds is a park bench from the romantic English movie Notting Hill. The inscribed bench was purchased by a Perth man as special gift for his partner. When their relationship unfortunately ended, he donated it to the gardens with the hope that other romantic couples might enjoy it.
Keep the romance going by discreetly watching one of the many weddings that take place in the park. The park’s rotunda is a popular choice of location for ceremonies because of its idyllic setting. Bridal parties often pose on one of the picturesque bridges for classic wedding photos.
Queens Gardens are situated right beside the imposing WACA sports grounds. Street parking is available, but during events at the WACA it’s better to walk or cycle here or to take public transport. The gardens are open to the public at all times and entry is free of charge. Toilet facilities, drinking fountains and seating are all available.