Where to See Spectacular Autumn Colour in Melbourne this Season
Ok to be fair, you're going to see autumn colour in Melbourne no matter where you look! The city is covered in Elm, Ash and Maple trees (courtesy of the homesick English trying to bring a little of the mother country to their new land), so chances are your suburban street is a riot of colour at the moment.
For the show-stopping big guns though, you're going to want to hit up these places for an eyeful of fiery glory - don't forget your camera!
Fitzroy Gardens is 64 acres of leafy brilliance on top of what was once a swampy creek draining into the Yarra River.
Reminiscent of Victorian era landscaping, you'll find in the gardens an ornamental lake, a cafe, a conservatory, James Cook's English cottage, a model tudor village, fairy tree, fountains, sculptures and a rotunda amongst its magnificent tree-lined avenues.
It's these avenues that will afford you the most incredible view of autumn foliage thanks to the stately elms that line the paths, actually set out in a criss-cross pattern that mirrors the union flag. The leaves that fall are gigantic, and are plenty of fun to tramp through and throw around.
Find it: Wellington Parade, East Melbourne
A stroll away sees you at Carlton Gardens, outside the Melbourne Museum and the Royal Exhibition Centre, in Carlton.
Among the gardens, flowerbeds, ornamental lakes, and elaborate fountains (including the very famous Victorian-era Hochgurtel Fountain at the end of the avenue where you're sure to find a bride or two any day of the week), you'll find mature European trees in their full show-off state during autumn.
You can't miss them across the 64 acres, whether you're taking the kids to the playground, playing tennis, having a picnic, or just taking a shortcut from Nicholson Street. It's a popular spot to go every March/April, and you'll never be disappointed for colour!
Find it: 1-111 Carlton St, Carlton
Bright Autumn Festival
An entire festival of autumn colour? OH GO ON THEN!
A full 10-day celebration of the spectacular seasonal foliage in the valleys of Victoria's Alpine High Country is truly not to be missed. A bit of elevation and you've got yourself a show-pony autumn with incredible photos to match. It's the perfect time to head mountainside and maybe cosy up in a log-fired cabin somewhere overnight to make a real deal of it.
While you're there, take in the Wandi Nut Festival, where locals gather to make homemade goodies from the heritage apples that litter the grass verges and blackberries that grow to celebrate the harvest; the Bright Brewery Bush dance, an Instameet for budding social photographers, the Bright Art Gallery's Autumn Exhibition, the Metal and Wood day and a concert at the Community Centre.
Find it: Ireland st, Bright, Victoria
For more info: brightautumnfestival.org.au
Alfred Nicholas Memorial Gardens
Many people will tell you that to really get stuck into autumn goodness, you need to go to the incredibly picturesque Alfred Nicholas Memorial Gardens on the Burnham Beeches estate in the Dandenong Ranges.
The paths that cross the spectacular gardens roll out under a canopy of soaring Mountain Ash Trees, all of them in full multicoloured glroy.
In amongst the Gardens you'll also find waterfalls, water features and its iconic ornamental lake and boathouse, perfect for that heirloom family snapshot.
While you're there, take in the fantastic blend of native and exotic trees including ginkgoes, maples and liquid ambers that provide transeasonal foliage, and extra olour is provided throughout the year by a variety of flowering exotic shrubs, bulbs and trees.
Find it: 1A Sherbrooke Rd, Sherbrooke
Cloudehill Nursery and Garden
Cloudehill is another jaw-dropping spot for autumn hues, with the perennial borders still very full for the first weeks of March, before softening to "autumn effects". The ornamental grasses get into the spirit of things with their beiges and tawny crimsons, and the weeping maples turn to the colour of the setting sun. The huge Enkianthus perulatus by the summer house sink into soft purple, then erupt to a slow burning crimson, the temple pool fills with lemon and pink leaves. Just a reminder again about that camera!
Beeches throughout the gardens fill with russet and gold and the last of the maples flush silk pink and crimson. The summer's green bleeds away from the borders, the last of the salvias are tattered wands of cobalt and pink waving amongst grey lemons and tawny browns before hiding away for the winter.
While you're there, head into the Seasons Restaurant for a bite, or grab your own plants at the Diggers Garden Shop.
Admission to the Gardens is $10 for adults and children are free.
Find it: 89 Olinda-Monbulk Rd, Olinda, VIC, Australia
For more info: cloudehill.com.au
Main image credit: Visit Victoria