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The village of Mt Wilson is a treasure trove of gorgeous private gardens, many of which open to the public in autumn and spring when they are at their most colourful. Breenhold Gardens is one of the first you'll come across at the beginning of The Avenue, a tree-lined beauty in itself.
Breenhold is many gardens within one and it's huge, making it great for those that love their exercise in the form of a good walk. In fact, the heritage-listed estate, gardens and parklands cover over 40-hectares with exotic trees and flowering shrubs from across the globe.
Entering through the main entrance, you're greeted with a lined drive of Cypress trees that immediately make you feel like you're in a forest. Surrounding these soaring conifers are various gardens that each provide something different.
The Compass Garden is notable for its water feature designed in the shape of a cross with its four points and its urn-shaped fountain, whilst the stone-walled Arc and Socrates Gardens give off an old-world feel.
Nearby a number of beautiful terraced walks, guided by stone steps (in particular the Acer Steps and the Laburnum Steps), take you through lovely areas of towering trees that are especially gorgeous in autumn.
In early to mid-April you've got the resplendent yellow leaves of the Golden Elm, the Box Elder Maple, Ash trees and Silver Birch looking impressive, whilst from mid-April to late May the Japanese Maples, Red Maples, Oak and Copper Beech show off their orange and red leaves.
Come spring, early in September you'll want to take in the daffodil lawn, the camelia walk, the weeping cherries and the rhododendron garden. Mid-September is the time when the azalea slope bursts into colour, along with roses, daphne, lavender and lilies. Early October sees magnolias and dogwood in bloom, followed by wisteria in late October.
Nature here also comes in the form of a variety of birds that include parrots, cockatoos, whip birds, lyrebirds and honeyeaters. Their calls and birdsong add to the beauty of a visit to these gardens as does the croaking of frogs at the frog pond off the Holly Walk.
Wooden bench-style seats can be found throughout the gardens for you to sit, relax and take in the beauty. Several lookouts also afford magnificent views over the adjoining Blue Mountains National Park.
There are no cafe or food outlets available here. It's best to bring a picnic and enjoy the extensive lawns. Children are free to run and play to their heart's content. Toilets are available next to the Socrates Garden.
Opening times are 10am-4pm with open dates for 2022 being:-
Autumn - 9th April to 29th May
Spring - 3rd September to 30th October
Entry is $15 per adult and $5 per child. The NSW Discover vouchers are accepted, making this an inexpensive day out.
A map of the gardens can be downloaded here or picked up on arrival.
So connect with nature at this beautiful spot that's a world away from busy city life. It provides such a calming effect, allowing your mind to recharge and it's only 2hrs from Sydney.