Microbiologist-turned-homemaker, she is a foodie with a flair for cooking. An avid traveller and voracious reader, she also loves to paint and indulges in photography.
Published April 15th 2015
Who can make a better invitation for an outing on a lazy weekend than clouds idling past the sky and a cool breeze pacifying the outside hot temperature. Thus, conditions welcoming I, accompanied by my husband, set out to explore the Royal Botanic Garden of Sydney unbeknownst to the pleasant surprise the day had in store for us. Located right beside Sydney Opera House, the garden provides a perfect day long getaway.
A Hidden Gem Always preferring public transport, we took the train to Circular Quay. Reaching our station we sauntered towards the Royal Botanic Garden not knowing what gem lay hidden from our sight waiting to welcome us. Strolling on the concrete pathways we came across signs pointing to us the distance to Government House. Curious, we decided to go and find out.
Minutes later we were awestruck. Staring in our faces, right ahead of us was the yellow sandstone edifice which is the residential address of the Governor of New South Wales. Better known as the Government House, it looked more like a castle. Gravitated by its beauty, we hurried past the main gate towards the ticketing office on our left. We got the tickets which to our amazement were absolutely free (requiring just an ID proof).
The guided tours were carried out in groups of twenty visitors. The grandeur and magnificence of the building was breath-taking at close look. We had more surprises for us in store inside. The entrance door opened into a small chamber which led into the major hall, the walls of which were adorned by the family coat of arms of the respective Governors. We were then led into the official chamber of the Governor by the sweet and energetic girl who was guiding the tour. The dining hall was majestic. Calculated restorations, refurbishing and decorations over time added to the sheer brilliance of the mansion. The paintings complemented the artwork on the ceilings which differed from room to room. We were ushered into the living room, and finally, into the grand ballroom. The 45 minutes tour ended and we found ourselves out in the gorgeous garden dotted by flowering shrubs that spanned across half of the Government House grounds. The other half was covered with trees and lustrous lawns.
The opening hours are 10:00am to 4:00pm from Monday to Thursday and 10:00am to 3:00pm from Friday to Sunday. Photography is completely prohibited inside the building so you can leave all your belongings at the ticketing office. If you plan to spend a day at the Royal Botanic Garden, make a stop at the Government House. If taking public transport, get down at the Circular Quay Station and turn towards Sydney Opera House. You will find the Moore Steps to your right on the way which will lead to Macquarie Street. Just across the street is the botanical garden and the pavement leading towards Government House. Wishing you a memorable time...