The Wilson Botanical Gardens are situated at the foothills of the Dandenong Ranges. The gardens offer 39 hectares of parkland. Which was originally a quarry and produced some of Melbourne’s highest quality basalt. The quarry was founded by William Wilson in 1859 and operated until 1976. The family generously donated the land to the community.
Wilson Botanical Gardens
The Wilson Botanical Gardens have an amazing variety of flowers and gardens, with a number of spectacular views throughout the park. You’ll find an abundance of wildlife and there’s many places to go bird watching. Visit the Anniversary and Bassalt Lakes, or take a walk through the Rose gardens. Relax and take a seat on one of the wooden sun lounges at the Marshes water’s edge, or go for a run or walk around the park. The Wilson Botanical Gardens is a place of beauty and serenity and has something for everyone to do.
What to do
- Get a map and explore the numerous walking trails throughout the park.
- The Rose Gardens are located next to the Visitor Centre. They surround a lawn area with a center wishing well. There is an arbor with a bench seating, a small pond, bush roses, standards and climbing roses.
- The beauty of the Wilson Botanical Gardens attracts a number wedding goers, who have their wedding photography done onsite.
- The Marsh is next to the main entrance and is home to a variety of wildlife. Water fowl, ducks and turtles. There are wooden sun lounges at water’s edge which you can use to chill-ax on.
- The park has two lakes which were former quarries. The larger lake is called “Anniversary Lake” and the smaller is known as “Basalt Lake”. This has a sheer basalt rock face to the east of the lake and a boardwalk was constructed on its western edge.
- There are two main lookouts in the park. Hoo Hoo Lookout Tower offers impressive views over the surrounding suburbs. The climb to the lookouts also offers a great workout. There is a steep pathway leading up to the lookout. There is another vantage point at Ben’s Lookout.
- Go running. The undulating and at times hilly paths offer the perfect environment for a high level workout.
- Bring your camera. You will be guaranteed of a good snap or three.
- Bird watching. The park is home to a wide variety of birds. There is a bird watching area located at the edge of the Basalt Lake.
- You can bring your dogs along to the park, however they must remain on a lead at all times. Be prepared to clean up after your dog.
For the family
- The Wilson Botanic Park is an ideal location to host a picnic. Not only is there plenty of lawns where you could lay a picnic blanket. There are also 3 BBQ areas (between the Marsh and Anniversary Lake. Near the Children’s Playground and on the Outer Loop to the west of the Marsh.
- An amphitheater is located next to the Anniversary Lake. The amphitheater is used for a number of events throughout the summer. This includes the popular Jazz and Swing evenings.
- There is a Children’s Playground (located behind the Marsh). The playground offers slides, ladders, walkways, tunnels, a fireman’s pole, a see-saw, swings, a flying fox and ramps.
- For the bigger kids there is a designated Ball Game Area. Which is a large grassed area near Ben’s Lookout.
Wilson Botanical Gardens
668 Princes Highway
Berwick, Vic 3806
7:00 am – 6:00 pm
7:00 am – 9:00 pm (during daylight savings)
Visitor Center open 10.00 am – 4.00 pm daily
Wilson Botanic Park Berwick is open every day except Christmas day and Good Friday, and will be closed on Code Red fire danger days.
Telephone: (03) 9707 5818
History of the park
Wilson Botanical Gardens was originally a quarry. Which produced some of Melbourne’s highest quality basalt. The quarry was founded by William Wilson in 1859 and operated until 1976. The Wilson family then donated the land to the community. The City of Casey started redevelopment of the site into a Botanic gardens in 1988. And was open four years later in 1992.
Whilst the quarry was operational. Many fossils were found onsite. Some were more than 22 million years old. They include fossilized wood, leaves and pollens of flowering plants and conifers. These fossil sites boast both tropical and temperate species. It is rare to find these varieties in one place. And indicates that the site was tropical rain forest many, many, many years ago.
Click here to visit the Botanical Gardens Website