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Dunedin gardens and parks attractions & things to do

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Dunedin, Otago

Dunedin is a treasure for garden lovers, Dunedin Botanic Garden, Larnach Castle & Olveston Victorian & Edwardian elegance, Chinese scholar garden, Lan Yuan and the rhododendron glory in Port Chalmers former quarry are among glorious cool climate gardens to visit in Dunedin. Spend several days exploring Dunedin & Otago Peninsula’s botanical glory.

Frequently Asked Questions - Dunedin & Otago Peninsula Gardens

The best places to observe spring flowering rhododendrons are:

  • Dunedin Botanic Garden, Dunedin
  • Tannock Glen Garden, Dunedin
  • Glenfalloch Woodland Garden, Otago Peninsula
  • Lady Thorn Dell, Port Chalmers

Dunedin offers rhododendrons ideal growing conditions creating one of New Zealand’s glorious spring displays of mature flowering tree plants.

The best time of the year to visit Dunedin and Otago Peninsula gardens and parks is spring (mid-October to late November) for the massive displays of flowering rhododendrons, azaleas and camellias.

Summer is another highlight with extensive herbaceous borders providing lovers of annual flowers, bulbs and cottage style gardens immense pleasure.


Situated just below latitude 45° south, the Dunedin Botanic Garden Camellia Collection is the worlds’ most southern ‘International Camellia Garden of Excellence’.

Dunedin Botanic Garden covers an area of 28 hectares from 25m to 85m above sea level. It is divided into two quite distinct areas.  The larger ‘upper garden’ provides varied topography on a sunny north facing hillside. The formal ‘lower garden’ is where the Camellia Collection is located. Bordered on two sides by streams, this flat plain of alluvial soil is friable and well-drained and perfect for camellias.

Source Dunedin Botanic Garden

Yes, you can visit Dunedin & Otago Peninsula Gardens in a day. Start bright and early with a coffee in hand in the Dunedin Botanic Gardens allowing two hours for your personal favourite style of garden, perhaps whisk yourself over to Tannock Glen for spring rhodos (one hour) and finish the day in one of the Otago Peninsula Gardens.


The Dunedin Botanic Garden is enormous. It occupies 30.4 hectares in North Dunedin at an altitude of 25 – 85 metres above sea level.

There is plenty of things for kids to do in the Dunedin Botanic Gardens:

  • Look for lizards in the rock garden
  • Get a packet of duck food from the café and feed the water birds at the pond
  • Explore Dunedin Botanic Garden online resource for a great spot to picnic
  • Download the Dunedin Botanic Garden adventure map and find trees over 150 years old and more

Check out Kiwi Guardians at Dunedin Botanic Garden and get started on a day in the Dunedin Botanic Garden.

The best time of the year to visit Larnach Castle gardens is summer with the herbaceous border in full bloom, the vegetable garden lush with kitchen delights and topiary gleaming with bright new leaves.


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