The closing of winter brings more than just warm weather, fresh cocktails and music festivals. It also means the kickstart of spring and a whole lot of flower antics to plan your life around.
This year, there’s an epic slew of flower festivals worth marking into the calendar with markets, next level flower displays and illuminated gardens. So, let’s just say your springtime road trips are well and truly set out for you.
Here are six flower festivals around Sydney worth getting excited about.
Blue Mountains Daffodil Festival
This annual Daffodil Festival celebrates everything to do with the yellow flower, which just so happens to be one of the first bulbs to appear as winter eases into spring. There are over 75 varieties of daffodils at the garden, so start rounding up the crew for an epic day trip.
Where: Blue Mountains Botanic Garden
When: Saturday 24 August – Sunday 1 September
Carnival Of Colour
For the bloomin’ best time of the year, the Hunter Valley Gardens steps it up a notch to showcase its new array of flowers. You can expect next-level flower displays put together by the Garden’s insanely talented horticultural team, collections of hanging baskets and a Galaxy of Gnomes. Head here for more.
Where: Hunter Valley Gardens
When: Sunday 1 September – Monday 30 September
No biggie, but Floriade is pretty much Australia’s biggest celebration dedicated to springtime. Hosted in the nation’s capital, this festival is well worth the road trip with a sling of market stalls, food vendors, live entertainment and a casual million-and-something blooms on display (so charge your phones). After dark, Nightfest will also come alive (from October 3 until October 6) with interactive displays, comedy and an illuminated playground. Head here for more.
Where: Commonwealth Park, Canberra
When: Saturday 14 September – Monday 13 October
Tulip Time in the Southern Highlands is the (unofficial) spring celebration. If you’re keen to surround yourself with a kaleidoscopic carpet of tulips, then this blowout is definitely one to add to your calendar. Here you’ll find a mass of 90,000 tulips in the Corbett Gardens, live music and lots of market stalls. And this year, there’s a number of twilight sessions from Glebe Park to Corbett Gardens to get around, where you’ll be able to explore the gardens at the golden hour.
When: Tuesday 24 September – Monday 7 October
Wild About Waratahs Festival
Wild About Waratahs is one of the Botanic Gardens' signature annual events. This festival is loaded with a heap of tours to take, workshops to get flower savvy, an ikebana exhibition (a Japanese flower arrangement) and all the food stalls to fuel your flower adventures. Head here for more info.
Where: Blue Mountains Botanic Gardens
When: Saturday 28 September – Monday 7 October
Leura Gardens Festival
Leura Gardens Festival is now in its 55th year and is set to take over the Upper Blue Mountains for two weekends. The blaze of springtime colour here means you’re in for all the azaleas, dogwoods, camellias, perennials and beautiful springtime bulbs. You’ll be able to work your way through a bunch of smaller and larger gardens, each with its own distinctive theme and character. You can head here for more info.
When: Saturday 5 October – Sunday 13 October
Plus, here are all the prettiest flower walks to do near Sydney.
Image credit: Melanie Dretvic.