12 Sep 2022
Nothing heralds the change in season quite like Australia’s wildflowers. From the iconic Sturt Desert Pea amidst the red dirt to jacaranda trees showering suburban streets in purple rain, Australia’s colourful springtime displays have something for everyone.
Photographers and nature lovers across the country flock to the national parks, gardens and festivals to see these incredible blooms in full. There are over 24,000 native Australian wildflower species, with WA alone boasting more than 12,000 varieties (60% of which aren’t found anywhere else in the world).
That makes our native wildflowers pretty special, so if you’re keen to head out and discover our stunning spring landscape, read on.
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In WA, wildflower season starts in the Kimberley in early June and slowly makes its way south. The state is so popular for wildflowers that their ‘Wildflower Way’ is a major tourist attraction, running through nine local government areas north of Perth towards Geraldton.
Coalseam Conservation Park is around 100km east of Geraldton and is one of the world’s most famous places to see wildflowers including yellow and pink everlastings, banksia, mulla mulla and more.
Closer to the capital, head to Perth’s Kings Park and Botanic Gardens for the annual Spring Wildflower Festival celebrating all things about the season.
If you’re visiting Cradle Mountain this spring, you’ll fall in love with the bursts of colour as native blossoms and wildflowers erupt over this stunning landscape. Waratahs, banksia, snow gums and leatherwoods are among the species putting on a show, so it’s a beautiful time of year to explore the national park by foot.
While it sits outside of the wildflower category, the annual Bloomin’ Tulips Festival in Wynyard is a true appreciation of nature. You’ll be forgiven for thinking you’ve landed in Holland with row upon row of tulips turning the landscape into an incredible blanket of colour.
The event runs over three weeks, with plenty of activities including art and photography exhibits, a fun run, and the incredible foreshore markets.
In central Hobart it’s well worth paying a visit to the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens. Pack a picnic to relax as you explore, or take a guided walking tour to discover the stories and history behind their significant plant collection.
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Victoria’s high country swaps the frosts of winter for blankets of delicate flowers as spring comes to life. The Grampians are home to more than 1,000 native wildflower species, turning the famous camping and hiking national park to a kaleidoscope of colour.
In Bright, don’t miss the Bright Spring Festival which runs for ten days in October. With open gardens in dramatic full bloom, workshops, activities and the best in local food and drink, it’s a colourful event for all the senses.
As you explore the alpine valleys, pack your camera and head along the Bogong High Plains Road to Mount Buffalo National Park for stunning views of the local wildflowers.
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SA’s Clare Valley turns golden in the springtime, with fields of yellow canola stretching as far as the eye can see. It’s a bright and beautiful backdrop for days spent wine tasting in quaint cellar doors, strolling through the town, or taking a bike along the famous Riesling Trail.
Just 40 minutes from Port Augusta, Mount Remarkable National Park comes alive with native orchids and the incredible chocolate lily – which even smells like chocolate! Further north in the Flinders Ranges, spring is truly spectacular. In Ikara-Flinders National Park you can catch the ever-impressive Sturt Desert Pea, which is the state’s floral emblem for good reason.
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NEW SOUTH WALES
Sydney’s streets are awash with purple blossom through October and November, as decades-old jacarandas flower. Take a walk through the city from the Royal Botanic Gardens through to Circular Quay and the Rocks to see the purple haze set against the world-famous Harbour. The trail continues to the lower north shore and Kirribilli.
On the north coast, Grafton hosts the country’s longest running flower festival, the Grafton Jacaranda Festival. With more than 2,000 jacaranda trees, the town celebrates with markets, entertainment, parades and the crowing of the year’s Jacaranda Queen.
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Alice Springs Desert Park is a must-visit in Central Australia, with animals, events and tours to help you discover the amazing flora and fauna of the NT. It’s also a top spot for wildflowers, coming to life with delicate blooms and bright colours when the conditions are right. The ‘big 3’ – pink everlasting, poached egg daisy and the annual yellowtop – are abundant each year.
Further afield, the West MacDonnell Ranges, Rainbow Valley and Owen Springs also offer great wildflower spotting – including iconic wattle and varieties of everlasting, daisy, bluebells and mulla mulla.
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Ready to explore the beauty of spring?