Popular internationally for years, garden tourism is increasingly making its mark as a tourism trend in Australia. This is a niche area of travel (like agritourism and health tourism) that attracts those keen to explore and absorb nature for its “green” health benefits. And it has significant and underappreciated potential in the sector.
Our Certificate of Garden Tourism is a professional development course that will help you plan, develop and manage tours, events and tourism destinations that revolve around gardening. Ideal for gardeners, garden centre staff and tourism operators, this garden tourism course will give you insights into people who not just travel to see gardens, but spend money in their associated cafes, restaurants and gift shops.
You will also explore the viability of events and their components, learn how to develop effective marketing strategies to sell their benefits, and gain insights into increasing their financial business outcomes.
Outcomes achieved by undertaking a garden tourism course include:
- Learning about the scope and nature of garden tourism
- Exploring the different types of gardens
- Studying the place of gardens in broader tourism
- Gaining insights into the who visits gardens or garden events and why
- Examining problems
- Understanding garden destinations
- Learning about financial viability
- Exploring the types of tourist attractions
- Studying garden events
- Gaining insights into add-on income
- Examining how to create and manage a destination
- Understanding what makes a viable garden tourism destination
- Learning about planning a destination
- Exploring locations, regions and countries
- Gaining an understanding of managing a destination
- Studying garden events and the different types
- Gaining insights into when and where to conduct garden events
- Examining how to finalise your plan
- Understanding non-garden related events
- Learning how to manage garden events — preparation, planning, development and evaluation
- Exploring how to initiate a garden event
- Gaining an understanding of set up and pack up/knockdown
- Studying event issues
- Gaining insights into managing visitor access
Seven Famous International Gardens
Throughout history, gardens have been spaces of creativity and contemplation, allowing people to fully immerse themselves in nature. These public spaces involve meticulous planning and careful landscape design, and allow visitors to experience local and exotic plant life while gaining inspiration for their own gardens. Here are seven of the world’s most famous.
#1 – Brooklyn Botanic Garden, USA
Founded in 1910, this 52-acre haven has over 14,000 plants spread across multiple areas. Highlights include its Japanese garden, a water garden, a fragrance garden for the visually impaired, and an English garden themed around plants named in Shakespearean plays.
#2 – Gardens of Versailles, France
This UNESCO World Heritage site sprawls across almost 2000 acres of land, and sits just west of the Palace of Versailles. A classic French garden focused on order and symmetry, the manicured lawns are dotted with flowers, and fountains and sculptures that date back to the time of Louis XIV.
#3 – Kew Gardens, UK
Located in south London, this garden is renowned for housing more than 50,000 living plants. Highlights include an arboretum, bamboo garden, the world’s largest Victorian glasshouse, and the Princess of Wales Conservatory which contains plants from ten different climate zones.
#4 – Villa d’Este Gardens, Italy
An international favourite beloved for its opulent fountains and terraced gardens, this 16th-century villa is located in Tivoli, outside of Rome. Built for the son of a nobleman, it is a wonderful example of an Italian Renaissance garden, where the landscape seeks to inspire contemplation.
#5 – Keukenhof, Netherlands
If you’re a fan of tulips, don’t miss a pilgrimage to the world famous Keukenhof in Lisse. Seven million bulbs are planted each year including tulips, crocuses, daffodils and hyacinths. It creates a dazzling visual to the more than one million visitors who flock to the gardens during the spring flowering season.
#6 – Butchart Gardens, Canada
Located in British Columbia, this garden covers fifty-five acres and includes twenty-six greenhouses, which have been wowing tourists for over one hundred years. Fifty full-time gardeners tend to this national treasure, and one of its most famous features is the Sunken Garden.
#7 – Ryōan-ji Garden, Japan
Nestled within a Buddhist Temple in Kyoto, this is a the epitome of a a Japanese “dry landscape” (karesansui) garden. This Zen garden is characteristed by large rock formations, and is meant to be viewed while seated. Anyone who can see all of the stones at once is said to have obtained the ultimate in enlightenment.
Australia’s Favourite Gardens
According to many tourism experts, garden tourism is the second most popular “niche” travel experience — the first being food-related tourism. Here are seven amazing Australian gardens to offer you the ultimate in green-tinged inspiration!
- Brisbane Botanic Gardens, Mt Coot-tha — Opening in 1976, these gardens cover over 52 hectares of land. Guided tours and self-guided walks are on offer and themed sections include the Japanese Gardens, the Tropical Dome and the largest collection of Australian native rainforest trees in the world.
- Royal Botanic Gardens of Sydney, Farm Cove — Wrapped around Sydney Harbour, these gardens offer glimpses of the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Bucket list exhibits include Palm Grove and the spectacular Succulent Garden and Rare and Threatened Plant Garden.
- Royal Botanic Garden Victoria, Melbourne. This garden has been operating for over 170 years and has a truly international approach. Diverse plant collections include roses, camellias, rainforest flora, succulents, herbs, perennials and the Rare and Threatened Species Collection.
- Botanic Gardens of South Australia, Adelaide. These architecturally stunning gardens feature the International Rose Garden, the First Creek Wetland, and The Garden of Health, where you can learn about the plants that prevent and cure disease.
- Kings Park and Botanic Garden, Perth — This is one of the largest inner-city parks in the world (it covers over 400 hectares) and offers spectacular views as well as bushland walking trails and over 3000 species of the state’s unique flora.
- Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens, Hobart — This is Australia’s second oldest Botanic Gardens and renowned as one of the country’s best “cool climate” gardens. It covers over fourteen hectares and has a number of unique collections including the country’s only Subantarctic Plant House.
- Australian National Botanic Gardens, Canberra — A heritage-listed Botanical Garden, it was established in 1949 and features over 83,000 individual plants arranged over 40 hectares of themed sections in the glasshouses and nursery.
Open Garden Programs
Although the nation-wide Australian Open Garden Scheme folded in 2015, some states still run their own local “open garden” organisations — which helps ensure the garden tourism sector keeps thriving! They are typically not-for-profit groups run by volunteers who help garden owners open their gardens over weekends to raise money for various charities. They include:
- Open Gardens South East Queensland – Open Gardens SEQ allows visitors to explore some of Brisbane, the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast’s most stunning gardens.
- Open Gardens Victoria – This organisation runs an open garden program in Melbourne city and in rural locations and country towns across the state. Typically around twelve gardens are open through the spring period of September to November, and others during the autumn season
- Open Gardens SA – Open Gardens South Australia was first established in 2015, and in its first twelve months opened over fifty private gardens, welcoming more than 20,000 visitors.
- Open Gardens West Coast – Western Australia’s open gardens scheme launched in 2016 and facilitates the opening of gardens across the state for public viewing. It also promotes garden design, horticultural education and ecological sustainability.
Gain the confidence to plan, develop and manage gardening events, tours and popular “green” destinations with a garden tourism course, such as our Certificate of Garden Tourism.