In the heart of the city of Auckland, New Zealand you will find the Auckland Domain – containing rolling parklands and the War Memorial Museum. The park is big enough to drive through and is actually Auckland’s oldest park! The park sits atop an old crater from the Pukekawa volcano – where the museum sits is at the top of the crater ring.
Built in the early 1900’s, the Wintergardens in the Auckland Domain consist of two Victorian-style glasshouses with a central courtyard and sunken pool. One of the glasshouses is a cooler climate, allowing seasonal changes, while the other is heated to a tropical climate. It was a sunny winter day when we visited, allowing the blue of the sky to peek through the frosted glass. There is something other-worldly about olden glass houses that makes you feel like you’re stepping into another age! The Wintergardens are also available for weddings, which would make for a mystical day!
Just off the left side of the central courtyard lies the entrance to the Fernery(!). It’s easy to miss when you’ve got your eyes on the big and beautiful greenhouses but don’t forget to visit it! The Fernery is grown among an old abandoned quarry, where the wooden remains give a pergola-like effect while the ferns have free-reign. There is a path to walk around the Fernery and also steps down in the middle, which gives you a view from another angle and shows you just how large the place actually is!
The Auckland Domain Wintergardens & Fernery are a delight to visit, even if you want to just chill on a park bench in the sunny courtyard. Its a quiet and lush escape from the surrounding city, well worth dropping in on if you are nearby!
Auckland Domain, Wintergardens & Fernery
Open 9-4:30 in Winter, 9-5:30 Summer
Admission is free
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