The must visit place in Dandenong Ranges, Victoria, Australia

by - 3/20/2018

So Dandenong Ranges are a chain of low laying mountain ranges in the state of Victoria, 35 kms East of Melbourne. Now the first thing that one is expected to experience in the Dandenong is to board the Puffing Billy train. However I learnt later that it runs in Brisbane too! So where is the exclusivity? Anyways, for people used to the mighty Himalayas (ie us) these mountains won't impress you much but the surroundings definitely would! The trees are extra tall and the roads are beautifully winding. Since we visited in spring, the foliage had special colours which was very new for us.

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The Dandenong Ranges has many picturesque parks and we intended to visit the most famous one: Alfred Nicolas Memorial Gardens. It is definitely the most beautiful park of our lives. But our day did not start as planned and I was sure that the park had been closed by the time we reached.
We arrived in Melbourne at around half past 10 in the morning and then immigration and travelling all the way to the city centre by public transport and then checking in, swimming (even for a jiffy) and then renting a car sucked up all our time. My old friend (who now lives in Melbourne) came to visit us and was along with our adventures. So when I was soaking in the warm water, husband and Soniya went to rent the car. By the time we were out in the city driving, it was half past three in the afternoon.
Our original plan was to see the Puffing Billy train at the most picturesque location, Belgrave and then proceed to Alfred Nicolas Gardens. However GPS predicted that we won't be able to reach Belgrave on time and hence we had to ditch the idea altogether. But when we entered the location of Gardens in the GPS, it said that we would reach there around 5 15 PM. Now the Gardens close at 5 PM. Damn. I was super frustrated. First we lose Puffing Billy and now the Gardens. Our first day in Australia was turning out to be fruitless. To top my frustration, the roads in Melbourne were bustling with traffic. It took more time than expected to leave the city and take the highway. At one point, we thought of giving up. What was the point in going all the way to find the Gardens closed? However I thought that I would just get clicked in front of the gate and come back. I was super depressed.
We reached the Garden at 5 30 PM. Me and Soniya ran to enter while husband parked the car. The entire place was deserted. Not a single soul within a periphery of tens of kilometres. It was heavily raining on the way and now that we were out of the car, it was drizzling. The only sound that could be heard was the pitter patter. The gate was open. But the office area was deserted. Good. We ran inside.
The leaves were of the most beautiful colours (brown, red and orange) and there were bright coloured flowers everywhere. We felt that we were in paradise. The rhododendrons were loaded with its colourful blooms and the ground below them were covered with those petals. The trees were sky high tall and the roads were flanked by beautiful flowering plants. It was FREEZING but who cared? I was not even wearing a sweater!

Since it was going to get dark very soon, we went towards the area that fascinated us the most: The lake. There was a lake house too (a wooden one) and the place looked straight out of a Greeting Card. I could not be happier. All my misery vanished and I was on top of the world. This place is a favourite for couple shoots, maternity shoots and for weddings and parties. The reason is very obvious. The place was dreamy.

Soniya did an excellent job in clicking me and husband which is very rare. Usually our tripod does this part. I have decided to share those photos on our anniversary which is going to be my next post.
Although we did not wanted to leave but it getting darker under those tall trees. We sensed that wild animals could be out at any time! So we decided to go back to our car and leave.
This Garden is definitely the most beautiful place in Dandenong Ranges!

Entry: Free
Opening Hours: 10 AM to 5 PM
Park remains open after 5 PM but public facilities and office shut down.

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  1. Loving the background so pretty

  2. How stunning?!! Looks like such a beautiful site!!

    XO, Jessi

  3. All the photos are so amazing! I'm in love!
    Xoxo, Josipa.