Welcome to spring – that wonderful time of year when our jacarandas burst into life and put on the most spectacular displays. And just when you think it can’t get any better, the blossom falls as purple rain, bringing a carpet of colour to cities and parks across the land.
Here are some of the best places to see the jacaranda blooms in 2018.
In sub-tropical Brisbane, the jacarandas bloom throughout October – transforming the hills, park and waterfront with a burst of spring colour. Brisbane’s City Botanical Gardens is the site of the Australia’s first grown jacaranda tree, which was planted in 1864, and to this day the gardens are filled with purple blooms.
You’ll also be treated to a fantastic display when you walk along the stone verandas at the University of Queensland, visit Roma Street Parklands or stroll along the riverside at Kangaroo Point – where the city, river and blooms make for the perfect photo. But for arguably the best floral display in Brisbane, it’s hard to look past New Farm Park, where the entire park is covered in a purple canopy.
You’ll have to leave it later to see Melbourne’s big display – as the jacarandas don’t bloom until December. It’s generally a cooler climate in Victoria, so the jacarandas aren’t as prolific. But take a trip to the University of Melbourne and the Botanic Gardens to find some of the city’s best trees.
Lavender Bay – the name says it all – on Sydney’s north side has tourists flocking in from miles around to see the rich shades of purple. And while you’re on the north shore, check out Woolwich and the leafy suburb of Hunters Hill, where you can book a place on one of their jacaranda walks.
Oxford Street in Paddington and Glebe in the inner west are also popular places for jacaranda spotting – where you can walk the winding streets and pop in to sample some of the best food in Sydney.
But for the most spectacular shots of jacarandas in bloom, head to the Royal Botanic Gardens in the CBD – where you can capture the purple blossoms with Sydney Harbour as a backdrop.
The Adelaide Hills are a jacaranda lover’s heaven. But if you don’t want to venture too far, North Adelaide is the city’s jacaranda epicentre. You’ll find plenty of places to get your colour fix in the inner-city suburbs of Unley, Toorak Gardens, Burnside, Dulwich and Mitcham.
Other hotspots include LeFevre Terrace, Fullarton Rd and Wakefield St in the CBD, where jacarandas line the walkways – creating a picture-perfect shot that takes in the cathedral and many an old building.
So there you have it. With spring well underway, it’s an exciting time for nature lovers. That said, not everyone’s got a spring in their step at this time of year. Queenslanders call the jacaranda the ‘exam tree’ and talk about purple panic – because the onset of blossom is a sure sign it’s exam time for uni students. Our advice is to put all that to the back of your mind and just get out there and enjoy the show.