Australia’s largest city offers plenty of incredible architecture and attractions. However, those who like to retreat from the urban environment will find an abundance of green spaces. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful place to wander through on your way to brunch or somewhere to sit after doing a spot of shopping in the CBD, there are lots of options.
Here are four parks within walking distance of The Macleay Hotel in Potts Point that will give you that moment of tranquility you’re looking for.
1. Arthur McElhone Reserve
Situated just four minutes’ walk away from The Macleay Hotel in Elizabeth Bay is the lovely Arthur McElhone Reserve. With its panoramic views of Sydney Harbour, this is a popular spot for wedding photographs. It’s small and secluded, so you won’t get the same crowds that you find in the CBD.
For peace and quiet close to your apartment, this is definitely the place to go! If you like exploring Sydney’s historic past, right behind the reserve is Elizabeth Bay House. It’s a stunning heritage building that was commissioned in the 19th century by New South Wales colonial secretary Alexander Macleay.
2. Rushcutters Bay Park
Rushcutters Bay Park has something for everyone. Only fifteen minutes’ away from Potts Point, you’ll find sweeping grassy areas with incredible harbour views. Get those endorphins going during a morning yoga session and then join the locals for a game of cricket or rugby.
There’s a small kiosk where you can grab a coffee or something to snack on. Alternatively, pack your own picnic basket and enjoy a budget day out in the sunshine.
3. Royal Botanic Gardens
The Royal Botanic Gardens, just a 15-20 minute stroll from Potts Point, is a colourful sanctuary right by the harbour. You can take a free guided walk of the grounds, or enjoy it on your own. Make sure you allow plenty of time though, as there’s a lot to see here!
Wander through a jungle of tropical plants in the greenhouse, keep an eye out for White Ibises and Dusky Moorhens at the Lotus Pond and marvel at the ancient Wollemi Pine, a tree that dates to the dinosaur era.
4. Hyde Park
Located a 25 minute walk away from Potts Point in the middle of the Sydney CBD, this expansive area offers a haven for those looking to get off the busy streets for a while. There’s often something going on, such as Sydney’s annual Night Noodle Markets and Sydney Festival activities.
Even when there aren’t any special events on, Hyde Park is an ideal place to stroll through on your way to or from the CBD. During the day, you can join loved-up couples, picnicking families and business people on their lunch breaks. As night begins to fall, particularly on weekends, you’ll be joined by enthusiastic revellers heading for the bars and nightclubs on Oxford Street.
There are also a few attractions scattered around the park grounds, including a memorial to the ANZACS (the Australian and New Zealand forces who fought at the Battle of Gallipoli in 1915), a statue of explorer Captain Cook and the Archibald Fountain commemorating the association of Australia and France during WWI.
Whether you’re looking to rest your feet for five minutes or enjoy an entire day out in tranquil surroundings, these parks have what you’re after. Book a room at The Macleay Hotel and use your base to explore Sydney’s green spaces.