Anyone in Australia would have heard of the Canberra Flower Show that happens every year. The Canberra Flower Show called the Floriade is one of the most amazing things to see and do in Australia during the Spring season.
Thanks to the internet, we all have at least once seen the pictures of tulips in The Netherlands. They are some of the most prettiest pictures on social media. Even though I did not see the tulips when I was in The Netherlands, I did visit a festival that is hosted every year in our own Australian capital city of Canberra, that is called the Floriade.
A few years ago, I visited Canberra just to see these amazing flowers and also to pat a cheetah at the Canberra National Zoo and Aquarium. By the way did you know that Canberra was the first city where I lived in after migrating to Australia?
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About Canberra Flower Show called Floriade
Also called as Australia’s Celebration of Spring, Floriade is a flower festival celebrated in Canberra, the capital city of Australia. It is a celebration of the Spring season and the festival is held every year displaying the delightful flowers with some sculptures. The festival is usually held between mid of September and mid of October.
The idea of Floriade was started by a landscape architect named Christiaan Slotemaker de Bruine. The design was commenced in the year 1986 based on the Keukenhof garden in The Netherlands. For Canberra’s 75th birthday, Floriade was started in the year 1988. It was initially started as a one off event but due to the popularity of the event, it was decided to be hosted every year.
Floriade is originated from Latin word floriat, which means to design with flowers. The festival is known as “Australia’s Celebration of Spring” by the locals.
The Floriade flower festival is the third largest flower festival in the Southern Hemisphere and it attracts more than 300,000 visitors every year.
How to reach the Canberra Flower Festival?
The Floriade is conducted in Commonwealth Park in Canberra. There are three ways to get to the Commonwealth Park from Canberra Central Business District (CBD).
- By Air – Canberra has an international airport in Majura. It serves as an airport for the city and its surrounding regional areas. The distance from the airport to the CBD is around 8 kilometres and the journey takes up to 20 minutes. There is a public bus operated by Transport Canberra that travels between CBD and airport. You can purchase the ticket at the vending machine near the bus stop.
- By Road – The drive to Commonwealth Park is just 10 minutes (around 7 kilometres) from the CBD. There are plenty of parking spaces available. You can hire a self driven car at the airport or at CBD. All you need is an International Driver’s licence (valid and in English) and a credit card to hire a car.
- By Public transport – There are multiple buses that run between CBD and Commonwealth Park. Up-to-date information can be found on the Transport Canberra website.
- The public transport in Canberra is not that great and is not that frequent, so ensure to check the bus routes and timings before planning to go by bus.
- By Walk – This is the best way to reach the park as you can avoid all the crowd and traffic rush easily during the festival. The distance by walk between CBD and Commonwealth Park is just 2.5 kilometres, so you can walk up to the park. I walked from the CBD to the park.
If you enjoy hiking and exploring, then do not forget to visit Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve, or Namadgi National Park as they both have amazing hiking trails. There is also Mount Taylor Nature Reserve that is closer to the CBD where you can hike and have a relaxing exercise during the evenings. Here you can see the Kangaroos, Wallabies and Australian native birds in their natural habitat.
Tickets and timings
Visiting Floriade is absolutely FREE. There are no entry tickets required to see the flowers. However, there are musical events and the Night Fest that are conducted during the festival and they require tickets.
The flower viewing at the festival is open between 9 AM and 6 PM during the Floriade festival. Plan your visit in advance and ensure to be there either first thing in the morning or during evening. To avoid crowd, I suggest morning visit.
Accommodation near Floriade, Canberra Flower Show
The best place to stay when you are in Canberra to visit the Floriade is near CBD. As I mentioned above, the CBD is just around 2.5 kilometres from the Canberra Flower Show and you can easily walk to the place. You can consider staying at the below hotels that are really comfortable and great places to stay.
- IBIS Budget Canberra – 3 Star Hotel.
- Crowne Plaza Canberra, an IHG Hotel – 4 Star Hotel.
- Novotel Canberra – 4 Star Hotel.
- Hyatt Hotel Canberra, a Park Hyatt Hotel – 5 Star Hotel.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Floriade
Q: Where does Floriade happen?
Floriade happens in Australia’s capital city of Canberra. The flower show happens at Commonwealth Park situated at Lake Burley Griffin near CBD.
Q: When does Floriade happen?
The flower show happens annually during the Spring season (between September and November).
Q: How long does the Floriade happen?
The flower show usually lasts for a month.
Q: How much does it cost to go to Canberra flower show Floriade?
It is absolutely free to attend Floriade.
Q: What other flower shows or festivals happen in Australia?
Australia has a varied and unique kind of flora and fauna. Apart from Floriade, you can see the Cherry Blossom Festival at Auburn Botanical Gardens in Sydney, Lavender Farm in Tasmania, and the Jacarandas Flower Festival in Sydney and Grafton.
Safety for solo female travelers
Canberra is one of the safest cities in Australia. The capital city does not have much of a crime rate and is very safe for solo female travelers. As I mentioned in the beginning of my post, I lived in Canberra for many months and it was the first city I migrated to from India. And during my stay at this city I never faced any issues. However, be cautious and know your surroundings, especially at nights as Canberra becomes very isolated and deserted at nights.
Yes visiting Floriade is definitely worth it. The festival may not be as big as the one in The Netherlands, but it is a beautiful festival and brings in lot of cheerful vibes to the city during the spring season.
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