Situated in amongst the wineries that the area is renown for the Hunter Valley Gardens cover an area of 60 acres and has over eight kilometres of walking tracks with delights around every corner. It is wheelchair friendly with only the odd path not accessible.
Another equally as scenic route was soon found. There are ten themed gardens in all starting with the oriental garden (above). Others include the sunken garden, the rose garden, the formal garden, the border garden, the Indian mosaic garden, the lakes walk, the Chinese moongate garden and the Italian Grotto.
One of my favourites though was the storybook garden. Here tales from my childhood came alive as we visited the ginger bread house, rolled down the hill with Jack and Jill, saw the cow that jumped over the moon and of course the mad hatters tea party.
These gardens are the largest gardens in the southern hemisphere and are privately owned by Bill and Imelda Roche. Their collectibles are scattered throughout the garden. The rose garden has thirteen bronze statues of Imelda and her twelve grandchildren.
And as a tribute to the Brokenback ranges at which it sits in the foothills the Brokenback brumbies roam.
We spent a lovely day and stayed overnight in a winery motel. It was an absolutely superb day and I could easily have spent much longer, taking my time, sitting under the magic mushrooms like Ferdinand, just smelling the flowers.