Australia Northern Territory Photography Travel

Early Mornings In Darwin’s Botanic Gardens

Darwin's Botanic Gardens

This time of year in the tropics it pays to get up really early in the morning. If you’re up with the dawn you might just miss that sweaty, impossible feeling that rises with the sun. Certainly, it makes any kind of exercise more enjoyable.

That’s how I ended up at the Darwin’s Botanic Gardens as the sun was rising on a quiet weekday morning. Myself, my mum and one of my nephews, we felt all along among the trees, exploring the shady interiors as the sun peaked out from behind the horizon.

I’ve always liked the gardens. My parents were married in there way back when, and it’s always been somewhere I’ve enjoyed going to relax, or to photograph people. The mix of the enormous trees and tropical flora makes for an interesting backdrop, and the light rays in the canopy are enough to make me swoon. Dean and I have even gone geocaching there before, but with limited success.

Darwin's Botanic Gardens

We wandered for a while, trying to avoid the dewey spider webs and making the most of the silence. There’s a great little cafe now in Darwin’s Botanic Gardens, not new by any means but I’ve never managed to make it there before. It’s just in the exact perfect spot, pretty much what’s been missing from my little patch of paradise for way too long. It’s called Eva’s, and it’s a wonderful breakfast spot when you’re wandering early in the morning. Their banana bread and cacao nibs… Well, I certainly didn’t leave any behind!

Darwin's Botanic Gardens

After brekkie was well and truly down the hatch, along with some amazing iced coffees, we started to make our way back. Threading up the Botanic hill, we made an obligatory stop at the three-story playground that is every child’s dream.

Darwin's Botanic Gardens

I even managed to coach the nephew into capturing a photo of my mum and I together, although to be honest he was happier making us look like ‘floating heads’ by cropping at the neck and laughing maniacally. Should I be worried? People are always saying I look like my mum, but I have to admit I really don’t see it… What do you think?

Darwin's Botanic Gardens

A great morning, a delicious breakfast and Darwin’s botanic gardens all to ourselves. What else could you possibly ask for?

This post originally appeared on, the pre-evolved version of Maps And Mandalas. I’ve republished it here with its original date because I love it that much.

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