Close up photograph of green plant spines with dew drops. banner image

Discovery Garden

Coming soon: late-2022

Our Sensory Garden was destroyed during the 2019/20 bushfires.

We are rebuilding a new "Everyone Can Play Discovery Garden" - thanks to funding from the NSW Government's Everyone Can Play program. This project has received $452,000 in grant funding and $60,000 in contributions.

The new garden will encourage appreciation and connection with the natural world. It will be a place of new experiences, enticing visitors to slow down and interact. Our Discovery Garden will delight, challenge and engage the senses of every visitor, regardless of culture, age or ability.

Photograph of the white Philotheca flower

See

The Discovery Garden will be visually stimulating.

  • Giant insects will both delight and confuse our sense of scale.
  • Colourful mosaics, fascinating sculptures and vibrant plants will entice our eyes to explore.
  • Shadows and light will play and dance through the forest canopy.
A large ball with a mirror surface among green and yellow grasses.

Hear

Sounds in the garden will be both relaxing and engaging.

  • Listen to the intriguing sound of splashing water in a seemingly dry creek bed.
  • Hear the Casuarina trees sigh as the wind whistles through their foliage.
  • Guess the owner of sounds from the soundbar that broadcasts forest noises with the push of a button - is it summer cicadas, cockatoos, or a lyrebird call?
Close cropped photograph of a yellow Banksia flower on a tree branch.

Touch

With a variety of textures, the Discovery Garden will invite feeling experiences.

  • Smooth and rough bark, hard and soft leaves provide tactile contrast all around.
  • Feel the river pebbles underfoot, the soft brush of grasses and the rigid materials of sculptures and landscape treatments.
  • Seasonal changes will welcome hot and cold, wet and dry elements to the space.
Close up photograph of vibrant green gum leaves hanging downward from a thin branch.

Smell

The forest is filled with the perfume of our native flora.

  • Mint bushes and Eucalypts will release fragrant oils.
  • Visitors can encourage unique bush aromas by brushing past foliage or stopping to pick and crush a small leaf.
  • Let different scents interact with your feelings and memories.
  • What delights your sense might be repulsive to someone else. Smells obvious to some can go undetected by others.
Close cropped photograph of pink Lilli Pilli fruit berries.

Taste

With assistance from our experienced guides, you can enjoy the taste of fruits and plants.

  • Visitors can experience the flavours known for thousands of years by Aboriginal people of the region.
  • Discover Australian plants that produce edible fruits, nuts, seeds, leaves and tubers.