The Parnell Rose Garden is really close to Auckland CBD. To get to the Rose Garden it takes around 10 minutes to walk from Britomart. It is also known as Dove-Myer Robinson Park, this name came from the popular and longest serving mayor in Auckland, he was Mayor for 18 years from 1959 to 1980!
The other day, I decided to walk to the Parnell Rose Garden because I'd heard that there are over 5000 rose bushes there!
The Garden is at the top of a small hill. So when I was standing there, I could see the Skytower and a great view over the city, and Rangitoto Island. In the park itself there are lots of roses with different colors, like pink, red, yellow, white, even purple. I also found some small gardens there with a fountain. I saw some birds enjoying the fountain (it looked like they were showering!), it was a really nice peaceful moment and I forgot how close I was to the city centre!
Every November, there is a Parnell Festival of roses. It's a free weekend event which includes talks by gardening experts, rose pruning demonstrations and some live music. Unfortunately I've just missed it this year (gutted) but I would have loved to have been listening to some jazz in such beautiful surroundings.
If you walk through the Parnell Roase Garden, there is a small bay just in the corner. It is called Judges Bay and although it's small it's really nice, it's the only remaining inside bay in Auckland. During the summer time, I've heard it's a good place for swimming. I saw some kids were swimming there on the day I went but I wasn't really brave enough to venture into the water that day.
Just behind Judges Bay is the Martyn Fields Reserve, definitely a good place for a picnic and to occasionally wander down to the beach for a swim! When I was sitting on the small hill I could see Rangitito Island which is always a cool view. If you don't fancy swimming in the water at Judges Bay then a short walk away are the Parnell Baths. This is a 60 meter outdoor pool and has family and adults spa pool, a heated lido pool and there is also an 'interactive aqua playground'.
The Parnell Rose Gardens, Martyn Fields Reserve, Judges Bay and Parnell Baths are really close together, and so close to Auckland city centre, definitely a great place to spend the day!