Toowoomba – home to many gorgeous gardens. It’s easy to see why this bright township is such a hit with flora-loving tourists and those seeking a weekend getaway to recharge.

The Garden City in Southern Queensland is less than a two hour drive from Brisbane, so why not rent a car from any of our Thrifty car hire locations and enjoy a weekend of nature and nurture?

We’ve put together a list of the best things to do in Toowoomba if your goal is to stroll, unwind and just take it all in.

Queens Park and Botanic Gardens

Just a short stroll from the CBD lie Australia’s must-see botanic gardens. 25 hectares of picturesque floral beds, combined with carefully tended tree lined pathways. Queens Park offers a flawless and restful harmony that immediately sets visitors at ease, providing the ultimate sense of relaxation.

The State Heritage listed park and botanic gardens transform into a magical Christmas wonderland every year in December, during the annual Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers. If you fancy fresh produce, you don’t want to miss the garden’s signature Flower, Food and Wine Festival (a must – add to the 2019 calendar!) This festival is packed full of the region’s finest wine, flavours, and produce- straight from the pasture!

Japanese Gardens – Ju Raku En

The largest traditionally designed Japanese Gardens in Australia is a joint project of the University of Southern Queensland and the Toowoomba Regional Council. The 4.5 hectare garden features a mountain stream and waterfall, dry garden, central lake and 230 species of Japanese and Australian native plants.

Ju Raku En means, ‘long life and happiness in a public garden’, and that is certainly the vibe here.  The garden is famous for replicating many of Japan’s old gardens, and offering a tranquil setting – perfect for enjoying a meditative stroll.

Picnic Point

As the name implies, this is one idyllic spot for a picnic. Perched high and overlooking the stunning Lockyer Valley in the Great Dividing Range, this makes for a must-see stop when exploring what Toowoomba has to offer. It’s a short drive from the main township where there’s a Thrifty car hire located, should you need a ride.

There are many play areas and picnic facilities as well as walks to explore the surroundings. Don’t miss the manicured gardens of Picnic Point Square, which is also known as Flagpole Island.

Newtown Park

Originally laid out to resemble the Union Jack, Newtown Park is an array of crossing trees and brilliant foliage. It’s also the location of the State Rose Garden where more than 1500 rose bushes are laid in various varieties.

The roses peak in late Autumn and can be enjoyed from anywhere within the park, thanks to the complementing park furniture. For a bit of weekend fun, check out the croquet lawns and tap into your inner Alice in Wonderland!

Ravensbourne National Park

For those who have a few days to explore the surrounds of Toowoomba, book your hire car and take a short road trip to Ravensbourne National Park. Home to towering red cedars and a lush rainforest, the park is full of short walks and spectacular vistas from Gus Beutel’s Lookout. The trickling streams, the sound of birdlife and the transcendent trees make for an incredibly serene visit – enjoy the crisp, fresh air and breathe deeply.

Why not enjoy a relaxing weekend getaway in one of Australia’s most floral-friendly destinations? Let Thrifty get you there in one of our luxury class vehicles, for ultimate comfort and style.