Initiated in 1870, Queens Gardens is the oldest Botanic Garden in Townsville and is heritage listed. Now covering 4 hectares, reduced from an original 40Ha, it is considered a fine example of a tropical colonial garden of that era. Originally established as a trial acclimatisation garden for European settlement, in which potential food and economic plants were trialled during the era of colonisation.
Today the gardens are a lush green oasis set against the dramatic pink granite cliffs of Castle Hill, and offer a quiet cool retreat from the nearby city centre. The emphasis of the current plant collection is on colonial ornamental plants with colourful, attractive flowers, foliage or fruit.
Townsville residents use its luxuriant gardens for leisure and recreation, while the City Council and community groups utilise its green splendour to stage a variety of special events.