Bowral Travel Guide: 46 reviews and 213 photos


The name Bowral was derived from Bowrel, which was the Aboriginal name given to the area. Bowrel is thought to have meant "large" or "high", referring to Mt Gibraltar, the nearby Mountain which has quite a few excellent lookouts.

Once the railway line had been completed, Bowral soon became a summer holiday retreat for many wealthy Sydney residents. These Sydneysiders had come to the area to not only get away from Sydney, but due the Southern Highlands' cooler climate, to escape the often scorching and humid Sydney summers.

Left behind are magnificent mansions and spacious gardens containing many European deciduous and evergreen trees, exotic plants and flowering annuals.

This area is a "gardeners delight," my only wish is that more of the private homes would open up their gardens for the public to view.

With the Southern Highlands having very distinct seasons, the best time to visit Bowral would be during either autumn or spring.

During autumn, the trees explode with bright reds and oranges, and the air is crisp, nice to sit around the wood fire in the evenings.

Spring, and the area is in full bloom with springtime annuals such as the popular tulip, and many of the local gardens become open to the Public, including one of the most esteemed gardens in the world, the famous Milton Park.
This area is beautiful in Spring, and this year (2009) I had the chance to visit many of the open gardens in the area.

Bowral is also of interest to Cricketing fans who would remember it for where Sir Donald Bradman lived as a child for a short time.
The Bradman Museum of Cricket is located next to Bradman oval.

Located in the pretty Southern Highlands, 126kms from Sydney, Bowral and the surrounding towns are worth a visit or a longer stay.

On these pages, I have included the nearby towns of .........
........as they are all in close proximity to Bowral.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Beautiful Mansions and gardens
  • In a nutshell:I love this pretty area and the changes of the seasons
  • Last visit to Bowral: Oct 2009
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (21)

Comments (11)

  • blueskyjohn's Profile Photo
    Mar 13, 2015 at 5:48 AM

    Love the gardens here. Thanks for the tour!

    • balhannah's Profile Photo
      Mar 13, 2015 at 9:57 PM

      Thanks for visiting! The area is beautiful and the gardens are like you find in Europe.

  • greekcypriot's Profile Photo
    Oct 1, 2010 at 11:05 PM

    Hi Dee, very beautiful photos, and nice guide.

  • Maryimelda's Profile Photo
    Jun 30, 2010 at 11:56 PM

    What magnificent flowers, Dee. I would love to see that Gift Shop church in Berrima. It's an area I have yet to explore.

  • scottishvisitor's Profile Photo
    Mar 18, 2010 at 3:28 PM

    Gardens are a favourite thing for me but tulips in our Autumn would be a strange thing!

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    Mar 9, 2010 at 2:40 PM

    Dee, your photographs are breathtakingly beautiful [especially since I live so far north in Illinois and am tired of snow!]. As I love gardens, I found this page quite interesting and informative. Thanks!

  • Durfun's Profile Photo
    Mar 8, 2010 at 2:16 PM

    Beautiful setting for tourist info!

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Dec 20, 2009 at 10:23 AM

    YOU all have such wonderful color this time of the year, and the gardens beyond comparison. I was reading about the cane toads and fruit bats taking over in the north and coming your way? Don't you wish you lived in this place for the beauty?

  • ViajesdelMundo's Profile Photo
    Dec 4, 2009 at 7:07 PM

    Wow, so many lovely gardens in these area!! and good job of documenting them!

  • craic's Profile Photo
    Dec 20, 2008 at 11:03 AM

    tulip time is lovely - we had friends who lived in Mary McKillop's house

  • rexvaughan's Profile Photo
    Nov 5, 2008 at 7:43 AM

    Some really splendid gardens here. Nice photos. I had to shift my mind to tulips in Sept. Is that upside down? ;-))


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