One of the prestigious, leafy suburbs of Sydney’s upper North Shore, St Ives is about 20km from the CBD.
A place of pony clubs and polo shirts where in autumn the fallen leaves from an array of exotic trees lay a golden carpet over pavements and driveways, St Ives borders the southern reaches of the vast Ku-ring-gai National Park and its attendant waterways which meander north to link up with Broken Bay.
The long artery of Mona Vale Road dissects St Ives and the park as it winds its way toward those famous northern beaches, such as Mona Vale, Newport, Narrabeen, Whale and Palm.
The Wildflower Garden at St Ives has several walking trails through the natural Hawkesbury sandstone bushland, and at various times throughout the year there are guided walks. Around the Information Centre, native species from other parts of Australia have been planted, providing a stark contract to the natural vegetation. The garden is open daily from 7am to 4pm, except on Good Friday, Christmas Day and days of total fire bans. Picnic facilities are available, and there are some good paths suitable for wheelchairs and strollers.