Originally known as Burial Hill, these gardens were the site of Melbourne's first cemetery, where eight of the city’s early settlers were buried. If that doesn't deter you, grab a picnic from the Queen Victoria Market and pull up a patch of grass beside workers on their lunch break. There are BBQ facilities, tennis courts, a rose garden and trees more than 100 years old. There are plenty of possums about, but don't feed them.
The hill once provided one of the best views out to the bay, so a signalling station was set up here: when a ship was sighted arriving from Britain, a flag was raised on the staff to notify the settlers. The Wurundjeri people also found it significant for the same useful vista, which stretches as far as Mt Macedon.