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TRAVEL & LEISURE

Seven Rewarding Pit Stops to Make When You're Tackling The Tan

Punctuate your exercise routine with tropical plants, scoops of gelato and tranquil places to rest.
By Marnie Vinall
March 18, 2021
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By Marnie Vinall
March 18, 2021
  shares

in partnership with

On any given day, Melbourne's famous Tan Track is busy with walkers, runners, strollers and joggers. And we can see why: the 3.8-kilometre track around the Royal Botanic Gardens is surrounded by lush bush and convenient kiosks. To enhance your next run around The Tan, we've teamed up with Adidas to bring you seven rewarding stops to make along the way, starting at the Rose Pavilion and finishing up at Ornamental Lake.

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Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

ROSE PAVILION

In the heart of the Royal Botanic Gardens, right next to Hopetoun Lawn and west of Ornamental Lake, is the Rose Pavilion. Known for its dreamy pink and white roses surrounding the dome, the Pavilion is a good starting location for warming up. As you limber up your calves and hammies, soak in the tranquil views of the river, enjoy the shade from the rotunda and listen to some tunes to get you in the mood for the jog ahead.

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Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

JARDIN TAN

When you think of Jardin Tan, the first thing that comes to mind is its increasingly popular deluxe picnic hampers. However, you're on the move, so instead take a look at the cafe's takeaway options to keep you well fuelled and in good company on your jog. Our choice is a scoop of house-made gelato or one of its lemon squash or lime and pineapple sodas. While you're stopping by, enjoy the organic gardens and peruse the cafe's farm-to-table menu for a future long lunch.

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David Baron; Flickr

KING'S DOMAIN GARDENS

There's a lot to see on a stop off at King's Domain Gardens, found alongside the Royal Botanic Gardens, Queen Victoria Gardens and Alexandra Gardens. The expansive parklands offers an abundance of scenery and views. There's La Trobe's Cottage, The Grotto, Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Government House and the Shrine of Remembrance. You'll also get a little history lesson with the various monuments and statues along the way, including the Kings Domain Resting Place, a memorial marking the repatriation of the remains of 38 Indigenous Australians.

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Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

TROPICAL GLASSHOUSE

Make your next goal the Tropical Glasshouse and feast your eyes on the various plants from tropical regions across the globe. You'll find some interesting and striking international flowers, such as the titan arum — the largest unbranched flower head in the world, native to Indonesia. Or, spy the lovely perfumed tiger-spotted stanhopea, a striking orchid native to Mexico. The Glasshouse has a humidity of 70 percent or higher, so make sure you take time for a water break, too.

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Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

GUILFOYLE'S VOLCANO

Catch your breath while you soak in the lush sights at Guilfoyle's Volcano (also a great spot for a mid-run photo, if you're into that kind of thing). The pool of water was originally built in 1876 to store water for the Botanic Gardens. Today, after undergoing restoration and landscape development, the picturesque water reservoir has a timber boardwalk with multiple viewing platforms. While you're there, get a good look at the various water plants, succulents and floating islands. You'll also spy stunning views of the city. While running The Tan, look out for access to the boardwalk via Gate C on Anderson Street or Gate D on Birdwood Avenue.

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THE TERRACE CAFE

When you're feeling peckish, point your toes towards The Terrace Cafe. The takeaway kiosk serves muffins and scones, chicken wraps and quinoa salads — so there's heaps to choose from for either a quick bite or as the ultimate reward for your efforts. And, of course, it serves excellent cups of coffee too. The kiosk is open daily from 9.30am–3.30pm. Alternatively, if you're escaping bad weather or want to spot for longer, the cafe serves more substantial feeds, like vegetarian omelettes, eggs bennies and chicken burgers.

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Visit Victoria

ORNAMENTAL LAKE

You made it! As your final stop, Ornamental Lake provides the perfect oasis to cool down. Walk around the circumference, or find a spot to sit and relax on the lawn by the water. The peaceful spot is home to an abundance of flora and fauna, including vibrant flowers and over 50 species of native birds. While you walk off the lactic acid build up in your muscles, try to spot one of the black swans or maybe even a cygnet.

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In need of a new pair of runners? Take a look at the new Adidas Ultraboost 21 runners here.

Top image: Visit Victoria

Published on March 18, 2021 by Marnie Vinall

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