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Cockington Green Gardens

Updated on May 7, 2013

Cockington Green Gardens Miniature Village, Canberra

Cockington Green Gardens are situated in Canberra, the capital city of Australia. It is a 5 acre garden filled with miniature buildings from around the world. The first thing that greets you as you enter the gardens is a miniature of the house you just walked through (see the picture on the left).

It has two main sections - the Great Britain section and the international section.

The Great Britain section was first opened to the public in 1979 and contains delightful model buildings inspired by architecture around Great Britain - ranging from Stone Henge to quaint thatched cottages to an imposing stone castle. All these models have been made in a 1/12 scale.

In 1997 work began on the international section with buildings such as the Triumphal Arch (Syria), the Chateau of Bojnice (Slovakia), Masada (Israel), and Torogan Marano (Philippines). These models range from 1/12 scale to 1/100 scale.

All photos on this page are copyright GonnaFly.

The Model Buildings

Cockington Green model buildings
Cockington Green model buildings

The older model buildings were made from fibrous cement sheeting but newer models and repairs are made from flexible resins. See pictures of the construction process.

All the models in the Great Britain section have been made in a 1/12 scale. The models in the international section range from 1/12 scale to 1/100 scale.

See a map / worksheet of the layout of the two sections.

When we visited in winter 2012, the Jabrin Fort mentioned in the above video had been installed. See a picture.

Models in the British Section

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Cockington VillageBraemar castle ScotlandCornish cottagesHouse in the CloudsLavenhamOast housePeriod house, SussexStone Henge
Cockington Village
Cockington Village
Braemar castle Scotland
Braemar castle Scotland
Cornish cottages
Cornish cottages
House in the Clouds
House in the Clouds
Oast house
Oast house
Period house, Sussex
Period house, Sussex
Stone Henge
Stone Henge
Borgund stave church, Norway
Borgund stave church, Norway

The International Section

Several of the embassies and high commissions around Canberra have contributed (suggestions about which building and also financially) to making the international buildings in this section. The average cost for constructing one of these buildings is about $30,000 but some cost over $100,000 and take more than 1,000 hours to build - probably not something to build in your own back yard!

The building on the right is a replica of the Borgund stave church in Norway.

pictures of some of the buildings in the international section

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Borobudur Temple, IndonesiaJabrin Fort, OmanMachu Picchu, PeruMasada, IsraelSt Andrij church, UkraineThe Treasury Petra, JordanTriumphal Arch Palmyra, SyriaTorogan Maranao, Philippines
Borobudur Temple, Indonesia
Borobudur Temple, Indonesia
Jabrin Fort, Oman
Jabrin Fort, Oman
Machu Picchu, Peru
Machu Picchu, Peru
Masada, Israel
Masada, Israel
St Andrij church, Ukraine
St Andrij church, Ukraine
The Treasury Petra, Jordan
The Treasury Petra, Jordan
Triumphal Arch Palmyra, Syria
Triumphal Arch Palmyra, Syria
Torogan Maranao, Philippines
Torogan Maranao, Philippines

Make your own model building

Cut & Assemble  Victorian Cottage: An Easy-to-Make Paper Model (Cut & Assemble Buildings in H-O Scale)
Cut & Assemble Victorian Cottage: An Easy-to-Make Paper Model (Cut & Assemble Buildings in H-O Scale)

Create your own model buildings at a fraction of the cost of the models at Cockington Green. You will make your own model Victorian seaside cottage (7" x 7 1/2" x 8 1/2") from card.

rock climbing rescue
rock climbing rescue

The Figures

Most of the little people and animals which can be seen around Cockington Green have been hand-made from clay. They generally need repainting every year or so.There are about 1,500 miniature characters on display, and 1,000 of those are cheering from the stands in the football stadium.

If you pay close attention to what is going on in the village as you walk around, you will see some most entertaining scenes and also some most amazing creatures. There are farm animals, birds in the trees, people playing sport, criminals being caught and people going about their everyday business.

And I'm sure I saw the Loch Ness monster somewhere...

The Gardens

the plant nursery
the plant nursery

There are hundreds of different plant species used in the gardens. See a list of some of the plants used.

Many visitors think that the gardens consist of bonsai plants. They are however just miniature, dwarf or slow growing plants, many of which have been growing in their location for 15 years or more. There is a nursery section in the garden, and any plant which grows too big will be replaced by another plant in winter. Each year, some 15,000 annuals are planted in the garden beds. The lawns in the gardens are immaculate. Most of the lawns in Cockington Green are real lawns.

There is a turf maze which can be viewed from a platform. You have to find your way (visually) around the maze (300 metres), starting at the top of the maze and finishing at the point in the centre. I think it's hard enough to try to do tracing it with a mouse on the computer screen! Try it yourself. Start at the white cross and follow the turf path until you get to the red cross.

turf maze at Cockington Green Gardens
turf maze at Cockington Green Gardens

More model villages and railways around the world

Have you ever been to Cockington Green Gardens in Canberra? - or an attraction like it?

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    • profile image

      Jackelin 2 years ago

      Hi Kylie,We went to the National Museum of Dinosaurs at the beginning of this year and my son, who is four, still talks about it and asks if we can go again. They acatully enjoyed this Museum more than the Dinosaur exhibitions at the Melbourne and Sydney Museums. Reading about your holidays is making me look forward to our next family holiday.

    • Jogalog profile image

      Jogalog 4 years ago

      It looks really interesting and also educational. I love the fact that it doesn't just have the really big name famous places but has places I've never heard of like the Chateau of Bojnice. I'd find it fascinating to visit. Unfortunately Canberra is just too far away!

    • profile image

      stephanie-barag 4 years ago

      This is an absoluely amazing post!

    • profile image

      Acechelyn 4 years ago

      Wow, I Ioved the different kinds and the architectural design of the buildings. I also love the garden. I wish I could do some kind of this stuff also in the future :).

      Great lens!!

    • profile image

      ivanjones 4 years ago

      it is very nice

    • EliasZanetti LM profile image

      EliasZanetti LM 4 years ago

      Wonderfull lens and great pictures! I really enjoyed it :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Great lens. I like it. Good work :)

    • Arod17 profile image

      Arod17 4 years ago

      Great Article

    • imagelist lm profile image

      imagelist lm 4 years ago

      Wooowwww...great lens...

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Really like these models.

    • profile image

      ajmac 4 years ago

      I would love to visit some day.Thanks for sharing.

    • chocochipchip profile image

      chocochipchip 4 years ago

      I've seen it before!! But never had a chance to go!

    • brownee lm profile image

      brownee lm 4 years ago

      I've never been, but it looks so cool! Thank you for sharing these amazing minis!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I never knew this existed. I just love the scenes with the 'little' people and animals. What fun it must be to have this job creating those little people or working in the nursery. Thanks for this.

    • kdmarshall lm profile image

      kdmarshall lm 4 years ago

      No. Looks like a mini-adventure.

    • bobtopsoil lm profile image

      bobtopsoil lm 4 years ago

      No, but I wish I had. Gorgeous scenery, brings natures beauty to a head. Thank you.

    • SheGetsCreative profile image

      Angela F 4 years ago from Seattle, WA

      Sounds like a fun place to spend the afternoon.

    • claremckenzie lm profile image

      claremckenzie lm 4 years ago

      I love Cockington Green, I used to have a 'seasons pass' to it when my kids were little (now they are all at uni!) as it was a great place to take a picnic and they loved going there - there is always something to notice that you didn't see the last time. Nice lens, thank you for a little trip down memory lane :)

    • SheilaMilne profile image

      SheilaMilne 4 years ago from Kent, UK

      I haven't been to this one, no, but I've been to Madurodam in the Netherlands. I love miniature villages/towns. So interesting.

    • gregmansour profile image

      gregmansour 4 years ago

      nice lens, i like it

    • profile image

      AlleyCatLane 4 years ago

      This is fascinating! I was not aware of this place, but it is definitely going on my bucket list of places to see.

    • Kathy Eickenberg profile image

      Kathy Eickenberg 4 years ago

      Never been there but would love to visit it.

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 4 years ago

      I have decided to pin it.

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 4 years ago

      No, I have not, but it looks GREAT! What fun. I've added it to my places to see in the world. What a wonderful idea for a photo lens. Congrats on your purple star.

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 4 years ago

      No I didn't. Very interesting lens.

    • profile image

      MensAffairscom 4 years ago

      Love your models, thank you for sharing

    • EsotericAllusion profile image

      EsotericAllusion 4 years ago

      I completely forgot about this place! I went there when I was a school kid years ago and somehow it slipped my mind. Next time I go to Canberra, I am going back there for sure.

    • profile image

      MBCOnline 4 years ago

      We had never heard of Cockington Green Gardens before! Thank you for sharing this!

    • fifta profile image

      fifta 4 years ago

      Love the photos. They are really awesome.

    • profile image

      Bartukas 4 years ago

      such a wonderful experience! thanks for sharing

    • Fridayonmymind LM profile image

      Fridayonmymind LM 4 years ago

      No I haven't but it must take a lot of dedicaton to look after a place like this. Great tlens.

    • thingz1 profile image

      thingz1 4 years ago

      I've never seen anything like this. Very impressive.

    • makorip lm profile image

      makorip lm 4 years ago

      New to me but so well thought out. Good lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Wow...this is a fantastic place. I had never herad of it before but it seems to be a beautiful, artistic, and peaceful place.

    • Tim Bader profile image

      Tim Bader 4 years ago from Surrey, UK

      We went to a similar place here in the UK. Great place for adults as well as kids!

    • profile image

      jiggimodi 4 years ago

      be close to nature it will be good for you

    • robertzimmerman2 profile image

      Robert Zimmerman 4 years ago from SE Florida, USA

      I think I was in a kid sized place in Ontario Canada when I was a teen but I was too big even for that! Interesting article, thanks!

    • profile image

      crstnblue 4 years ago

      No, but it may be such a wonderful experience! : )

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I like to walk that maze. What a beautiful garden.

    • alina nicoleta92 profile image

      alina nicoleta92 4 years ago

      Never been there but it's worth going there:)

    • Allison Whitehead profile image

      Allison Whitehead 4 years ago

      Amazing lens. I love miniature gardens like these!

    • missmary1960 profile image

      missmary1960 4 years ago

      No, but it looks like I would love to go!

    • retta719 profile image

      Loretta 4 years ago from United States

      I've never heard of this place before. The models are so tiny, but so realistic looking. Looks like a fun trip :)

    • profile image

      SteveKaye 4 years ago

      It took me a while to realize that these were models instead of real buildings. Wow.

    • Amyrandall profile image

      Amyrandall 4 years ago

      amazing! Love the one "a replica of the Borgund stave church in Norway." most!

    • Elyn MacInnis profile image

      Elyn MacInnis 4 years ago from Shanghai, China

      It looks like a lot of fun. Those models are amazing. I am afraid my fingers are a little dumb for putting one together, but I like to think about it!

    • absolutelycreat profile image

      absolutelycreat 4 years ago

      Very interesting place. Like to visit . Thanks for sharing.

    • Laurabpeterson profile image

      Laurabpeterson 4 years ago

      I had never heard of it before, sounds like such a fun place! I love the mini characters and the scenes! So fun. Definitely on my list should I ever visit Australia (which I want to do)!

    • profile image

      dinhnam86 4 years ago

      wow loved

    • RawBill1 profile image

      Bill 4 years ago from Gold Coast, Australia

      Wow! I am so amazed to see a Lens on this place! Especially on the Squidoo Home Page! Well done! I have been to Cockington Green twice. Once as a child in the 80's and then again only a few years ago with my own children. I always remembered the place and knew that I had t take my own kids there to see it. They loved it as much as I did I think.

    • MusicMadness LM profile image

      MusicMadness LM 4 years ago

      What an awesome place to visit. Such detail. I had to smile at what the little characters were up to.

    • Ana Dilber profile image

      Ana Dilber 4 years ago

      I just love these gardens and nature. Such a great and green photos.

    • InfoCoop profile image

      InfoCoop 4 years ago

      How wonderful! I saw a mini village like this on an episode of Midsomer Murders recently. Had no idea such a thing existed until then. Fabulous photos!

    • katiecolette profile image

      katiecolette 4 years ago

      I have never been to Australia, but would love to go one day. Cockington Green Gardens look like a fun place to visit.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I have not there but this looks amazing!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      That something outstanding.

    • profile image

      woodppcnseo 4 years ago

      Great to see it as we are in Thailand we also has the one call Minisiam (kind of a miniature cities) But here is good to see as well.

    • profile image

      MarcellaCarlton 4 years ago

      No, but I'd love to see this. As a long time gardener I need to see those miniature plants. This is so fascinating!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Gorgeous! What a beautiful lens, thank you for sharing :)

    • hotsquid profile image

      hotsquid 4 years ago

      No, maybe someday in the future...Great lens!

    • PinkstonePictures profile image

      PinkstonePictures 4 years ago from Miami Beach, FL


    • profile image

      oceanth 4 years ago

      wow loved them!

    • profile image

      miaponzo 4 years ago

      This is FANTASTIC!!!!! I wish I lived near it so I could see it in person!!!!

    • rattie lm profile image

      rattie lm 4 years ago

      Many, many times. I live in Canberra as I guess you do too!

    • Anthony Altorenna profile image

      Anthony Altorenna 4 years ago from Connecticut

      What an amazing garden! I really enjoy modeling and gardening, and the Cockington Green Gardens combine both hobbies into an incredible display.

    • lewisgirl profile image

      lewisgirl 4 years ago

      No, it sounds wonderful, maybe in the future.

    • CrazyHomemaker profile image

      CrazyHomemaker 4 years ago

      This is really cool! Thanks for showing it to us.

    • maryseena profile image

      maryseena 4 years ago

      No, but it looks wonderful Thanks for sharing the pictures.

    • LiteraryMind profile image

      Ellen Gregory 4 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      How creative of someone to think of creating this. Beautiful photographs. Thank you for showing us all this unique and beautiful display.