British Columbia is full of amazing outdoor experiences and adventures. From skiing in Whistler to hiking in the ancient forests, there are so many outdoor activities to explore.
If you’re looking for something a bit more relaxing yet still stunningly beautiful, consider visiting the Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island. The Butchart Gardens, located a half-hour drive from Victoria has 55 acres of gardens, 900 plant varieties, and 26 greenhouses to explore. The gardens, grown on a former quarry, have been designed and cultivated for over 100 years, transforming the space into a beautiful year-round garden haven. These beautiful gardens in British Columbia are also a National Historic Site.
Several gardens make up this magnificent display including the Sunken Garden, Rose Garden, Japanese Garden, Italian Garden, and Mediterranean Garden. The Sunken Garden is arguably the most magnificent sight. Upon entering, you are greeted with a green-cloaked quarry filled with colourful flowers, shrubs, and trees. On 5 acres of land, there are over 151 flower beds with 65,000 bulbs planted for the spring. There is a walking path that winds through the garden so that you can be immersed in the blooms and a lookout point so that you can observe all the beauty of the sunken garden below.
Photo by TravellingOtter
Prior to Covid-19 (but hopefully returning soon), the gardens hosted many events including summer concerts, firework displays and light shows. During the winter months, there are Christmas light displays and greenhouse tours offering a brief reprieve from the cold.
Plan to spend a half to a full day at the gardens to be able to take in the full beauty of the site. Next day readmission is at a discounted price if you’d like to split your visit over two days. Seasons passes are also available. Current operating hours are 9 am to 5 pm daily with the last admission at 4 pm. Peak season is July and August, and paths can be congested between 11 am to 3 pm (pre-Covid-19).
The gardens are currently open and follow all rules of the Provincial Health Office and the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control. At this time, tickets can only be purchased on site.
Photo by Fyre Mael
Planning to spend a few days on Vancouver Island? Check out the Maritime Museum and Haslam Creek Suspension Bridge in Ladysmith BC