The Most Beautiful Botanical Garden in Every Province
Join our (virtual!) garden tour of brilliant blossoms and lush landscaping.
10 Must-See Botanical Gardens Across Canada
When spring is in the air, there’s no better way to refresh your senses than by surrounding yourself with stunning flowers, shrubs and trees. These beautiful botanical gardens across Canada—one from each province—are the perfect place to immerse yourself in nature, and wonder at the miracle of the season’s new growth.
The Butchart Gardens
Victoria, British Columbia
It’s easy see why The Butchart Gardens attracts a million visitors every year. For more than a century, Canadians have flocked to view its outstanding floral displays, one of the premier attractions on Vancouver Island. Though open year-round, this National Historic Site really comes alive each spring when hundreds of thousands of bulbs begin to blossom on its bedding plants and flowering trees. With over 55 acres to explore, and a dining room that serves a decadent afternoon tea, it’s easy to while away an entire day at Canada’s most famous botanical garden.
Check out more historical landmarks every Canadian needs to visit.
You might not expect to find a traditional Japanese garden smack dab in the middle of the Prairies, but in fact, southern Alberta has a long history of Japanese settlement. Nikka Yuko—which translates as “Japan-Canada friendship”—was built in Lethbridge during Canada’s centennial to express the merging of both cultures in a serene setting, rich in symbolism. Upon entry, guests are greeted by hosts wearing traditional Japanese clothing, who’ll recommend the highlights of the garden, including a teahouse handcrafted in Kyoto, meticulously pruned trees and an abundance of water features.
Discover 10 great day trips from Calgary.
Edwardian Gardens at Government House
An oasis on the Prairies, thousands of pretty perennials, vibrant annuals and majestic trees dot the grounds of Regina’s Government House. Set on 7.5 acres, the Edwardian-style garden features an eye-popping array of tulips, fragrant lilies and a delightful rose display. Should the weather not co-operate, retreat into the Sylvia Fedoruk Conservatory for a botanical boost. Engage the kids with complimentary scavenger hunts catered by age group, so they can learn a thing or two about gardening as they burn off energy.
Here are 10 castles in Canada worth exploring.
Designed by Frederick G. Todd, Canada’s first registered landscape architect, Assiniboine Park—located just minutes from downtown Winnipeg—has a lot going for it, notably its botanical gardens. You’ll feel worlds away from city stressors when wandering the winding paths of the park’s English Garden. Unlike most English gardens, which follow a regimented symmetry, the flowing layout of this one allows for a more casual connection to nature. Botanical beauty can also be found in the Leo Mol Sculpture Gardens, where the bronzed works of this Ukrainian-Canadian master sculptor are set amid flowering trees and water features.
Find out 50 incredible things to do in Winnipeg.
Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens
Niagara Falls, Ontario
Niagara Falls isn’t the only natural wonder you’ll find in this lush pocket of southern Ontario. A 10-minute drive north of the Falls brings you to Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens, 99 acres of meticulously maintained gardens and an impressive outdoor classroom for students at the Niagara Parks School of Horticulture. Themed displays of bedding are changed seasonally, but the big draw is the English estate-styled rose garden, featuring more than 2,400 roses. Visit in May or early June to experience the Centennial Lilac Garden, brimming with 200 fragrant varieties.
Discover more unique things to do in Niagara Falls.
Montréal Botanical Garden
From a tropical rainforest to an alpine meadow to a First Nations garden, all corners of the globe are represented in this living museum of 22,000 plant species. Recognized as one of the world’s most bountiful botanical gardens, Montréal Botanical Garden prides itself on 10 exhibition greenhouses and 20 thematic gardens spread out over 75 hectares, just minutes from downtown Montréal. Need to de-stress? Head to the Courtyard of Senses for a soothing stroll. Hankering to spot a specific species? Be sure to check the calendar of blooms for the latest seasonal sensation.
You’ll want to add these great day trips from Montreal to your itinerary.
St. Andrews, New Brunswick
The seaside town of St. Andrews boasts an intoxicating, colourful escape set upon 27 acres. Technically, Kingsbrae Garden is a horticultural garden and not a botanical one, as it focuses upon the art of plant management through themed displays. But as it is home to more than 50,000 perennials, an Acadian forest and a growing collection of award-winning sculptures, fans of botanical gardens will still get what they’re looking for here. An authentic Dutch windmill, petting zoo and several elaborate playhouses make it an ideal destination for families, too.
Check out 10 more essential experiences on Canada’s east coast.
Halifax Public Gardens
Halifax, Nova Scotia
It’s a wonder more period dramas aren’t filmed at Halifax Public Gardens. This charming garden set in central Halifax continues to enchant visitors and remains largely unchanged since opening in 1867. Once a piece of swampland, the amalgamation of two adjoining gardens has blossomed into a vibrant urban oasis that’s now a designated National Historic Site. An impressive wrought-iron fence surrounds all 17-acres of the landscaped garden, enclosing fountains, statues and flora consistent with the Victorian era. Keep an eye out for the two carpet beds, a Victorian garden tradition of using clipped dwarf plants to spell out words or illustrate pictures for special occasions.
Here are the 10 places in Canada every Canadian needs to visit.
Orwell, Prince Edward Island
Visitors to the eastern wedge of Prince Edward Island will find the province’s most comprehensive botanical garden. With a focus on native plant propagation and ecosystem restoration, the arboretum and botanical gardens at Macphail Woods are a trove of native trees, shrubs, ferns and wildflowers, plus they serve as feeding grounds for monarch butterflies each summer. Look for the lady’s slipper, P.E.I.’s provincial flower, in June and July, and be sure to hit the Streamside Trail, where the Orwell River snakes its way underneath canopies of centuries-old hemlock, birch and maple trees.
Discover the fascinating story of how every provincial flower was chosen.
Memorial University Botanical Garden
St. John’s, Newfoundland
Nestled within a boreal forest, Memorial University Botanical Garden sports seven cultivated gardens, containing both native and exotic plants, attracting 120 species of birds and 26 species of butterflies. (Here’s how to attract more birds and butterflies to your own garden.) Comb through the garden’s 110 acres to discover an extensive rock garden, plus a heritage garden peppered with heirloom plants that have been growing in the province before the Second World War. Perking up students and visitors alike are stunning Himalayan blue poppies and more than 200 rhododendrons that bloom toward the end of June.
If you enjoyed our virtual tour of these botanical gardens, be sure to check out the best places to see cherry blossoms in Canada.