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White River Gardens, Indianapolis

4.2
#9 of 9 in Parks in Indianapolis
Garden Nature / Park
The White River Gardens are botanical gardens located adjacent to the Indianapolis Zoo in Indianapolis, Indiana in the United States. The gardens are a part of the White River State Park.HistoryWhite River Gardens originally cost $14 million to build. Each summer the garden hosts "Butterfly Kaleidoscope," an exhibition of live butterflies in the Hilbert Conservatory. The exhibit was canceled for two years and restarted again in 2013.GardensThe gardens and conservatory sits to the east of the Indianapolis Zoo and along the White River. There are over 1,000 different species of plants in the collection. It features the Hilbert Conservatory and a variety of different representational gardens including a shade garden, a water garden, and a garden specifically for weddings. One of the missions of the garden is to provide inspiration and ideas to gardeners on how to design their own gardens through design and traditional methods.Hilbert ConservatoryThe Hilbert Conservatory is a glass enclosed conservatory that has a 65 foot high ceiling and totals 5,000 square feet in size. Annually, the Hilbert Conservatory hosts, Butterfly Kaleidoscope, an exhibit that features over 13,000 butterflies from over 40 different species from around the world.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
46 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • These gardens are a hidden gem, absolutely stunning gardens of various styles with wooded spots, water features, and a wedding venue. A very romantic spot!  more »
  • Infrastructure is beautiful with the space divided into 'rooms' with interesting features and whimsical sculpture. The wild prairie plantings were at their peak, replete with butterflies and bees, and...  more »
  • Apparently admission is free if you pay to get into the zoo. It is nice and relaxing. Quite a few butterflies and countless species of plants, shrubs, tress, etc. I rated it a little lower because the...  more »
Google
  • Took the three year old there and she loved the butterflies! Great place, very beautiful!
  • Beautiful Gardens attached right in the zoo! We really enjoyed ourselves. Zoo admission covered the entrance so it didn't cost anything! The butterfly cocoons were really cool to see!
  • Very nice and in some ways relaxing. It is well kept and clean, and there are some genuinely wonderous things in here. There is an indoor and an outdoor area. The one draw and a huge advantage is it's location. It sits right next to a road and on the other side is the zoo. While the sound of cars may be distracting and irritating, it's also easily accessible if you were already going to the zoo.
  • Ive been going here since it opened. I love White River Gardens. The butterflies are beautiful. The gardens have matured wonderfully over the years.
  • They are displaying the butterflies anx it was so beautiful.

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Where to stay in Indianapolis

With limited public transportation in the city, those traveling without a car should consider the location of their accommodations carefully. To stay within walking distance of Indianapolis’ best restaurants and bars, look for a hotel or apartment rental in the arty Mass Ave or Broad Ripple neighborhoods. Downtown lodgings are often more expensive, but provide easy access to Indy’s best-known attractions for those on vacation. Bed and breakfasts in the city’s residential areas provide a healthy dose of Midwestern charm.
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