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Lotusland, Montecito

#159 of 1,108 in Parks in California
Discover a world of exotic plants at Lotusland, created by famed opera singer and garden enthusiast Ganna Walska. Purchased in 1941 and intended to serve as a retreat for Tibetan monks, the estate consumed Walska's private time for most of her life. The singer spent over four decades designing and improving the sprawling property, eventually creating over a dozen distinct gardens. The 15 hectare (37 acre) gardens contain over 3,000 different species of plants, including ferns, aloes, lotuses, cycads, cacti, palms, bromeliads, and euphorbias. If you would like a tour of the gardens, be sure to call ahead of time to make reservations; the estate is open to the public by advance notice only. Tours happen twice a day in season and last approximately two hours. Using our world travel planner, Montecito attractions like Lotusland can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
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Lotusland Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
416 reviews
  • Don't go to L.A. for an arboretum, although (HG) is a great place to visit. Instead, try Lotusland. Hidden inland in a neighborhood, make sure you make an appointment before you visit. This series of ...  more »
  • Great docent led tour of unique, beautiful and a little weird garden. The volume of plants and plant types overwhelms the visitor. The dramatic settings in which plants are placed, the variety of ecol...  more »
  • I’m a docent here - Each of us is different, so each tour is different. But every one should give you one of the very best garden experiences you’ll ever have anywhere. We’re trained to take on not on...  more »
  • The most beautiful gardens I have been to in my lifetime even better than the Huntington Library which was my number one until I went to lotusland. I highly recommend it
  • Interesting gardens but not my cup of tea.
  • Amazing gardens, beautiful pools. Very knowledgeable docents. Reservation is required to visit. My only negative's a bit expensive for a gardens tour. $48 per person.
  • Wonderful botanical gardens! Peaceful and enriching. Be sure to make a reservation as you cannot just show up.
  • Quirky and beautiful. A real pleasure to visit. The docent we had was knowledgeable and pleasant. Although, I got the strong impression that everyone that volunteers there has kind-of drunk the Kool Aid, and feels like these gardens are the most amazing, unparalleled experience possible in California. Still, they sort of breathless enthusiasm added to the charm of the tour, rather than detracted.

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