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Norfolk Botanical Garden, Norfolk

(4.6/5 based on 700+ reviews on the web)
Walk, take a tram, or boat your way through Norfolk Botanical Garden. These gardens are listed as a Virginia Historic Landmark and are on the National Register of Historic Places. They originally opened in 1938 on 30 hectares (75 acres) of land, though today they are slightly smaller due to the nearby airport. With 19.3 km (12 mi) of walking paths, you can visit the Bicentennial Rose Garden, Japanese Garden, and English-style Border Walk, among many other landscape-themed gardens. Seasonal tours via tram or boat offer information about the habitat around Lake Whitehurst, or you can use the self-guided cell phone tour as you pass numbered signs within the gardens. Using our world travel planner, Norfolk attractions like Norfolk Botanical Garden can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • This review is for our holiday season visit but this is our favorite local spot year round. If you are in the Hampton Roads area in November/December be sure to put this on your to do list. I highly r...  more »
  • Many different and beautiful gardens to explore. There are boat rides in the spring and summer and a tram that runs all year. There is a large rose garden, great butterfly garden, a lovely renaissance...  more »
  • This is not only a beautiful place but a fun place for the kids. I was grateful for the tram ride. It's a learning experience for all ages. Boat ride was so nice.  more »
Google
  • My favorite place to walk. There is always something new to see blooming. The people are great! Lots to keep the kids busy with a huge sand mountain and a garden just for them. Paved and unpaved paths - very easy to get in both short half mile walks or long walks 4+ miles.
  • They really should tell newcomers who know nothing about how this is set up that until dark you cannot really see much. They happily sold us $80 in tickets at the opening and failed to mention that it was lame and not worth taking little kids to see until dark at 6pm. We certainly didn't have time or inclination to hang around in the cold for 2 hours waiting. had they told us there was nothing to see until dark we would have come later another day. They need to learn how to treat the public especially with small children. No refund or even any discount coupons offered. Rip off.
  • Went here for the first time in the summer and I surely regret not making it here more often! What an absolutely beautiful job the staff and ground crews do to keep the place looking fantastic! Some highlights included the rose garden, butterfly house/wildflowers, the fountain garden, and the flowering trees. They also have a really nice Japanese garden that was quite lovely as well, and very peaceful. If you come here prepare to do a lot of walking! This place is quite expansive with lots of paved trails as well as a couple hiking loops as well. There is also the option to take a boat tour around the canals, but I believe there is a cost with that. And if you're not up for all the walking there are trolleys that can tour guests around throughout the park. This place is great for families, couples, or even friends just looking to get out and enjoy nature. There is a nice little gift shop in the main building and a quaint cafe near the Japanese garden. Another thing I really enjoyed is that there are drinking fountains spread out around the park so if you need some water it is always within short walking distance! And there are plenty of restroom facilities around where you won't find yourself having to walk long distances to use one. I also recommend you come see their Christmas light display during the winter, it's well worth the cost and all you do is simply drive around the grounds in your vehicle looking at beautiful elaborate lighting displays!
  • I come here frequently for the trails and to get away from the crowds. You can get about 4 miles out of it if you walk the perimeter. The trails are well maintained and the gardens are pretty. It's cool to sit up on the hill and watch airplanes come and go. There is a lot of ambient noise due to the neighboring airport and close proximity to highways. The driving tour of the Christmas lights gets ridiculously crowded. I recommend waiting until the end of the season when they open it up for walking. I docked them one star because I lost a month of my annual membership when they shut down to set up Lantern Asia.
  • Did the million bulb walk last weekend. It was beautiful. So many holiday lights to see.