Marie Selby Botanical Gardens, Sarasota

4.7
#2 of 17 in Historic Sites in Southwest Gulf Coast
Marie Selby Botanical Gardens specialize in epiphytes, especially orchids and bromeliads, and boast one of the largest and most diverse collections in the world. (Epiphystes grow on other plants but are not parasitic; they derive moisture and nutrients from the air and rain.) The staff at this lush tropical oasis is devoted to growing, preserving, and studying these plants. Rest on a bench or have a snack at the cafe. Artists are encouraged to bring their sketchbooks. Consider bringing insect repellant. Use our Sarasota vacation route planner to arrange your visit to Marie Selby Botanical Gardens and other attractions in Sarasota.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
2,283 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • August 13, 2017
    Incredibly beautiful grounds and displays. My husband and I came here as part of our anniversary trip. We were there just before it opened, so we went down to the water by the parking lot to see ehat ...  more »
  • August 12, 2017
    The gardens have recently been renovated and made more "kid friendly". What a phenomenal place for a WEDDING! Views of Sarasota bay and extraordinary orchids and other exotic plants. Not to be missed ...  more »
  • August 11, 2017
    We were recommended to see the gardens by the property management of Sea Crest Apartments in Siesta Key, FL. The Gardens were beautiful. A nice break and very relaxing.  more »
Google
  • May 7, 2017
    This place is magical. The Marie Selby Botanical Gardens is not just a garden, but also a research facility. It contains well over 20,000 species of orchid, and has the second largest orchid collection in the world, seconded only to the Royal Botanic Gardens in the UK. When I went, they were also having a special exhibit of Marc Chagall's work, which included screens replicating his stained glass window pieces and a few paintings. The gardens are not especially large, but one will spend at least 2 hours wondering around the various greenhouses, magnificent banyan trees, mangroves, and palms. Tours are highly recommended.
  • April 11, 2017
    Beautiful gardens that will refresh and revive you. I love the new focus on Marc Chagall art. Always enjoyable are the beautiful collection of live orchids in the greenhouse where the garden tour begins! It's a lovely and relaxing time to wander about the wide lawns, pathways of bamboo, and gorgeous water views! Lunching in the garden one never wants to leave! The gift shop is inviting and and sells live plants and a variety of books and good. Definitely a must see in Sarasota!
  • April 24, 2017
    Selby is one of the best and brightest stars in Sarasota. Beautiful views in a beautiful setting. It can be a truly tranquil experience or a fun and bustling event, but the gardens never disappoint! The children's garden us spectacular. Host any event here!!!! Can't wait to see what the future holds!
  • May 14, 2017
    BEST botanical garden in all of FL! well kept and beautiful . Pleasant and informative staff, plenty of shaded areas and amazing views of the gulf . They even had a water station with funnel cups for an easy and free way to hydrate. All ages will enjoy this place . Food and beverage options available and clean restrooms
  • April 28, 2017
    These botanical gardens are a great oasis within the heart of Sarasota right at the waters edge. The gardens are well cared for and offer a great opportunity to relax and stroll. There are a few really great parts just for kids as well, so bring them along. Unfortunately our experience was a mixed bag. The ladies working the ticket counter were less than cordial (downright icey!), and the flower child in charge of the Selby House Cafe was rude when I purchased a bottle of water. However, don't let the poorly trained employees scare you away from a good time with plenty of photo ops.

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