Even though Spring has given us promising signs earlier this month, the temperatures dropped in the past week or so. What a better time to dig into my coffer, and find some blooming memories😊 – The Butchart Gardens, that we have visited back in 2016 when we did a road trip across half North America.
After an amazing ride by ferry from Vancouver, we arrived in Vancouver Island, planning to go to Victoria, the capital of the Canadian province British Columbia. As soon as we got down from the ferry, we wondered what if we could take a little detour to these gardens I was reading occasionally about. We found the entrance tickets were a bit expensive, but why not, since we are here already!
The story of these gardens started in 1904, when Butchart family moved from Ontario to Vancouver Island to build a cement plant because of the rich limestone deposits necessary for cement production. After few years, in 1912, when the limestone quarry was exhausted, Jennie Butchart envisioned a garden in its place, and the main quarry turned out to Sunken Garden.
Between 1906 and 1929, the Gardens expanded, with a Japanese Garden on the seaside, an Italian Garden on the former tennis court, and the Rose Garden on the former vegetable garden.
Gifted to their grandson in 1939, Ian Ross promoted the park adding outdoor concerts and new lighting, making it a world-renowned attraction.
When the park was celebrating 100th anniversary, The Butchard Gardens were designated as National Historic Site. Today, there are over 900 varieties of plants.
The short stroll we intended to make in the park turned out to a 3-hour tour, we could not imagine how big, and how beautiful the place is. Flowers, trees, fountains, all nature was a bliss to our senses, and we were very sorry to leave so soon.
At this time The Gardens are temporarily closed due to Covid-19 situation, but this is definitely a place not to be missed when the park is re-opening its gates.
Tip(s) of the day:
- The terraces might be busy with tourists during summer months, when most of the flowers are blooming;
- Allow minimum 4 hours to enjoy properly the gardens;
- No worries if it’s raining, there were 2 big boxes with umbrellas to be borrowed, along the way.
~ visited in July 2016