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Glacier Gardens Rainforest Adventure

7600 Glacier Highway, 7 Mi From Downtown Cruise Docks, 1 Mi From the Airport, Juneau, AK
+1 907-790-3377
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Ranked #34 of 81 activities in Juneau
Type: Gardens
Owner description: View the world renowned Upside Down Flower Towers only at Glacier Gardens, AND indulge your senses in the naturally stunning temperate rainforest... more » Owner description: View the world renowned Upside Down Flower Towers only at Glacier Gardens, AND indulge your senses in the naturally stunning temperate rainforest garden of the Tongass National Forest (tour provided in cooperation with the United States Forest Service). Your fully guided tour offers you a unique and fascinating garden experience that combines natural landscapes and non-native manicured gardens for the most colorful garden display found in Alaska's capital city. Tucked in the grasp of the mighty Tongass National Forest you will discover an Alaskan botanical garden unlike any found throughout the world. Travel onboard a guided tour through Juneau's temperate rainforest in covered vehicles while learning about native plant species such as Sitka Spruce and Western Hemlock trees, devil's club, and skunk cabbage. No tour gives you easier access to the gorgeous Tongass atmostphere. The vast gardens are the creation of Steve and Cindy Bowhay, former local commercial fisherman and local master gardeners. Your guide will escort you through the gardens, past the renowned Flower Towers which were named as America's Most Interesting Landmark in a 2012 Reader's Digest issue, and into the rugged and unforgiving Tongass habitat to explain about the history of this property and to highlight the interesting characteristics of the natural environment you now find yourself. Bright floral arrangements and elegantly designed landscapes complement the natural beauty of the towering temperate rainforest and the cascading waterfalls bubbling nearby. There is a break for a short walk to an amazing cliff-side panoramic viewpoint where the thick forest gives way to a sweeping view of Juneau, the Mendenhall Valley, Gastineau Channel, Douglas Island, and the Chilkat Mountains. You return to the lower gardens where you can spend more time meandering the grounds and indulging in the Visitor's Center atrium filled with even more floral structures, such as the heart shaped impatience and hanging flower gardens - some petunias stretch to up to 12 feet long! The Visitor's Center features a live video feed from a camera aimed at an active bald eagles nest that is found on the property. You can find the feed online at our website as well. The Garden Gift Shop sells garden specific gifts like the wildflower-seed packets that you can plant at home, and the Garden Cafe serves espresso drinks, beverages, and light snacks so you can re-energize for your next Juneau adventure. « less
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Thousand Oaks, California
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
19 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2014 NEW

Owner has done some beautiful and original upside down displays. Trees are place in ground with root balls upward and then planted with stunning local floral. Overall just an beautiful site with scenic views and very friendly and knowledgeable staff. Really glad we went.

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Carlsbad NM
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
20 attraction reviews
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2014

Drizzly day. But the wetness of the day seemed to enhance the scenery somehow. The flowers on the upside down trees seemed to shine, but I feared that the tour bus tires were going to spin on the wet roadway since we ascended to an observation platform that was at least 800 feet from where we started. Tour guy was... More

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Villa Grove, Illinois
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2014

Beautiful gardens and excellent tour guides in little motored golf cart like vehicles. Great we didn't have to walk. The flowers were all in full bloom and beautifully arranged. Very worth the time to see.

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Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
6 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2014

The Glacier Gardens were a beautiful sight! The tour guides were very informative about each individual plant and talked about the history of the gardens. There was a short free driving tour that went 600 feet above sea level. The gift shop was cute as well. Definitely worth the visit!

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Fox Lake, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 attraction reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2014

we did this in part with the mendenhall glacier tour. it was very good. our tour give was very nice. i forgot his name but he looks like rutledge wood (see image).

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Golden Meadow, Louisiana
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2014

What a unique way to handle a problem! After glaciers knocked down trees in this area, one gentleman decided to plant flowers in the topsy-turvey trees. The roots held the most beautiful. colorful flowers!! The covered area used for receptions and other activities were also filled with plants and flower, The tram tour took us 500 feet above Juneau and... More

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Ajax, Canada
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
4 attraction reviews
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2014

This is a real treat for anyone who enjoys horticulture. The gardens are alive with colour in what is a well-planned, natural environment. Beautiful rhododendrons, and weeping Japanese maples were of particular interest to me. The upside-down tree gardens are a great idea and work wonderfully well in this natural setting. We took the ride to the top of the... More

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California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2014

This was one part of our excursion when we were in Juneau. Didn't know what to expect but was very happy with what we saw. Even though it was a rainy day, we had a great time. The cart that takes you to the top of the rainforest, to the lookout point is covered so we didn't get wet. The... More

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United States
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
7 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014

I visited in June 2014. Truly gorgeous, on the journey through the park there is a little bit of overlap with the Tongass Nat'l Forest, so I had an opportunity to get a taste of that as well. I am blown away by what the owners have accomplished. This would especially be a highlight for any green thumbs out there.

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Hollywood, Florida
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
26 attraction reviews
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2014

Unusual upside down tree gardens! The tram tour was exciting as the driver drove us 500+ feet upward. She pointed out the different animals and plant life which was interesting. The gardens and adjoining temperate rainforest is a beautiful experience.

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