We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“breathtaking tulips!”

The Butchart Gardens
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: These internationally acclaimed floral display gardens and National Historic Site of Canada started over 100 years ago and remain privately owned by the family. Jennie Butchart wanted to make her husband's depleted limestone quarry look better and the result is the Sunken Garden. Other gardens include the Rose Garden, the Japanese Garden and the Italian Garden. The gardens are meticulously maintained and provide a riot of colour for much of the year. During the summer, special lighting subtly illuminates the gardens, musical entertainment takes place on the Concert Lawn, and there are ten spectacular Saturday night Firework Shows. The Magic of Christmas season also has beautiful lighting and evening entertainment, and an outdoor skating rink. Spring offers hundreds of thousand flowering bulbs and Autumn is the time for dahlias, chrysanthemums and fall colours. The Gardens is open daily, year round.
Useful Information: Lockers / storage, Wheelchair access, Bathroom facilities, Food available for purchase, Activities for young children
Reviewed May 30, 2008

Just had to add my glowing review of my visit to Victoria B.C. in May 2007 for the most amazing spectacular, knock your eyes out colors of tulips I've ever seen in my life. From the moment we drove up the driveway to the parking lot, the landscapings and plantings were arranged in the most beautiful colors. I'm sure the place is beautiful year round, but on this particular visit it was right at the height of the tulips in bloom and that was totally amazing. Worth the ferry ride from Seattle for a visually beautiful visit.

1  Thank travelwork
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (9,563)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
  • More languages
All reviews
"sunken garden"
in 1,001 reviews
"japanese garden"
in 722 reviews
"butchart gardens"
in 1,867 reviews
"rose garden"
in 648 reviews
"blue poppy"
in 97 reviews
"fireworks show"
in 89 reviews
"flowers and plants"
in 99 reviews
"full bloom"
in 216 reviews
"limestone quarry"
in 139 reviews
"gift shop"
in 420 reviews
"christmas lights"
in 126 reviews
"dining room"
in 176 reviews
"vancouver island"
in 367 reviews
"water features"
in 86 reviews
"tour bus"
in 100 reviews
"high tea"
in 242 reviews
"two hours"
in 149 reviews

8,778 - 8,782 of 9,573 reviews

Reviewed May 28, 2008

Having heard, and seen, so much about the Butchart Gardens before going, I was concerned they would not live up to the image I had created of them in my mind but they far, far exceeded my expectations. They have to be, the most beautiful and stunning gardens I have been privileged to see anywhere in the world.

I didn't think the entry price was overly high ($25 Canadian) considering what you can pay in the UK nowadays to view gardens and parks. To me it was worth every cent.

It appeared an advantage going mid May, as the gardens were not overly busy, and it was easy to walk around, photograph or just admire the flowers at will. The gardens were a blaze of colour - apart from the Japanese one which was more subtle and calming but none the less beautiful. People just gasped as they walked around the corner and saw the sunken garden for the first time - as a result of our visit, I would highly recommend May and tulip time to view the gardens (our guide told us that the start of June is probably not the best time to visit as the flowers are being changed over) although I'm sure they are stunning at other times of the year as well.

It was a scorching hot day when we went and the Italian ice cream on sale at the end of the walk around went down very well! Other refreshements and food were available and the gift shop was huge and full of varied souvenirs to buy.

It was a bit of a journey to get there from Vancouver via the ferry (there are other alternatives) but worth it without doubt. Coupled with a visit to delightful Victoria the whole day was one of the highlights of our trip to Canada.

2  Thank dedicatedtraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 19, 2008

Yes, it is pretty. But expect A LOT of people clogging up the paths taking pictures. And we didn't even go during the peak season.

The Japanese Garden and Sunken Garden were very nice. Maybe it was just me and my companion, but the Italian Garden was very underwhelming. Perhaps it is better in the high Summer?

The roses in the Rose Garden were not blooming yet, so that was kind of a wash.

Price paid for 2 adults to visit the garden in Mid-May? $50. Would we go again? Probably not. It seemed a bit of a tourist trap to me, but ymmv, of course. Just be aware of the admission price before you go and that it will probably be way crowded.

4  Thank jemangepdx2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 30, 2008

During a recent trip to Victoria we decided to go to Butchart Gardens. We were a little hesitant to go because of the price but, it is well worth the cost of admission. There was almost too much to see! The sunken garden is just unbelievable, we spent alot of time in this area just strolling through the many paths and around the pond. We also climbed up to the look out atop a big rock in the centre of the garden for great birds eye views of the sunken garden. As you are leaving the sunken garden there is an massive, amazing water fountain called the Ross fountain. Be sure to sit a while and take in the water show that it produces. The other gardens were just as spectacular. We loved the Japanese garden, the star fountain and the Italian garden. The rose garden was not in bloom yet but, it was filled with seasonal flowers such as tulips and hyacinth. And I can't imagine how fantastic it must be when all the roses are in bloom! My advice is take your time, there is so much to see! We sat down several times during our visit and just tried to take it all in. A lovely place to sit is infront of the sturgeon fountain, beautiful. The gift shop is HUGE and there are several different places to eat in the gardens however, we didn't eat while we were there. We really enjoyed the Gardens and would highly recommend going. I would love to come back in some of the other seasons to see how the park changes throughout the year and also to see the rose garden in full bloom in the summer!

3  Thank Linnybee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed September 20, 2007

My 2nd favorite garden ever! The paths are easily followed so you can see the entire garden. In mid-September the flowers were still in great shape. Absolutely beautiful. Watch out for the information center though. I spoke with 3 different information workers and not one of them told me it would take at least 15 minutes to get a taxi. So despite knowing when I had to catch the BC Ferry in Swartz Bay, they told me to come to their desk at 5:10 to call for the taxi. We did so and did not get the taxi until 5:30. It is a 35 minute taxi to Swartz Bay –but our taxi cab driver zoomed up there by 5:50! We thought we made it ---but we were misinformed by 3 of the Butchart info persons that the Ferry would leave at 6pm. It was actually 7pm because the scheduled had changed for this season. My advice – get Pacific Coach Lines to take you everywhere. We would have saved a lot of money and time.

5  Thank John H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Butchart_Gardens, Public Relations at The Butchart Gardens, responded to this reviewResponded November 14, 2007

I was sorry to read of a recent issue raised of obtaining a taxi at The Butchart Gardens.

As an employee of The Gardens I know staff take great pride in providing useful and timely information to many thousands of visitors each year. As might be expected, taxi availability does vary upon the time of day and the weather. I've brought the matter to the attention of our Visitor Services supervisor to ensure we offer better cautions on how long it may take to obtain a taxi. As we do not have any affiliation with taxi companies the timeliness of service remains out of our control.

Ferry schedules change with some frequency and we do work to ensure we have the most recent information for visitors. We will redouble our efforts in ensuring current schedules are available to staff.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed The Butchart Gardens also viewed

Victoria, Victoria Capital Regional District
Ucluelet, Barkley Sound
Central Saanich, Victoria Capital Regional District
Victoria, Victoria Capital Regional District

Been to The Butchart Gardens? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing