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“Enjoyable stop”

Tucson Botanical Gardens
Ranked #22 of 311 things to do in Tucson
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Named one of the Top 10 Gardens in to visit in North America in 2017 by the Canada Garden Tourism Council and One of the Best Secret Garden in America by Reader's Digest, Tucson Botanical Gardens is an “Oasis in the Heart of Tucson. Featuring seventeen residentially-scaled specialty gardens, including a Barrio Garden, Zen Garden and a Cactus & Succulent Garden landscaped with unusual rocks from the Harrison Yocum collection. Tropical Butterflies from around the world are featured in the Cox Butterfly & Orchid Pavilion October-April. Special annual seasonal exhibits. Experience an outdoor Garden Railway, botanically-inspired gift shops, year-round tours, art exhibits and lunch at Cafe Botanica. Closed Thanksgiving, the Dec. 24 & 25, Jan. 1, the first Saturday in February and July 4.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Food available for purchase
Reviewed April 13, 2013

Drove down from the Phoenix area specifically to see the tropical butterfly exhibit, and was not disappointed. Yes, it is a very small enclosure but most people are not staying that long (it is very warm and humid--bring some water if you plan to stay awhile).

They had released some butterflies into the enclosure earlier in the day, and I found a bench next to an open container where a few butterflies were still getting acclimated before flying out. It was a pleasure to watch a female Starry Night butterfly (gorgeous) as she prepared to take off. There was quite a variety of butterflies with brilliant colors and intricate patterns, and a HUGE Atlas moth which I had never seen before. The tropical plants in this enclosure are interesting, and the flowers are lovely.

For me the butterflies were the highlight, though after leaving there it was enjoyable to walk through the gardens and enjoy everything in bloom. There was also a little buildng that had a small mineral display, which I enjoyed and only wished the cabinets were lit to feature the unique items.

On the way out I was most pleasantly surprised by a gorgeous display of giant irises in full bloom, ranging in colors from lightest peach to deepest purple. It had been several years since my last visit and while I don't make the trek each year, I was glad to have stopped there today.

(Note: I wondered about parking on a Saturday since the lot is small. As it turned out I had no trouble finding a space but if they are full, there is attendant parking available at the nearby grocery store.)

Thank cjs123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"butterfly house"
in 96 reviews
"frida kahlo"
in 46 reviews
"gift shop"
in 73 reviews
"butterfly room"
in 15 reviews
"butterfly display"
in 10 reviews
"zen garden"
in 10 reviews
"beautiful butterflies"
in 14 reviews
"poison dart frogs"
in 9 reviews
"miniature train"
in 10 reviews
"desert plants"
in 47 reviews
"children's garden"
in 16 reviews
"native plants"
in 19 reviews
"plant life"
in 12 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 13 reviews
"entrance fee"
in 8 reviews
"well worth the visit"
in 9 reviews
"desert museum"
in 11 reviews

628 - 632 of 803 reviews

Reviewed April 8, 2013

This garden in Eastern Tucson was a family's home and property. There was a children's class visiting while I was there. This was not a problem. The citrus trees were in bloom which was wonderful to smell the blossoms. Reading about the family that created the garden was very interesting. The design gardens to give people ideas in creating outdoor rooms in their Tucson properties were outstanding. In addition to the Butterfly House you could watch the butterflies metamorp from pupa's to butterflies. It is always wonderful to watch butterflies spread their brand new wings. There is also a small art gallery. I would recommend this garden to everyone.

Thank Randy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 29, 2013

Expected many varieties of cacti and sonoran desert vegetation. Did not expect the wonderful butterfly enclosure. This a small garden and easy to see everything. Well worth the visit.

Thank Sbrecken1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2013

Although we have spent time in Tucson and Green Valley for the last seven or eight years, we never had been to the Botanical Gardens. What a joy to visit. The Butterfly Experience was worth the trip. And oh, the gardens! It's a compact space, with easy walking paths. Everything is well-labeled. Lots of variety. Good eats in the cafe. Nice gift shop. All in all, a great introduction to desert plants, trees and, of course, cactus.

Thank RhodyBFL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 23, 2013

A quiet retreat with much to feast your eyes and ears on. Currently there is a special exhibit of tropical butterflies that is to die for. If you've never seen tropical butterflies, you are in for a treat. I also had the good fortune to see a pair of nesting thrashers. Just a gorgeous park for a visit on a spring afternoon.

Thank Jean B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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