As I’m walking on this path in the Montreal Botanical Gardens, I hear the beating of Native drums in the distance. I reach another fork in the path and pick the route in the direction of those drums. I don’t know where I am on the huge map. I don’t know which path I’m on. There is dense trees and shrubs around and all that is guiding me is the sound of those drums. Just when I think I’m going to reach the source of these drums they stop and I’m standing in front of the most spectacular pond filled with tiny floating pink flowers.
I sit here for a few minutes on a perfectly located bench. The drums led me here. I have no idea where I am in this huge garden and I don’t know where to go next. I get up to walk away from the pond and find the path to the next garden display, but the drums start again. Like spirits are guiding me to my next Botanical Surprise. I walk the path towards the drums and they get louder and louder. I walk toward the enclosed area where the drums are being played and a security guard jumps in front of me. “This is a private event.” Not the surprise I was hoping for.
Before the beating of the drums distracted me I was on a direct journey through some of the Botanical Gardens main exhibits. I passed beautiful sculptures walking in from the main entrance, and stopped to admire the many fountains on my path.
The paths were straightforward in this part of the gardens and I followed along on the map until I reached the Japanese Garden. Inside the house was a beautiful display of Kimonos and Japanese handwritten scrolls. Then I took a tranquil walk through the Bonsai garden. I didn’t know there were so many species of Bonsai let a lone a pink flowered one!
Outside the Japanese Garden house there was another beautiful pond filled with big Japanese fish. A tranquil spot where just the sound of rushing water from a nearby water fall was heard.
After walking through this quiet area in the gardens I got distracted by the drums and now was not really sure where I was on the Botanical map. So I kept walking until I reached a fork in the path. Go left or go right? I had to make a decision and I’m looking at the map and I know where I want to go on it I want to see the Chinese Garden, it should be right next to the First Nations garden so I go left thinking this is the direction to take. I end up in front of another beautiful water feature and I look for a sign trying to figure out where I am on the map.
Go left or go right? Another gruelling decision. Each time I decide I start to wonder what am I missing on the other path going in the other direction. I’m looking for the main road that runs around the gardens but the path I’m on becomes dense forest.
I see a treehouse and I realize that I’ve walked my way to the upper part of the Botanical Gardens, the forest and tree displays. I decide to pick one of the coloured trails and search for the Frederick Back Tree House which is at the top most point of the Montreal Botanical Gardens. I’m not entirely sure where I am, and I’m not really concerned. I’m enjoying the solitude of walking the path, taking photos and meeting some new friends along the way.
Before I know it the forest path leads me to the house I was looking for. A great place to stop and refill my water bottle and take a bathroom break.
I’m back on track! I follow more paths through amazing forest to get back to the gardens and displays.
At this point I have had enough forest hiking and I’m ready to see the beautiful flower gardens. I follow the map carefully this time and choose the right paths whenever I hit another fork. Finally I arrived at the Chinese Gardens.
The paths along the water of the Chinese Garden were filled with colourful flowers and lanterns. At night this display is a spectacular light show which can be seen during the Gardens of Light (September through November).
The remainder of my walk was just filled with colourful garden after colourful garden.
What I absolutely wish was that I had all day to spend in the gardens. There were so many little places to sit and write or read a book. Little private places with no one around.
Just when I thought I reached the end of the Montreal Botanical Gardens I find myself walking into the green houses! There was just not enough time to really appreciate it all on this one quick visit. As I walked inside the heat and warmth of the greenhouse immediately struck me. I was completely surrounded with flowers, bushes and trees.
It was truly a picture perfect day at the Montreal Botancial Garden. The sun was shining the sky was blue with fluffly clouds, an ideal time to be outdoors and enjoy the many gardens, exhibits and hiking trails. The gardens will definitely be a must-see for me the next time I visit Montreal again!
Have you been to Montreal’s Botanical Garden? Do you have other Botanical Garden Visits you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments below I’d love to hear your stories!
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- Escape to New Worlds in the Biodome Montreal
- Inside Montreal’s Biosphere and a Walk in Parc Jean-Drapeau
- Getting Lost in Montreal Botanical Gardens
- Old Montreal Inspires Photography Excursion
- Hotel Review: Zero 1 Hotel Montreal: Funky, Awesome, Great Location
- Books That Inspire Travel: 300 Reasons to Love Montreal