Family-Friendly Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island

The family-friendly Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island are a family-run garden destination since 1906. But these days, it’s not just a destination to view pretty plants and flowers, it is oh so much more.

We recently visited Victoria at the Doubletree by Hilton downtown to try their My Stay My Car program! (Here are a few more things to do with kids in Victoria.)

Bring it on with the kids to explore, ride a carousel, do a scavenger hunt, and enjoy lawn concerts and fireworks all summer long.

Butchart Gardens offers a Family Discovery Walk scavenger-hunt-type activity, just stop in at the Visitor Information Centre before you set off into the gardens. They will provide a clipboard and pencil so your children can draw pictures of the various special things they will see along your walk through the gardens. Once complete, check back in at the Information desk and your child will receive a special surprise for doing the discovery walk.


  • The rose garden contains nearly 3000 Rose plants with 250 different rose variations
  • Every Fall, 400,000 bulbs are planted
  • Every Spring over 100,000 tulips emerge
  • At Christmas, (December 1 – January 6) there are 100,000’s of lights on display at the gardens
  • They employ 50 full-time gardeners year round
  • They employ 70 gardeners in the Summer months
  • They are open year round, even Christmas day
  • Gourmet picnics are just one of the culinary offerings at Butchart Gardens (Or you can bring your own picnic!)
  • Nightly lawn concerts run through July and August
  • Also in July & August, every Saturday night they have a fireworks show


The gardens use only their own reservoir for watering, compost to produce their own soil and have greenhouses on the property to propagate their own plants. They don’t use the city water supply for maintaining the gardens at all.



The Blue Poppy is a casual lunch and dinner spot in the Summer months in a beautiful sunbathed conservatory setting.

The Dining room was named one of the Top 100 Restaurants in Canada by OpenTable for the third year in a row in 2017 and one of the Top 100 Best Outdoor Dining Restaurants in Canada by OpenTable for the third year in a row, set in the former residence of the Butcharts.

The Coffee Shop, where we enjoyed a quick lunch and freshly made soups after our walk through the gardens, offers specialty coffees, baked goods and soups and sandwiches.


The Gelateria just opened, with two Italian-trained gelato makers and all flavours are made on site.

Be sure to visit Butchart Gardens with the whole family next time you’re on the Island.

*The Butchart Gardens provided a complimentary visit for us.


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