Anyone that has visited a botanical garden may be under the illusion that it’s all about a variety of floral species in a perfectly manicured setting. If that’s your impression of a botanical garden, that’s perfectly fine and to an extent, that’s pretty much what they are all about. However, after spending a few hours at the Huntsville Botanical Garden during our recent visit to the Rocket City, I have come to the conclusion that there is a much deeper appreciation that we should all have when visiting this type of attraction.
After reading that last paragraph, you may be thinking that I am becoming this huge botanist and I am going to start relaying a myriad of floral descriptions and highlighting the science behind this domain. Botany is understandably an intriguing subject to many but by all accounts, I’m just not into all of that. However, one thing is for sure, I can certainly appreciate a gorgeous location portraying floral varieties from across the globe.
Let’s take a look at our journey through Huntsville Botanical Garden and perhaps by the end of our story, you too will have a greater appreciation of botanical gardens in general.
Huntsville Botanical Garden Information
A visit to a botanical garden may not necessarily be something you would associate with the city of Huntsville, particularly when the amazing US Space and Rocket Center or the historic antebellum homes of the Twickenham historic district awaits you. However, if you choose to add Huntsville Botanical Garden to your itinerary, I don’t think you will leave disappointed.
The spectacular array of flowers on display throughout the 112-acre oasis in Huntsville makes this a no-brainer in our opinion! You can quite easily spend several hours exploring this venue and this is one of the most affordable attractions in the city. Alabama may not be the first state you think of visiting for botanical gardens but I would argue that this should be on your radar.
Adults – $12
Children (Age 3-18) – $8
One of the benefits of Huntsville Botanical Garden is that it is open all year round! For those visitors exploring Huntsville between November to February, you can save $2 on admission prices.
As always, we recommend checking out the website for the latest prices as the above are only accurate at the time of publication.
April to September – Monday to Thursday (9:00 AM to Dusk); Friday & Saturday (9:00 AM to 6:00 PM); Sunday (11:00 AM to 6:00 PM)
October to March – Monday to Saturday (9:00 AM to 5:00 PM); Sunday (12:00 PM to 5:00 PM)
4747 Bob Wallace Avenue,
Huntsville, AL 35805
Eloise McDonald Propst Guest Center
From the moment we pulled into the parking lot at the Huntsville Botanical Garden, I knew that were getting ready for an awesome experience. The sight of the Eloise McDonald Propst Guest Center is enough to make you realize that this is an amazing attraction worth visiting.
If you have been following our travels over recent years, you will know that I am fond of gorgeous architecture and I was immediatley attracted to the design of this Guest Center. I realize that the botanical garden isn’t trying to focus your attention on this part of the experience but it’s certainly a great way to welcome visitors.
A plethora of information is available inside along with a gift shop where you can purchase memorabilia to remind you of your visit to Huntsville. After talking to the knowledgeable folks inside the Guest Center, we headed outside to yet another breathtaking sight.
The view overlooking Little Smith lake with the fountain in the middle is a real sight to behold. Welcome to Huntsville Botanical Garden!
The beauty of this botanical garden is that you walk at your own pace and explore any different area that you wish. All of the different segments to this garden offer a unique reflection on a different aspect of botany.
Whether you are intrigued by a spectacular array of hydrangeas or perhaps you enjoy wandering through a deciduous trail of evergreen azaleas, you can be sure that your journey through Huntsville’s natural paradise will leave you eager to return.
Be sure to collect a map of the gardens before heading out of the guest center because you won’t want to miss everything this attraction has to offer.
You can also download a copy online before heading to Huntsville: HSVBG Map.
Let’s take a look at a couple of our favorite spots around the garden that we don’t think you can afford to miss!
Four Seasons Garden
The picturesque abundance of floral beauty is scattered through the 112 acres. However, one area in particular that you cannot help but love is the Four Seasons Garden located in the heart of the botanical garden.
Easily accessible from the paved walkway that winds through the gardens, an area spanning two acres offers a broad variety of floral species that generate a mass of color and contrast all year round.
From flowering shrubs to a diverse selection of trees, this part of Huntsville Botanical Garden is a botanist’s dream, especially if you are fond of plant species that can flourish in all climates.
This is understandably one of the most popular spots for visitors, particularly as it’s en route to the gorgeous aquatic garden that we immediately fell in love with!
Damson Aquatic Garden
It’s not every day that you get to relax by a gorgeous water feature with Canadian geese and their offspring wandering around right in front of you!
This is exactly what we experienced at the breathtaking Damson Aquatic Garden and this is certainly a part of the botanical garden where you can easily lose track of time.
A scattering of water lilies can be seen flourishing in the 100-foot pool while the aquatic pavilion is the perfect place to relax while enjoying wildlife settling in to their natural habitat.
This is certainly the quintessential representation of a thriving ecosystem as the whole community here creates the perfect environment for visitors to enjoy and embrace the beauty of nature.
Purdy Butterfly House
Did you know that Huntsville was home to the nation’s largest open-air butterfly house? The Purdy Butterfly House consists of an area of 9,000 square feet and allows over 2,000 butterflies the opportunity to fly around in this open space.
Combine this with an assortment of other wildlife including frogs, fish and turtles, and you have another epic example of a blossoming (pardon the pun there given that we are at a botanical garden!) ecosystem thanks to the maintenance and preservation of this location.
If you are interested in visiting the Purdy Butterfly House and want to experience the myriad of butterflies around you, be sure to book a visit to Huntsville between May and September as outside of these months, given the open-air setting, the butterflies are not here!
After reading this post, I hope you are as excited about visiting Huntsville Botanical Garden as we were during our experience. Many botanical gardens around the world offer very similar experiences but there was something quite unique and almost magical about this attraction.
I think when you can visit an affordable attraction and be able to spend all day enjoying the beauty, you know you have found somewhere that is well worth returning to. This is exactly how we feel about Huntsville Botanical Garden!