Must-Visit Gardens in Montreal, Canada

Look out for the waterfalls at the Japanese Garden within the Montreal Botanical Garden
Look out for the waterfalls at the Japanese Garden within the Montreal Botanical Garden | © David Giral / Alamy Stock Photo
Kathryn Beeson

Montreal, a city known for its stunning gardens, offers a wealth of serene beauty that could captivate visitors for days on end. However, for those seeking to make the most of their time, Culture Trip has enlisted the expertise of our local insiders to narrow down the must-visit gardens in the city. From lush oasis to meticulously manicured landscapes, these recommended green spaces are the perfect places to prioritize and experience the enchanting allure of Montreal’s botanical wonders.

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Jardin Botanique

Montreal’s Jardin Botanique is among the largest and most exciting of the world’s major botanical gardens. With 10 exhibition greenhouses, over 20 thematic gardens and the Frédéric Back Tree Pavilion spread out over a site covering 185 acres (75ha), it’s easy to lose hours exploring the different plant life on display, no matter what time of year you visit. Come in the summer for gorgeous rose blooms, on a chilly autumn day for atmospheric outdoor lantern displays, or in winter to immerse yourself in a world of bonsai trees and butterflies. Recommended by local insider Caitlin Stall-Paquet

Jardins des Floralies

The city’s Parc Jean-Drapeau is home to many key attractions. When you visit, an afternoon stroll around the Jardins des Floralies should be right at the top of your priorities list. It was constructed for the 1980 International Floralies competition, and here, you’ll be able to enjoy several themed gardens from the world’s most prominent landscape designers from Canada, the USA, France, England, Mexico, Belgium and Italy. Footpaths wind through thousands of different plant species, landscaped beautifully around lagoons and other features. It’s easy to spend the best part of the day here, especially when the sun is shining and the garden’s colors are at their best. Recommended by local insider Caitlin Stall-Paquet

Japanese Garden

The Japanese Garden is part of Montreal’s Jardin Botanique. Designed by Ken Nakajima, the six-acre (2.5ha) space evokes a sense of harmony inspired by traditional Japanese landscaping, complete with stones, water features and other landscape elements deliberately placed to create a peaceful environment that transports visitors away from the stresses of modern life. If you need a break from the city for a while, the Japanese Garden is the perfect place to reflect quietly as you wander through pretty displays of rhododendrons, peonies and crab-apple trees to the soothing sounds of ponds and springs. Recommended by local insider Tess Boissonneault

Chinese Garden

Traditional Chinese landscape design centers around balance and contrast – yin and yang. Montreal’s Chinese Garden, also housed in the Jardin Botanique, is a stunning exploration of these principles. Originally designed in 1991 by renowned architect and landscaper Le Weizhong, the garden uses water features and stones, as well as traditional Chinese pagodas and pavilions, to create a uniquely asymmetrical, highly metaphorical space that stands in contrast with western conventions. Recommended by local insider Tess Boissonneault

Jean-Drapeau Park

Situated on Saint Helen’s Island, Jean-Drapeau Park offers an oasis of greenery and tranquility in the heart of the Saint Lawrence River. This expansive park features beautifully landscaped gardens, including the Floralies Gardens and the Japanese Pavilion Garden, providing a serene escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the park’s winding paths, rent a bike, or simply find a peaceful spot to relax and soak in the natural surroundings.

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