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Family Fun at Bellevue Botanical Garden: Discovering Nature with Kids

Bellevue Botanical Garden fall view of the Japanese house and yellow fall color leaves in Bellevue Washington

Bellevue Botanical Garden isn’t just a haven of tranquility and beauty for adults; it’s a playground of wonder and exploration for kids too. Nestled in the heart of Bellevue, this garden is a mosaic of nature’s artistry, offering a myriad of opportunities for families to explore, learn, and play. With its diverse landscapes, the garden provides a unique experience with every visit, making it the perfect setting for family outings.

Walking through the garden, with its expansive collection of flora and themed areas, is like stepping into a series of living storybooks. Each garden tells its own tale, from the serene Japanese-inspired landscapes to the wild beauty of the native Northwest forests. It’s a place where imagination roams free, and the natural world opens up in all its splendor for kids to discover and adults to marvel at.

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Our Kids' Top Two Favorite Spots

While every corner of the Bellevue Botanical Garden holds potential for adventure, there are two spots that have captured the hearts of our little explorers time and time again:

The Thrilling Suspension Bridge

Nestled within the Ravine Experience, the Suspension Bridge stands as a testament to adventure. This bridge not only offers breathtaking views of the surrounding forest and ravine but also serves as a thrilling passage that kids adore crossing. Watching the forest from above, children get a bird’s-eye view of the ecosystem, spotting the bustling life beneath them. The bridge’s gentle sway adds a dash of excitement, making each crossing an adventure of its own. It’s a fantastic way for kids to experience the beauty and grandeur of nature while engaging in a fun, physical activity.

The Whimsical Hobbit Door

A gem that’s a bit more hidden but equally enchanting is the Hobbit Door. Tucked away in a corner of the garden, this magical entryway sparks endless imagination about the creatures that might dwell within (fyi, it’s just a utility room for the gardeners). Finding it feels like a treasure hunt, making the discovery all the more special for kids. It’s a perfect spot for storytelling, where the lines between the magical and the natural world blur. The Hobbit Door encourages kids to create their own stories, drawing inspiration from the fantasy of the garden surroundings.

Beyond the Favorites - Japanese House

Beyond these two favorite spots, Bellevue Botanical Garden offers countless other attractions that are sure to delight. From the serene Japanese house by the small waterworks, offering a peaceful retreat, to the vibrant ceolors and textures found throughout the various gardens, there’s always something new to see, smell, and touch.

The garden is a dynamic, ever-changing space where each visit can offer a new experience. Seasonal events, like the enchanting Garden d’Lights, provide even more reason to return and see the garden in a different light.

A Picnic Among Nature

Enhance your garden adventure by packing a small lunch to enjoy amidst the beauty of Bellevue Botanical Garden. Scattered throughout the garden are numerous benches offering the perfect spot for a short picnic. Or our favorite, sit on the long bench in the Japanese house. This simple yet delightful activity allows families to pause, relax, and soak in the serene environment around them. It’s a wonderful way to connect with nature and each other, sharing stories and laughs over a meal.

A Winter Wonderland: Garden d'Lights

During the winter, the Bellevue Botanical Garden transforms into a luminous wonderland that is sure to dazzle families. The annual Garden d’Lights event lights up the garden with over half a million sparkling lights, creating whimsical shapes of plants, birds, animals, and more. This enchanting display brings the magic of the holiday season to life, turning the garden into a festive paradise.

Your kids will love wandering through this glowing landscape, where every turn reveals a new, illuminated surprise. The Garden d’Lights is not only a visual treat but also a delightful experience that captures the joy and wonder of winter. It’s a unique opportunity to make holiday memories with your family, surrounded by the beauty of light and nature.

Making Memories in Nature

Visiting Bellevue Botanical Garden with kids is not just about seeing; it’s about engaging with the natural world in a meaningful way. It’s a chance for families to connect, not just with each other, but with the environment around them. Each visit is an opportunity to make lasting memories, foster a love for nature, and inspire curiosity and imagination in children.

So, grab your walking shoes and embark on a family adventure to Bellevue Botanical Garden. Explore, laugh, and discover together in this beautiful outdoor classroom where nature is the best teacher. Your next family favorite spot awaits in the heart of Bellevue, along with the magical winter spectacle of Garden d’Lights.

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