Visitor Information 2021
You can expect to find your happy place when you visit the University of Alberta Botanic Garden!
Relaxation, rejuvenation and enjoyment are only 15 minutes SW of Edmonton. At this garden in a forest, you'll discover how nature ignites your "happy hormones", while you experience a peaceful, beautiful natural environment. Explore cultural gardens, northern climate-hardy plant collections and extensive natural areas, all on 240 acres.
In addition to a peaceful stroll through a beautiful garden, you can expect other pleasant diversions. We have a lineup of special moments to add to your experience , all designed with safety in mind. You can learn more about what's coming up at the Garden here.
Your happy place is waiting!
The Garden opens for the season on May 6, 2021.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, operational changes are in effect. We are following the guidelines of public health officials and the University of Alberta. Please take a moment to read about the measures we are taking to ensure visitor and staff safety, and plan ahead for an enjoyable visit. Check this website before you come to the Garden, as information may change.
Reserve Your Visit
All visitors must make advance reservations using our online system. Walk ups are not permitted. This helps us manage capacity and flow of visitors in the Garden, minimize contact points, and allow for physical distancing. We are required to gather contact information for all visitors to the Garden, which we will do at the time of reservation.
Group size is currently limited to 10 people. Within those groups, any parties that are not in the same household must practice safe physical distancing of 2 meters. There are no group discounts in 2021.
Before You Visit
- Visitor information might change during the season. Please check this website for the most current updates.
- Please plan to arrive on time. Entry times are staggered to ensure adequate physical distancing for patrons.
- A mandatory MASK POLICY is currently in place. Masks or face shields are required at all times, except for brief removal to eat or drink. Children age two and under are exempt.
Do not come to the Garden:
- if you have a fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose or shortness of breath.
- if you have travelled outside of Canada within the last 14 days.
- if you are a close contact of a person who has tested positive for COVID-19.
- Please follow signage and direction from staff.
- Guests are required to maintain physical distance of 2 meters / 6' from any person or group who is not part of their immediate household.
- Some garden areas that are too confined for appropriate distancing have been closed.
- Children must remain close to their parents / guardians at all times
- All indoor spaces are closed, including showhouses and Welcome Centre, with the exception of washrooms.
- Drinking fountains are closed. Please bring your own water bottle.
- Most benches are available for seating, however, picnic tables are out of service.
- Tram service is closed - there are no golf carts for public.
- Loaner wheelchairs and strollers are not available.
Food and Beverage
- Outside food is not permitted, with the exception of water bottles and small snacks.
- The Patio Cafe concession is open, with light offerings and beverages available for purchase.
- Brunch Boxes and Twilight Picnic Packages are available for purchase - advance booking is required.
Most areas of the Garden are accessible on paved or brick pathways. Some parts of the Garden may be challenging for unassisted wheelchairs (eg. hills, rough terrain).
Tips for Enjoying Your Visit
- Bring your water bottle and small snacks (no other outside food or picnics, except for Brunch Boxes or Twilight Picnics reserved from the Garden in advance).
- Bring your camera.
- Comfortable walking shoes will make your day a happier one.
- Dress for the weather – in Alberta, that means come prepared for any eventuality!
- The Garden Shop is closed, so remember to bring your sunscreen, mosquito repellent and umbrella.
- Gardening enthusiasts – bring your notebook or phone so you can note the names of amazing plants you’d like to try in your own garden.
- Leave animals at home. With the exception of certified service animals, pets are not permitted at the Garden. On special Dog Days only, this restriction is lifted (May 22-24).
- Smoking of any kind, including vaping and cannabis, is strictly prohibited inside the Garden.
A Note on Garden Maintenance
When you visit this year, you may notice that some spots in the Garden look a little on the “wild” side. The Aga Khan Garden and Kurimoto Japanese Garden, both located near the entrance, are among our most highly maintained areas. As you venture beyond these iconic gardens, you may see that some areas look less than ideal.
A few areas have been closed for necessary rejuvenation. The University is going through structural changes to address funding issues, and the Garden is no exception - significant reductions to our budget are a reality. And our priority to keep the Garden safe for guests during COVID-19 has complicated operations.
We’re determined to come out the other side of these times with a thriving, resilient and sustainable Garden that will serve you and the community as a place of peace, joyful gathering and connection to nature -- and each other -- for many years to come. We’ve mustered all our collective creativity, energy and focus and are doubling down on our mission to connect people with the earth so they cherish the essence of life.
In the meantime, thank you for your patience and understanding. Bear with us - better things are coming, they'll just take a little time.
We want to know about your experience - the great, the good, the ugly. If your expectations weren’t met during your visit, please let us know so we can make it right at email@example.com.
For more information call (780) 492-3050 or email firstname.lastname@example.org