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Sunken Gardens

Located in the heart of St. Petersburg, this historic botanical oasis behind vine-covered walls offers tropical plants, colorful flower beds, meandering paths, picturesque ponds and cascading waterfalls.

Green space in sunny St. Petersburg is abundant, but the intimate Sunken Gardens are something truly special, and a demonstration of craftsmanship. This is not your usual city park: Over 500,000 tropical plants and flowers fill this exotic attraction that is almost hidden behind vine-covered walls.
Created in the early 1900s by a plumber called George Turner, the Sunken Gardens are now maintained by the city. Turner drained a lake and planted seeds on the rich soil. When the garden became big, he started charging people to admire his handiwork, and later generations kept the gardens alive as a botanical park.

Making your way around, it’s hard to know where to look. The place is packed with orchids, pink bougainvillea, royal palms, fruit trees and cacti, among other species. Follow the designated paths around the 4-acre (1.6-hectare) grounds and discover themed gardens, including Japanese and butterfly sections.

In the water you’ll spot various fish, while dragonflies flit around the ponds, waterfalls and fountains. Chilean flamingos are the most popular residents, and lend themselves beautifully for colorful photos, so keep your camera ready.

Families will find the Sunken Gardens a great place to visit, especially since children enter for half price. Combine your visit with a trip to nearby Great Explorations Children's Museum, where the kids can try out all the exhibits and run around freely after the more restricted walk in the manicured gardens.

The Sunken Gardens also host a wide range of events, and yoga classes are held daily. Try hoop dancing or join horticultural programs such as caring for bonsai trees, or participate in a photography workshop. Check the gardens’ official website for details on times and prices associated with each activity.

The gardens are located just north of downtown St. Pete. The gardens open daily except Sunday mornings, and parking is free. You can bring a picnic, but you can only smoke in designated areas.


Guide to Exploring around Sunken Gardens


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Lodging Near Sunken Gardens

See all 1,247 Hotels near Sunken Gardens
$109
Avalon Hotel Downtown St. Petersburg

Avalon Hotel Downtown St. Petersburg

443 4th Avenue North, St. Petersburg
4.5
of 5, from 274 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Located in Downtown St. Petersburg, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of The Coliseum and Museum of Fine Arts. Salvador Dali Museum and Sunken Gardens are also within 1 mi (2 km).

$110
Hollander Boutique Hotel

Hollander Boutique Hotel

421 4th Ave N, St. Petersburg
4.5
of 5, from 1,951 reviews
3.5 out of 5.0

Located in Downtown St. Petersburg, this spa hotel is within a 15-minute walk of The Coliseum and Museum of Fine Arts. Salvador Dali Museum and Sunken Gardens are also within 1 mi (2 km).

Cozy OLD Northeast/downtown Apartment: Close TO Everything

Cozy OLD Northeast/downtown Apartment: Close TO Everything

1415 3rd St N, St. Petersburg
5.0
of 5, from 12 reviews
0.0 out of 5.0

Located in the heart of St. Petersburg, this apartment is within a 10-minute walk of Sunken Gardens and Great Explorations Children's Museum. Salvador Dali Museum and Museum of Fine Arts are also within 2 mi (3 km).

$116
Ponce De Leon Hotel

Ponce De Leon Hotel

95 Central Ave, St. Petersburg
3.4
of 5, from 1,461 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Located in Downtown St. Petersburg, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Pioneer Park and Museum of Fine Arts. Salvador Dali Museum and The Pier are also within 1 mi (2 km).

Ultra Modern Cottage With Pet Friendly, Green Eco, Walk To Downtown

Ultra Modern Cottage With Pet Friendly, Green Eco, Walk To Downtown

1055 5th Street North, St. Petersburg
5.0
of 5, from 18 reviews
0.0 out of 5.0

Located in the heart of St. Petersburg, this cottage is within a 15-minute walk of The Coliseum, Sunken Gardens, and Great Explorations Children's Museum. Salvador Dali Museum and Museum of Fine Arts are also within 2 mi (3 km).

$109
Cordova Inn

Cordova Inn

253 2nd Ave N, St. Petersburg
3.8
of 5, from 732 reviews
3.0 out of 5.0

Built in 1921, this smoke-free boutique hotel in St. Petersburg, Florida is 3 blocks from Tampa Bay, and 9 miles from the Gulf.

$208
Hyatt Place St. Petersburg / Downtown

Hyatt Place St. Petersburg / Downtown

25 2nd Street North, St. Petersburg
4.4
of 5, from 16 reviews
3.5 out of 5.0

Located in Downtown St. Petersburg, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Jannus Live and Museum of Fine Arts. Salvador Dali Museum and The Pier are also within 1 mi (2 km).

Downtown Living! Classic Florida Bungalow in the Heart of it All!

Downtown Living! Classic Florida Bungalow in the Heart of it All!

522 5th St N, St. Petersburg
0.0 out of 5.0

Located in the heart of St. Petersburg, this vacation home is within a 15-minute walk of The Coliseum, Sunken Gardens, and Great Explorations Children's Museum. Salvador Dali Museum and Museum of Fine Arts are also within 2 mi (3 km).