This is such a beautiful spot and the perfect place to take out of town visitors.
I'd budget about 2-3 hours to spend here. Parking can be a bit tight, so it might be good to go earlier in the day. I did see signs for an overflow lot, but I'm not sure how much of a walk it is to get there.
Once you park, you do have to pay for your spot, but it's a very nominal fee of a few dollars per hour. Entry into the gardens is free, yay!
I have been here twice now, in April and October. I have to say it was a bit more impressive in the spring with all of the beautiful blooming flowers.
On our last visit, there was a wedding going on that day, so the parking lot was closing early. There is also a gift shop on the premise, plus bathrooms.
A great place to take a walk in a peaceful setting. A visit to the gardens combined with a meal out would make for a romantic date night!
Oct 20, 2019
Beautiful gardens. There is the great agricultural part of it, that grows. vegetables etc Then there is a lovely Asian area with bamboo and Bridges and a tea house. Then they're the formal gorgeous gardens with ponds and fish and flowers. They also have one area dedicated to local floral and fauna. The lovely paths lead to so much beautye.
Oct 1, 2019
This place is heavenly! I have seen a lot of gardens and not many compare to the Duke Gardens. I love how they are continuing to expand and create more trails that lead to even a bigger range of flowers. You can't just spend an hour here, you need at least 3 to really experience the tranquility and the sounds of nature. It's seriously a beautiful thing, and I have been here on way more than one occasion and it never ceases to amaze me.
Aug 12, 2019
Completely beautiful. You'll find flowers of every color, shape, and size, all arranged in a gorgeous, well-kept array. There are 4 themed gardens, each equally beautiful. There are ponds with fish and frogs, a small farm with chickens, fruits, and vegetables, a lake with ducks, a bird watching station, and much more. The gift shop is actually surprisingly tiny but has some cool items. There's a good amount of shade and benches to relax, and some paths that feel like little secrets. I wish there was more interactive activities for children, and more children-focused play areas in general, but the beauty and the price are hard to beat.
Aug 31, 2019
Really lovely place unlike anything in the region. Beautiful in every season. Give yourself at least a couple of hours to stroll the gardens and consider a side trek to the Duke University campus and chapel. Enjoy lunch in the food court or adjoining panda express, if you have the energy for the extra walking (hours vary with the school calendar, be advised) The gardeners gift shop (adjacent to parking) has something for everyone. Parking is $2/hour payable by cc.
Nixzali Salcedo Pena
Nov 8, 2019
One of the best gardens I have ever visited! This is a wonderful place to visit. So many great things to look and discover that it's hard to get it all in one visit. I love the beautiful landscapes and the integration of the different types of gardens. I would recommend visiting this place more than once, and during different seasons. It's a great place for photography and to spend time with the family.
Nov 11, 2019
Really well maintained botanical garden with detailed maps to each location. The visitor center was good. You can get duck food for $1 from the store next to the visitor center. Do pick up a map which really helps you guide through the park. Overall spread in 55 acre but you can probably stroll through it in 3 hours or so. Parking is $2 per hour and you need to anticipate your stay duration and prepay for parking.
Nov 8, 2019
Love coming here with my daughter. Plenty of space for her to run around and play with other kids. Lots of tails, beautiful flowers and landscaping, ponds with ducks. Parking can be a little challenging in busy days, but worth it!
Nov 20, 2019
A wonderful place to spend your time! A first-class decorative garden, great variety and layout. Parking can be difficult at times, and you may find it expensive, but the gardens themselves are free to enter. I've been three times so far, each time for a couple of hours or so, and there's still more for me to explore. Highly recommended!
Dec 2, 2019
Absolutely beautiful! Lots of trails and places to sit tucked away in quiet locations. A great place to take a walk or contemplate in peace. I can't wait to go back, and it's free (aside from parking).
May 14, 2019
I was a speaker on orchids to the Triangle Orchid Society. Staff was very helpful with sound. The grounds are amazing with lovely plantings. The front fountain is soothing in sound and mesmerizing to look at. I highly recommend a visit if you live nature and plants! They have a gift shop too!
Jun 14, 2019
Wonderful gardens! Many time gardens are bigger than the staff can maintain... It's understandable the decide to give us more and more plants... When what you'd hope is for them to give you something about what a garden should look like. Something of how garden fits with the landscape... Fits with how we live.They're doing pretty good here. It feels like their a little over extended but on the whole they are able to manage a very large and complex garden.Good for them.
May 5, 2019
It's a really nice place to visit with your family and friends. They a variety of different flowers and plants. They also have couple of lakes/ponds. It's a great place to send you weekend. You can also have a picnic there too. That also have a great parking lot, so u don't have to worry about not finding a parking. I really recommend people going there.
May 10, 2019
This Garden was so beautiful! I loved the inspiration that I got from the variety of plants, from shade-loving to sun-loving. The Garden had beautiful water features and other Hardscape to provide beautiful backdrop options for photographs and just for hanging out! I thoroughly enjoyed going to the Duke Gardens this Spring & look forward to coming back during different seasons to see what beautiful flowers and plants are in bloom at various times during the year. Make sure to bring your camera if you come to this Garden, and give yourself time to just wander around. The sights, sounds & smells of this garden paradise are a true blessing to the Soul!
May 9, 2019
Absolutely gorgeous - a must see when the flowers are in bloom and the weather isn't too hot or too cold. Definitely wear comfortable shoes and bring a water bottle, because there is a TON of natural beauty for you to take in. The guide at the counter when we went into the visitors center was extremely knowledgeable and worked with us to plan a visit that would take about 1.5 hours (and she was spot on). I am so glad we made the trip over here!
Jul 4, 2019
It’s so gorgeous here! You must visit if you’re in the area! The many colors in the garden are mesmerizing 😍 it was my first time coming here today and I loved it! It’s a great place to go to enjoy time with family and friends. There’s lots to see & explore! It is also dog friendly between certain times. Parking is $1 for 30 minutes and they even provide maps to guide you through the gardens. There’s colorful birds butterflies and there’s lots of ducks and turtles along with fish! I will definitely be back!
Jun 25, 2019
Such a beautiful place to visit! While parking has a fee visiting the Gardens is free to the public! It is a great activity to do when you're on a budget or if you just want to enjoy a nice day outside. The Gardens is family friendly with a massive variety of things to see throughout the Gardens. There is something for everyone!
Jun 28, 2019
I'm from out of town. When the locals mentioned Duke Gardens, I thought there would be colorful plants and flowers. But everything was green. Everything was somewhat well maintained. The staff was friendly. But they were focused on improving the gift shop, rather than the garden itself. It was still fun, but the place should be called Duke Forrest. Given this, I still want to go back.
Jun 20, 2019
really beautiful relaxing place. ample parking available but it might be all taken during nice summer days. They have different sections dedicated to different themes and they transport you instantly to that culture. Also please try out their ice cream bars, really delicious and healthy looking.