Gardens & Parks

Fall colours along Bronte Creek

Whether you explore the 2900 acres of gardens and natural areas of the Royal Botanical Gardens, walk the Waterfront Trail, find inner peace at the Labyrinth, play frisbee, roller blade on our pathways, hike from Cootes to Escarpment or picnic in one of our scenic lookouts, our gardens & parks have something for everyone.

Gardens in Burlington

Explore Canada’s largest botanical garden, the Royal Botanical Gardens, featuring over 1,100 hectares (2,700 acres) of breathtaking gardens and spectacular nature sanctuaries. Tour the world’s largest lilac collection, the recently restored Rock Garden, 250,000 iris blooms, the refurbished rose garden, and a Mediterranean Garden under glass. While there, visit the Gardens’ gift shop and three on-site restaurants or have a picnic in paradise.

Other gardens that are Instagram worthy:

  • Central Park – has a beautiful rose and perennial garden in front of the bandshell and the Central Public Library on New St. and community garden plots behind the Central Arena
  • Paletta Lakefront Park – has walking trails and perennial gardens.  Take note of the Rhodendrons along the entrance walk donated by our sister city Itabashi, Japan
  • Maple Park – community garden in the northern corner of the park near Mapleview Centre on Maple Ave maintained by the local Horticultural Society

If you want even more gardens to explore here are some more ideas for you:

  • Canada’s Garden Route– From Victoria to Halifax, the Garden Route is an invitation to discover 25 magnificent gardens and includes Communities in Bloom winners. Green-thumb travelers will enjoy the special horticultural attractions and will delight in the spectacular displays of countless thriving blooms.
  • Garden Ontario – gardening related activities.

Waterfront for all Seasons

Burlington’s waterfront is a wonderful place to explore in all seasons. Many of the waterfront locations are also ideal sites to view birds.  Fall is a great time to bike along the 23 km Waterfront trail and see the colours in our many waterfront parks. Paletta Lakefront Park is also particularly beautiful during this time of year with its mature maples and Discovery Trail along the creek.  During the winter, snow and ice build up along the promenade so heed the signs closing access at The Waterfront at Downtown Burlington. You can enjoy skating on the Rotary Centennial Pond from December until March, weather permitting. Winter is also the time that you can spot trumpeter swans at LaSalle Park Marina.  In spring the cherry blossoms are in bloom in spencer smith park donated by our twin city Itabashi, Japan. In summer, enjoy the miracles of water at the Dofasco Waterjet Plaza. Catch the wind with your model sailboat at the Rotary Centennial Pond. Imagine a magical adventure at the playground. Walk the soft sand beach at Beachway Park to the canal where you can watch freighters coming into the bay.  The waterfront is a destination that offers visitors a place to discover, celebrate, play and relax.

Waterfront Sunset with woman reading story board

Parks in Burlington

Hike the Bruce Trail, and experience one of Canada’s most spectacular world biospheres: the Niagara Escarpment.  Hikers also love our local conservation areas and Bronte Creek Provincial Park.

Enjoy the many different local parks in Burlington. City View Park is located on top of the escarpment overlooking the city.  This 165 acre park has walking trails, a pond, wetland, naturalized areas and a playground.  It is also connected to the Bruce Trail and Kerncliff Park.

Couple looking out a view from top of Kerncliff Park in fall

Gardens & Parks Partners

Gardens & Parks Partners


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Picnic Areas

In addition to reunion and picnic facilities at the RBG, Conservation Areas, Country Heritage Park and Bronte Creek Provincial Park, some local city parks also have designated picnic areas available including:

If you want exclusive access to these picnic areas you need to book in advance online or at recreation centers.

Lowville Park picnic area