Bok Tower Gardens was the first stop of our 3 Day Weekend Family Getaway in Central Florida. My son loves botanical gardens and taking photos of flowers, so I knew he would enjoy Bok Tower Gardens. However, I was not expecting that we would enjoy almost 4 hours here playing, soaking up the beauty and learning a piece of Florida history.

We have lived in Florida for 4 years now and I was unaware of this place. It is a hidden gem located on the second highest point in Florida. The exact location is Lake Wales, approximately 11 miles from LEGOLAND Florida. Bok Tower Gardens is a National Historic Landmark that has been a popular tourist attraction since the 1920s, but with the new addition of Hammock Hollow it is truly a magical and educational destination for families.

Bok Tower Gardens is located on 2nd highest point in Florida

Bok Tower Gardens is a must see Central Florida attraction centrally located among hills of citrus! It offers acres of gardens and architecture, including the famous 205-foot Singing Tower. There is a pebble pathway at the Visitor Center featuring a flowing pattern that caught my kids attention immediately.  There are two main pathways that lead into the core Gardens, and several routes to take to get to the Singing Tower. TIP –>It is about an 8-10 minute walk to the Singing Tower from the Visitor Center. The reflection pool in front of the tower is a beautiful sight to see!

“Let’s take pictures then play all day,” my son exclaimed. And that is exactly what we did.

Hammock Hollow is a magical outdoor space for children

Hammock Hollow is a new section of Bok Tower Gardens which provides a unique hands-on exploration of nature. Bridges, fairies, sand, logs, stones, water, music, crafts, and theater create an exciting way to play among a beautiful landscape! This child-focused area is divided into sections that allow kids to learn and explore in creative ways that ignite their senses.

Pinewood Estate Tour provides an interesting look at Florida history

The Pinewood Estate is a 20-room Mediterranean-style mansion located in the heart of Bok Tower Gardens. The home was built in the early 1930s  and is now open for tours throughout the year to visitors of Bok Tower Gardens. Note that it does require an additional ticket for admission. My daughter was a bit too young for it but my son takes after my husband with his extreme interest in history.

Tips for Visiting Bok Tower Gardens With Kids

  • Bok Tower Gardens is located at 1151 Tower Blvd.  Lake Wales, FL 33853
  • It is open from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. 365 days a year
  • General Admission is $12 for adults and $3 for children ages 5-12. This ticket option includes admission to the gardens (including Hammock Hollow Children’s Garden), Pine Ridge Nature Trail, Preserve Trail and the Visitor Center complex.
  • Parking is free and plentiful.
  • Allow for plenty of time to explore. (2-5 hours)
  • The Singing Tower concerts are at 1 and 3 p.m. daily, there is a viewing spot to sit and watch. You can hear the bells throughout the Gardens, it is so enchanting.
  • There are two Cafes on property serving a variety of items from sandwiches to ice cream. We dined here and enjoyed the food and ice cream!
  • There are designated picnic areas if you would like to bring your own food.
  • If traveling with babies or toddlers, you may want to bring a stroller or rent one from the Visitor Center.  They do offer a golf cart “shuttle” which we were grateful for on the way back from the Pine Estates.
  • Dress comfortably, bring sunscreen and a towel (to dry off the kids from Hammock Hollow fun)

 If you are a planning a Central Florida vacation check out How to Maximize 1 Day at LEGOLAND Florida and Take Your Kids on a Safari.