Bok Tower Gardens, Lake Wales

4.7
#1 of 16 in Things to do in Lake Wales
On the National Register of Historic Places, Bok Tower Gardens sits atop one of central Florida's highest points. Spanning nearly 100 hectares (250 acres), this site features winding paths and secluded clearings. The Singing Tower, a 62 m (205 ft) tall Gothic-Art Deco structure, features a carillon with 60 large bells. You can wander through the gardens to find many varieties of blooming flowers, endangered plants, and tranquil pools, many designed by famous landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. While in the park, keep your eyes open for the 126 different bird species, as well as tortoises and snakes, which call the gardens home. Make Bok Tower Gardens a part of your Lake Wales vacation plans using our Lake Wales attractions planner .
Create an itinerary including Bok Tower Gardens
map
Bok Tower Gardens Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
1,827 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • We completely enjoyed our visit. If I lived in central Florida, this would be my happy place. We didn't tour the house as we only had a couple of hours and wanted to relax in the gardens and photograp...  more »
  • A plesent escape from the commercialism of Orlando, and a chance to learn about the Carillon, something you have never thought about before. Simply stated it is like an organ made up of bells at the t...  more »
  • I've lived in FL for the past 13 years and this was my first visit to Bok Tower Gardens, it won't be my last. We had a wonderful experience touring the Pinewood Estate decorated for the holidays and t...  more »
Google
  • The gardens are beautiful. The carillon bells are so soothing. Walking through the manicured grounds while listening to the relaxing concert made for a memorable afternoon. Even on an overcast, dreary day! Then we visited the mansion in all of its Christmas glory. The period decorations were so interesting as was the architecture of the home. Volunteers were knowledgeable and friendly, ready to offer interesting information and narratives of the residents from the past. My family and I will be back in the spring to see the grounds and the mansion again.
  • My boyfriend and I (both big plant enthusiasts) visit Bok Tower Gardens at least once each year. If we lived closer, we would definitely consider membership! A great place to take people of all ages. The new children's garden area is very well done. Even as an adult, I enjoy walking around that area and seeing all the fun activities they have for kids. If you're only able to go once, I recommend going during the holiday tours where you are able to visit the estate and see the mansion decorated for the holidays. The grounds are beautiful, the holiday decorations will warm your heart, and the volunteers and staff are extremely welcoming and knowledgeable. Make sure to save room for a snack because the cafe is delicious! Everything from the coffee to the ice cream is top-notch.
  • Beautiful gardens, well maintained and a huge, fun children's area. The singing tower is totally unique and surrounded by Koi ponds. Also the performer will sometimes do a question and answer after the last performance. The house tour is definitely worth the extra cost (and it's air conditioned) especially if you like old houses. And you can watch a cooking lesson in the large outdoor kitchen stage, so much to see and experience in a single day.
  • This is a beautiful gardens. It's small enough that you could walk it in a few hours, and big enough you could spend a full day here if you wanted to. I will say I didn't see quite the variety of flora that I was expecting, but the grounds are beautifully maintained, and are accessible via well graded dirt or paved paths. Somebody with a walker or a wheelchair should not have too much difficulty here, plus they also offer a 'shuttle' service to certain locations. We took my parents, and my two kids here, and even my kids were okay with it for the two and a half to three hours we were here. I don't think they would have enjoyed it if we spent 4 plus hours here though. The cafeteria had some really good food, and the pricing was very inexpensive for the food. That's a definite plus. If you happen to be visiting the house of mouse in Orlando, it's about an hour to an hour and 10 minutes to get here. The house is less exciting to visit during a non holiday season, but during the various holidays they do decorate it with a theme, and we think it's worth it to visit during those times, especially during Christmas. Access to/theough the house is limited, and won't be easy for somebody who may need some assistance.
  • One of my favorite places I have ever been. My family moved to Florida when I was 11, and my parents got an annual membership to Bok Tower Garden. It was so beatiful, and relaxing. So many different little forms of wildlife, so much history, and so many beautiful plants. I am now 41, and still go sometimes. Granted it has changed some over the years, it is still as grand and wonderful, and I enjoy it just as much as when I was a child. I recommend it to anyone who steps foot in Florida! The cafe has delicious food, there is a beautiful gift shop, there is carillon music played throughout the day, and they have a wondrous calendar of events. They also have wheel chairs available to use as a convenience to those who need them, and they have trams that ride around who will gladly give you a lift if you need one in order to get to other points of the park.

Plan your trip to Lake Wales

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in Lake Wales

From river resorts with a wacky vibe to elegant bed and breakfasts, Lake Wales has an assortment of lodging options. Along the road from Winter Haven to Lake Wales are many large hotel chains that service both towns. Many of these offer last-minute accommodations to travelers along the road.
Live like a local, find unique places to stay
Millions of travel reviews on TripAdvisor

Plans in Lake Wales by other users

7 days in Central Florida BY A USER FROM CANADA March, popular PREFERENCES: March ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Lake Wales BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES March, popular PREFERENCES: March ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 27 days in Central Florida BY A USER FROM NETHERLANDS January, relaxing, popular PREFERENCES: January, relaxing ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Lake Wales BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES March, popular PREFERENCES: March ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 6 days in Florida BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: February ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 3 days in Lake Wales BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES January, popular PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Lake Wales BY A USER FROM INDONESIA March, popular PREFERENCES: March ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 30 days in Central Florida BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM June, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 14 days in Central Florida, St. Augustine & Daytona Beach BY A USER FROM NORWAY January, popular PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 2 days in Lake Wales BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 21 days in Central Florida BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM December, popular PREFERENCES: December ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 15 days in Central Florida BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM August, kids, popular PREFERENCES: August, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans