Cleveland Botanical Garden
Plants and flowers of all kinds fill the Cleveland Botanical Garden. And, while you can explore acres and acres of outdoor gardens, CBG offers two climate-controlled glasshouses – a great escape from the chilliness of wintertime. Inside these glasshouses, you’ll find exotic plants and animals from other-worldly landscapes.
Visitors start in a glasshouse dedicated to the spiny desert of Madagascar. It’s dry in here. You’ll see alien-looking Baobab trees, spiny succulents and Sam, the free-roaming chameleon. Check out his Lobster Boy hands and googly eye sockets.
Next, the Costa Rican Rainforest house is filled with lush greenery, including a colossal strangler fig and avocado, coffee, papaya and chocolate trees. Keep an eye out for their fruit. Stand still for a bit, and one of the many butterflies floating around might rest on your head or sleeve.
Outside are 10 acres of gardens, including the Japanese, herb, rose, and topiary gardens, among others.
Kids helped design the outdoor Hershey Children’s Garden, perhaps explaining its popularity. There’s a treehouse, hidden paths winding through tall grasses, and a spurting fountain that blows mist. Many of the plants in this area attract native caterpillars, butterflies and birds, so there’s a good chance for close encounters.
In the spring, the garden hosts OrchidMania. And each fall and winter, the garden hosts Glow, a holiday event that includes festive lights, live music and family fun.