Arts & Culture

Bok Tower Gardens

Bok Tower Gardens is truly a place of historic beauty and serenity. Among the rolling hills of citrus in Lake Wales, Bok Tower Gardens continues to be one of the most remarkable and awe-inspiring landmarks in Central Florida.

New at Bok Tower Gardens

A Gift from Edward W. Bok

This breathtaking gem has been enchanting those enjoying a Central Florida vacation for over 80 years because founder Edward W. Bok did not settle for anything less than amazing when he created this masterpiece. Bok immigrated to the United States when he was only six years old from Den Helder, Netherlands.

After striving to lead a successful life, Bok became a Pulitzer-Prize winning author along with completing many other noteworthy achievements. He retreated from Pennsylvania to Lake Wales, Florida during the frigid winter months, and during this time, he fell in love with the sunsets, birds, and hills of this area.

Bok Tower Gardens
Bok Tower Gardens

With a vision of creating a beautiful place to inspire others and touch hearts, Edward Bok worked alongside landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. to produce a Singing Tower, the gardens, reflection pool and more. In 1929, he presented these gifts to America as a way of expressing his gratitude for the many opportunities this country had presented him.

Stop and Smell The Flowers

What makes The Gardens so unique is its ability to produce a different experience for people each time they visit Central Florida. No two days at Bok Tower Gardens are the same due to the ever-changing environment and the seasonal blooms for each special plant. From Giant Victoria Water Lilies spreading up to eight feet in diameter, to the stunning Japanese stone peace lantern, Bok Tower Gardens really knows how to steal the show in Central Florida.

Bok Tower Gardens
Bok Tower Gardens

Singing Tower Carillon & Pinewood Estate

One of the most exceptional attributes to Bok Tower Gardens can be found right at its core - a 60-bell, 205-foot Singing Tower Carillon. This majestic Carillon plays 30-minute bell concerts each day at 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. - a brief, but fulfilling bit of your visit that would be a shame to miss. 

The Pinewood Estate is open daily for self-guided tours. This 20-room Mediterranean-style mansion is sure to please. And once hunger strikes, the Blue Palmetto Café is only steps away, always serving up delicious farm-fresh food.

For even more things to do, drop by the Visitor’s Center to learn about the area’s diverse history, and pick up maps of the gardens including the Pine Ridge Nature Trail and Preserve Trail. 

Poster Image for Bok Tower Gardens Hammock Hollow Children's Garden

Hammock Hollow Children's Garden

Featuring almost three acres of nature play, Hammock Hollow Children's Garden teaches conservation and the vital connection between animals, plants, and people. There is beautiful art, cooling water features, vibrant plantings, a boardwalk, a stage for little performers, and music area. Kids have things to climb on, under and through, as well as places to build, dig and create.

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Poster Image for Bok Tower Gardens Outdoor Kitchen and Edible Garden

Outdoor Kitchen & Edible Garden

Located adjacent to the Visitors Center, this new area offers a modern design in harmony with the landscape and allows guests to enjoy a celebration of fresh food and culinary programming. The Kitchen is 6,400 square feet and features more than 15 feet of space for chef demonstrations. 

The Edible Garden surrounds the Outdoor Kitchen and features a fruit orchard, grape arbors, and raised beds for herbs and vegetables. This area is a hub of horticultural and culinary activity and will showcase lifestyle gardening and the culinary arts.

Read all about the new garden on our blog at Outdoor Kitchen & Edible Garden

Bok Tower Gardens Christmas Events
Bok Tower Gardens Christmas Events

Christmas at Bok Tower Gardens

There is never a dull moment in The Gardens, and each Christmas season is proof. Each year, a new theme is set for Christmas at Bok Tower Gardens, making it the perfect family tradition for Holiday lovers and nature fans alike. Decorations, classical Christmas music, and poinsettia displays upstage the area during this time of the year. Bok Tower Gardens offers a chorale concert, decorating workshops, a holiday happy hour, and a night tour of the Estate (including cookies and hot chocolate-yum!).

The highlight of the season is the Holiday Home Tour at Pinewood Estate. Volunteers and sponsored designers take time to decorate the mansion to ensure a touching holiday experience for all visitors. What a pleasant alternative to the hectic holiday season!

Events You Won’t Want to Miss

Bok Tower Gardens
Bok Tower Gardens

Peak Bloom

February and March mean the ever-anticipated Peak Bloom at Bok Tower Gardens is back in action. Azaleas, irises, camellias and many other colorful flowering plants are presented in a colorful parade down the serene walking paths. Guests are encouraged to take plenty of photographs to preserve their precious Central Florida vacation memories.

ROOTSTOCK Plant and Garden Festival

Every October, unique and native plants are celebrated during a special event at Bok Tower Gardens. Plants from all over Florida combine to fill the gardens with even MORE natural beauty than it already has during ROOTSTOCK Plant and Garden Festival, formerly Boktoberfest Plant Sale & Festival. Hard-to-find shrubs, ferns, palms, tropical fruits, trees, orchids, etc. are available for pleasure or for purchase during this outdoor two-day event. You can even touch-up your gardening skills with educational workshops and speeches by garden experts. 

Summer Concert Series

Chill out during your summertime Central Florida vacation with great music and savory food. In summer, Bok Tower Gardens hosts a concert series of live music inside the visitor’s center. You may add dinner to your concert ticket and enjoy the fresh food of the Blue Palmetto Café. But be warned, tickets sell out quickly due to the popularity of this impressive musical event.

You may also be interested in Lake Wales Museum & Cultural CenterPolk State Lake Wales Arts Center, or Crazy Fish Bar and Grill.

Address / Location

1151 Tower Blvd
Lake Wales, FL 33853
Get Directions

Contact Info

Visit Website
info@boktower.org
863-676-1408

Hours of Operation

Daily 8:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Next Event

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Reviews

5 Star Rating

This was a nice getaway from all the crazy parks. Time your visit so you can hear the chimes (approx 20-30 minutes). The botanicals were interesting too. There is a great kids part of the park that... Read Full Review

5 Star Rating

This is one of the coolest places I have ever been. There is a lot to see and do. We joined their membership program the first time we visited and we can't wait to go back.It's very peaceful on top... Read Full Review

5 Star Rating

My wife, daughter, granddaughter and future son-in-law visited the gardens. Simply beautiful. Dr. Watson Read Full Review

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