Rochester is surrounded by exquisitely manicured gardens and conservatories. If you haven’t already, start with a visit to these five beautiful gardens near Rochester — they will not disappoint! They offer visitors a variety of plants and trees to observe through the seasons, and to take solace among. And many of these are either free or require a small donation or admission fee.
1. Sonnenberg Gardens
Some of the places you can explore, like the Tea Garden and the Rock Garden, are accessed by windy, uneven footpaths. There are also trams available that can take you anywhere in the park, but are especially useful getting from the entrance to the mansion and back. The drivers are excited to share details and stories as you drive along.
2. Lamberton Conservatory
Exhibits is the Seasonal Display House are changed five times throughout the year. Each December, the Holiday Show welcomes you with holiday lights, greens and poinsettias. The Spring Show opens around the 1st weekend of spring through the Lilac Festival in May. They feature hyacinth, daffodils, and tulips; the color and aroma make for a welcome retreat from winter!
3. George Eastman Museum
The grounds are open to the public for free, with exception during special events, like Garden Vibes.
4. Ellwanger Estate Garden
While the Ellwanger Estate is private, the garden is maintained by the Landmark Society and is periodically open to the public for special events.
5. Cornell Botanic Gardens
The 4,000-acres that make up Cornell Botanic Gardens are free to explore and are full of opportunities to learn about plants and environmental conservation.