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Bok Tower Gardens named one of the best “Secret Spots” in Florida

Bok Tower Gardens has offered some of Florida’s most remarkable experiences to visitors since 1929.

Bok Tower Gardens

Southern Living has revealed a list of the top “secret spots” to visit in Florida. One of the top spots on the list is Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales, a not-so-secret experiences that has captivated more than 23 million visitors since 1929.

Bok Tower Gardens, located at 1151 Tower Blvd, Lake Wales, and about a 60 minute drive from Orlando is home to the lush landscapes of the Olmsted gardens and the music of the Singing Tower carillon.

Listed on the "secret list" at number two in a list of twenty locations, Bok Tower Gardens is described by Southern Living as being unique for many reasons, namely because it was designed by famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., and "because it is home to an eight-story structure called the Singing Tower. Inside the tower is a carillon, a rare instrument that contains at least 23 specially tuned bells that are played with a keyboard. There is so much to explore here, from seasonally blooming flowers to a 1930s-era Spanish-style mansion to nature trails."

Bok Tower Gardens

Bok Tower Gardens boasts one of the greatest works of famed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. The meandering, historic landscape garden was designed to be a contemplative and informal woodland setting offering a series of romantic recesses and tranquil resting spots, picturesque vistas and breathtaking views of the Singing Tower.

Acres of ferns, palms, oaks and pines fashion a lush backdrop for flowering foliage and the spectacular seasonal color of azaleas, camellias and magnolias, showcasing an ever-changing work of art.

One of the wonderful attributes of the Gardens and natural habitats is its wildlife population. It includes 126 different species of birds as well as the threatened gopher tortoise and endangered eastern indigo snake. The grounds of Bok Tower Gardens is a designated site on the Great Florida Birding Trail.

The Gardens consist of paved primary pathways and many mulched secondary paths, some of which have an incline. There are two main pathways that lead into the core Gardens, and many routes to choose in making your way to the Singing Tower.

The Singing Tower Carillon is an instrument of tuned bells in chromatic series. Cast from bronze, which is composed mainly of copper and tin, and then specially tuned. The bells are “hung dead” meaning that the bells do not swing, only the clappers move. The instrument is fully mechanical (there are no electronics).

The carillon is played using a clavier (keyboard) that allows expressiveness through variation in touch, similar to a piano, using both the hands (in a lightly closed fist) and feet. The keyboard is connected through a series of wires and levers to each clapper which strikes inside of the bell, causing it to ring out.

Bok Tower Gardens is open daily from 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., with last admission at 5:00 p.m.

The Gardens will be closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. The Visitor Center, Blue Palmetto Cafe, and Shop at Bok are open daily from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Adult general admission is $20, Children $10 (ages 6-17), children 5 and under are free, Dogs are $10.

For more information, and to book tickets to Bok Tower Gardens, click here.

Have you visited the "secret' Bok Tower Gardens? Let us know in the comments below.

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Bok Tower Gardens


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