So Much To Do During Your Visit

The moment you enter Fairchild you are transported to the tropics. Sweet fragrances wafting in the warm breezes will remind you of dreams of paradise. Walk under the exotic Vine Pergola with dozens of beautiful flowering vines including ones with sky-blue or jade-green and even candy corn-hued flowers. Visit the Tropical Flowering Tree Arboretum to discover the allspice tree with quilted leaves smelling of the warm spice. Walk along the Lougheed Spiny Forest of Madagascar and find yourself in a land of bizarre and beautiful plants. Stroll down the Allée and spend some time at the Overlook where you can see sparkling lakes and islands beyond.  

Find a bench and sit down to read and relax for some peaceful reflection. Explore the Simons Rainforest and find yourself along a rushing stream with surprising waterfalls and petite cascades.  Look up into the canopy of towering trees and see amazing orchids, colorful vines and birds-nest anthuriums growing on the trees! Visit the Montgomery Palmetum to see a tropical world filled with palms of all shapes, textures and sizes. Carefully admire palm trunks covered in spines or with fibers like an intricate weaving. Among the palms you will see plants that appear to be from the time of dinosaurs and they are – the cycads, some of the most ancient plants still found growing on this earth. Some of the cycads produce huge, colorful cones filled with seeds. Other cycads are armed with sharp spines and sturdy trunks.  

Enter the delightful Wings of the Tropics exhibit in The Clinton Family Conservatory and find yourself in a world filled with strikingly colorful butterflies flying to nectar-filled flowers. Be blessed by the soft touch of a curious butterfly landing on your shoulder. Continue into the Tropical Plant Conservatory and Rare Plant House and discover a pool of brightly colored cichlids from tropical Africa as well as Dale Chihuly's End of Day Tower. Admire the cork tree that is covered with orchids, ferns and other tropical jewels. Visit the Whitman Tropical Fruit Pavilion and smell the aroma of ripening tropical fruit. As you leave the conservatories, stroll to the Bailey Palm Glade and gaze upon an iconic vista of majestic palms leading to a beautiful lake. Turn around and look down the Cycad Vista and realize that Fairchild has been planned and planted with incredible care. Nowhere else on earth will you see these amazing plants, incredible vistas and experience the pure tropical ambiance that is Fairchild.

Fairchild is considered one of the best botanic gardens in the world. Our plant collection nestles within the beautiful framework of our landscape design providing an unparalleled sense of awe. Our horticultural collections and exhibits make the experience of visiting Fairchild unforgettable through guided and self-guided tours of the Garden. 

Garden Exhibits and Collections
What's Blooming
Borrow Binoculars
Tram Tours
Discovery Carts
Festivals and Events

Garden Exhibits 

Garden exhibits are not only beautiful, they provide a greater understanding as to the breadth of the tropical world. Visiting Fairchild is a remarkable experience for you and your family. Our exhibits are unique to the tropical world and represent a diversity of plant species unlike any you will experience in the U.S. We encourage you to enjoy these wonderful exhibits during your visit, and please be sure to speak with any of our staff and volunteers who are happy to enrich your experience.

The Uplands 

The uplands is a 23-acre area that features many exhibits and collections. By design, the uplands is more formal than the lowlands and is home to our conservatories, labs, restroom facilities, offices, the Bailey Palm Glade, The Shop at Fairchild, Tram Plaza, and more. The uplands is 14 feet higher in elevation than the lowlands, and sits 17 feet above sea-level.

Wings of the Tropics 
Come enjoy thousands of exotic butterflies along with tropical fish and some of the world's most beautiful rare plants. You will have the opportunity to see exotic butterflies, such as the Blue Morpho, Owl, Bamboo Page, and Leopard Lacewing and many more. There are butterfly releases twice daily, where kids of all ages will have a chance to experience these winged wonders up close. The Wings of the Tropics Exhibit is located in The Clinton Family Conservatory. Learn more...

DiMare Science Village and Hsiao Labs
Be sure to see science in action in the state-of-the-art DiMare Science Village: the scientific hub for tropical botany. Opened in 2012, the DiMare Science Village was designed with interaction in mind. Visitors are encouraged to look inside the labs through large windows and speak with our scientists and volunteers. The science team is happy to share with you all about our various conservation science initiatives. Learn more...

Richard H. Simons Rainforest
Explore the rainforest and get a taste of the tropics as you follow a winding stream through two acres of waterfalls, tropical palms, orchids and lush foliage. This exhibit offers visitors the opportunity to experience the plants and environment of the world's dwindling rainforest ecosystems. Learn more...

Lisa D. Anness South Florida Butterfly Garden
Walk through the Lisa D. Anness South Florida Butterfly Garden and experience more than 40 species of native butterflies fluttering around you as they interact with hundreds of butterfly nectar and larval host plants. Learn more...

Gate House Museum
The Gate House is the Garden's first building. Built in 1938, the Gate House was originally the grounds keeper's residence. The oolite and wood, two-story structure sits on the Garden's main axis, subtly accentuating the neighboring Overlook and Allée. This iconic building has set the architectural aesthetic for the Garden's buildings. Can you see the resemblance in the Shehan Visitor Center, DiMare Science Village, The Glasshouse Cafe and the Rose-McQuillan Arts Building?

Palm and Cycad Collection
Tour through the towering tropical palms and ancient rare cycads of our world-renowned palm and cycad collections with species collected from across the globe by our intrepid plant scientists. There are more than 1,500 palm accessions planted in the garden, and the cycad collection includes representations of many of the world's 315 species and is one of the world's largest and most diverse collections with more than 700 accessioned plants.

Whitman Tropical Fruit Pavilion
The Tropical Fruit Pavilion exhibits some of the rarest tropical fruit trees from throughout the world. Here you can see mangosteen, durian, chocolate, vanilla and much more. Learn more...

The Edible Garden
Experience The Edible Garden and discover numerous easy to grow vegetables and herbs, as well as the best selections of tropical fruit for your garden. Learn how easy it is to put delicious, fresh food on your table with a visit to Fairchild’s Edible Garden. Learn more...

Lougheed Spiny Forest of Madagascar
Discover the wonderful world of succulents in the Spiny Forest of Madagascar which showcases some of the wonderful plants found in Madagascar’s spiny desert ranges that brings attention to the woeful destruction of these natural areas. Learn more...

The Arboretum
The Fairchild Arboretum is a 12-acre display of over 700 species of tropical flowering trees and shrubs collected from all over the world. Arranged by plant family, these collections show a magnificent diversity of form, structure, texture, color and fragrance. 

Vine Pergola and Geiger Tropical Flower Garden
Within the Arboretum is the 700 foot long Vine Pergola, a historic stone and wood structure supporting a dazzling array of tropical flowering vines of every imaginable shape and color. The Geiger Tropical Flower Garden is a display of eye-popping color and fabulous fragrance that is sure to please.

Tropical Plant Conservatory and Rare Plant House
Explore the rare and fabulous as you walk through the Tropical Plant Conservatory and Rare Plant House. Explore the tropical world like never before as you view fantastic blooms, red-trunked palms, massive tree ferns, rare cycads, unusual vines, gorgeous orchids, the Corchid Tree, exotic fish and much more. Learn more...
  
Sibley Victoria Pool
Fairchild is one of the only gardens in the U.S. to feature the Victoria water lilies outdoors. Experience the beauty and magnitude of the world's largest water lily. Learn more...

Allée and Overlook and Bailey Palm Glade
Fairchild's landscape design is carefully planned with family plots. At the Overlook and Allée and the Bailey Palm Glade, the formality of William Lyman Phillips' design culminates with immense beauty and breathtaking views. Be sure to have your cameras ready to capture the seemingly infinite beauty of these vistas. Learn more...

The Lowlands

The Lowlands is a 60-acre area that is home to various exhibits and collections, our lakes, as well as the Lowlands Parking Field and Lowlands Admissions. In this area, you may notice that our exhibits are planted on berms. That's because the Lowlands sit approximately four feet above sea-level. The high-water levels from our summer rains and possible salt-water intrusion from neighboring Biscayne Bay would be damaging to plants that normally thrive in rock-like substrate conditions. By design, the Lowlands is significantly less formal than the Uplands, allowing visitors a more naturalized botanical experience along the paths and wide, open spaces.

Garden Club of America Amphitheater
The Amphitheater is the only formal exhibit within the Lowlands. Surrounded by two lakes and accessible via the famous Land Bridge, this area is a beautiful space. A gift of the Garden Club of America in 1940, the Amphitheater's dais and "in the round" feel act as the perfect setting for in plein-air performances as well as for quiet reflection under one of the many coconut palms in the Lougheed Palm Grove. 

Jewels of the Caribbean
This exhibit is a large portion of the Lowlands with a scientifically important collection of plants, trees and shrubs from the Caribbean, including the Bahama islands. Can you see the similarity between these plants and South Florida's native plant population within the species diversity?

The Keys Coastal Habitat
The Keys Coastal Habitat is a four-acre bird lover’s paradise featuring a densely-planted collection of plants native to South Florida and the Florida Keys. It has been designed to attract migratory birds and other wildlife and is the perfect spot to spy a painted bunting or tiny warbler. Learn more...

Pine Rockland 
At one point, South Florida (including Miami-Dade County) was densely populated by this now highly endangered pine rockland habitat; less than two percent of this habitat remains. As you experience this exhibit, be sure to notice the understory plants that attract many of our native butterflies. Learn more...

Water Gardens
There are 11 lakes and eight water features at Fairchild. Be sure to visit all of them as each has a unique ecology and aquatic theme.

What's Blooming 

Every month, Fairchild's expert horticulture staff and volunteers compile a list of blooming plants so that visitors are sure to see 12-months of blooming plants and trees. The Fairchild Plot Map and the current list of blooming plants can be found at various locations throughout the Garden. 

Borrow Binoculars 

Borrow a pair of binoculars and get a closer look at Fairchild’s birds, butterflies and blooms. You may borrow one pair for a maximum of two hours. Please see the Information Desk at The Shop at Fairchild for more information and availability.

Tram Tours 

Enjoy a free, narrated tram tour with one of our expert volunteer guides. Year-round tram tours run approximately 45 minutes and offer an introduction to the history, mission, and Fairchild's plant collections. The tours give an excellent overview of the Garden, after which you can explore on your own. Each tram is fully accessible for individuals with disabilities. Please note that during special events and/or inclement weather, tram tours are suspended to ensure the safety of our guests.

Tram Tour Schedule

Weekdays, hourly from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Weekends, hourly from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 

Tours en Español
Ofrecemos paseos guiados en el tranvía cada sábado y domingo a las 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m. y 3:30 p.m.

Private Tours of Fairchild
Whether you’re new to Fairchild or a longtime Member, you can deepen your enjoyment of the Garden by taking an exclusive Private Tour. These informative docent-led tours are offered throughout the day and are available for individuals or small groups of up to seven guests in the comfort of our shuttle carts; larger groups are accommodated in our trams. Guests enjoy the Garden’s 83-acres for approximately 1 ½ hours with our expertly-trained and friendly volunteer docents. Afterwards, explore the Garden at your leisure. Lunch or afternoon tea is available at an additional fee.

In order to provide your party with the best experience, we recommend booking your private tour three days prior to your visit. Depending on availability, we may accommodate any day-of bookings.  

Private Tour Pricing (Includes Garden Admission, Garden Exhibits, Wings of the Tropics Exhibit, Special Exhibits, and a Private Tour lasting approximately 1 ½ hours).

Up to groups of  5: $250
Up to groups of 7: $300
Groups larger than 7:  $500 (limit 20 guests)
Member Pricing (up to groups of 7): $125

Book a Private Tour

To book a group larger than 7 guests, please contact us at shop@fairchildgarden.org or 305.667.1651 x 3305 at least 48 hours before your group visit.

 

Self-Guided Tours

Do you prefer self-exploration? Can't make it to one of our guided tours? Then, be sure to discover the Garden on your own using one of our many exploration aids. Our visitor map will guide you to the many sights throughout Fairchild. The Kushlan Bird Trail is another wonderful self-guided experience that will help you discover the birds of Fairchild. Be sure to ask for both of these tour booklets when you arrive. 

 

Guided Walking Tours

Guided walking tours are a great way to enjoy Fairchild more in-depth. Tours are led by Garden Docents who will guide you along the way to many different plants, flowers, birds, butterflies and other wildlife. The content will vary depending on the departure location and interest of the visitors. Please check at the Information Desk at the Shehan Visitor Center upon arrival or call ahead 305.667.1651 ext. 3388 to confirm availability.

Guided Walking Tour Weekday Schedule 

 

Discover the Tropics Walking Tours
This is the perfect tour to learn about the beauty and botany of the tropics. Tours may include the following exhibits: Montgomery Palmetum, Simons Rainforest, Geiger Tropical Flower Garden, Tropical Flowering Tree Arboretum, Sibley Victoria pool, Lougheed Spiny Forest of Madagascar and the historic Vine Pergola

When: November through May 

Time:  10:15 a.m., 11:15 a.m., 1:15 p.m., 2:15 p.m. 
Duration: 45 minutes
Departs: Morning tours depart from Shehan Visitor Center; Afternoon tours depart from Cycad Circle

 

South Florida Butterfly Gardening Walking Tours

Learn about the plants that attract butterflies, birds and other pollinators. You'll also learn best practices for creating a sustainable garden. 

When: Wednesdays, year-round. Please check schedule upon arrival.

Time: 1:30 p.m.
Duration: 45 minutes
Departs: Shehan Visitor Center

Guided Walking Tour Weekend Schedule

 

Early-bird Walks at Fairchild
Discover the diverse avian community in South Florida via the Kushlan Bird Trail at Fairchild.  Join us on Early-bird Walks and explore the best birding spots throughout Fairchild and record your sightings in the global database for birds, eBird. Don’t forget your binoculars! Or, binoculars are available upon request at the South Gate Information Booth.

When: Early-bird Walks will return in Fall 2017
Time: 7:30 - 9:30 a.m.
Departs: South Gate Entrance                              

Butterflies: Winged Wonders and the Plants They Love
This is your opportunity to explore for butterflies in the Garden and identify host and nectar plants. Larval host plants and nectar plants attract free-flying butterflies so you are sure to find at least some of the 45 butterfly species that have been documented at Fairchild.  If you are considering installing a butterfly garden in South Florida, this is a must tour! 

When: Every Saturday and Sunday. Year-round

Time: 10:15 - 11:30 a.m.
Departs: Tram Plaza

 

Sway This Way: The Palms of Fairchild
Fairchild has one of the largest collection of palms in the world, so what better place to learn about these tropical icons. 

When: Selected Saturdays and Sundays. Seasonal. 
Time: 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
Duration: 45 minutes
Departs: Cycad Circle

Exploring the Rainforest
Learn about the importance of rainforest ecology and the critical role of plant, people and animal interactions.

When:  Selected Saturdays and Sundays. Seasonal. 
Time:  11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
Duration: 45 minutes
Departs:  Simons Rainforest Plaza

South Florida Ethnobotany 
Ethnobotany is the cultural and societal usage of plants. During this tour, you will learn how South Florida plants are used in everyday life. 

When: Seasonal
Time: 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
Duration: 45 minutes
Departs: Cycad Circle

Discovery Carts 

Enjoy specially-curated programs each weekend at one of our many Discovery Cart locations. Volunteers are on hand to interact with you on a variety of themes that differ throughout the year. You will learn something new each time you visit the Garden from our highly-trained and friendly volunteers. 

Discovery Cart Weekday Schedule

Butterfly Bonanza 
Interact with our expertly-trained volunteers who will explain the life-cycle and feeding habits of exotic butterflies and moths from all over the tropical world.You will also learn about the unique habitat of the Wings of the Tropics exhibit. 

When: Every day 
Time: 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Where: Wings of the Tropics Exhibit

Discovery Cart Weekend Schedule

Amazing Plants from Far Off Lands
Stroll through the Tropical Plant Conservatory and Rare Plant House, home to some of the tropical world's rarest plants, expertly collected over the past 100 years by Fairchild's scientists and explorers. Friendly and knowledgeable volunteers will guide you on your tour and will share stories about these exceptional plants. 

When:  Year-round. First and third weekend of the month.
Time:  11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Where:  Tropical Plant Conservatory and Rare Plant House

Orchid Odyssey 

Learn about orchids and experience the magic of these long-lusted after plants. You will learn which orchids are best for our South Florida conditions and how to care for their beautiful blooms. 

When: Seasonal. Saturdays and Sundays of March; including the Orchid Festival
Time: 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Where:  Simons Rainforest Plaza and Tropical Plant Conservatory and Rare Plant House

Where Does Chocolate Come From?

Discover the 'fruit of the gods'. During this experience, you will see the cacao tree and its fruit, smell the beans and nibs and learn the "from bean to bar" process.

When:  During the 10th Annual Chocolate Festival - January 22-24, 2016
Time:  9:30 a.m. through 4:30 p.m.
Where:  Simons Rainforest Plaza and Tropical Fruit Pavilion 

Discovering the Rainforest 

Through conversations and interactive games, learn about the diversity, ethnobotany and plant-animal interaction of a rainforest habitat. You will also learn how you can help conserve these critical and amazing habitat.  

When: Seasonal. Saturdays and Sundays in August
Time: 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Where: Simons Rainforest Plaza

Attracting Wildlife to Your Garden
Create a safe haven in your own backyard for wildlife by providing the perfect habitat for butterflies, birds and other pollinators. You'll also learn best practices for creating a sustainable garden. 
When:  Seasonal. April and May
Time: 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Where: Lisa D. Anness South Florida Butterfly Garden

 

The Incredible Edible Garden

Learn the top tips and tricks for creating and maintaining your very own South Florida edible garden at home.

When:   Seasonal
Time:    11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Where:  The Edible Garden

 

Festivals and Events

Throughout the year, there are a number of events, such as festivals, concerts, plant shows and sales, art exhibits, and seasonal brunches and teas