Vancouver Summer Gardens: Queen Elizabeth Park

Flower bed at Queen Elizabeth Park. Photo by Dana Lynch

I often think that, given all the hype Vancouver beaches get every summer (rightly so—our beaches are amazing), people forget about our other, equally gorgeous outdoor spaces: Vancouver’s gardens.

I know I’m not alone in loving Vancouver’s gardens; they attract millions of visitors every year. And summer is the time to visit: the weather is better and seeing everything in bloom is just magical.

Last summer, I wrote about how much I love the VanDusen Botanical Garden (see pictures here). So this time, I thought I’d write about my favourite free garden: the Quarry Gardens at Queen Elizabeth Park.


Queen Elizabeth Park's Main Quarry Garden

The Queen Elizabeth Quarry Gardens are two exquisite gardens just below the peak of Queen Elizabeth Park (the highest point in Vancouver) and just steps from the Bloedel Floral Conservatory. The larger of the two is the Main Quarry Garden; the smaller is the North Quarry Garden (located under the Seasons in the Park Restaurant).


Stream running through the North Quarry Garden

Both gardens are little havens of perfection, with lots of planted perennial and annual flower beds, dainty streams and ponds, winding pathways and charming bridges. Given the area’s horticultural beauty, it’s practically impossible to imagine it in its original incarnation: a basalt rock quarry (hence the name) that provided the foundation rock for many of Vancouver’s earliest roads.


Main Quarry Garden, Queen Elizabeth Park

I love visiting the Quarry Gardens in the summer—I love visiting the whole of Queen Elizabeth Park—but I especially love bringing visiting friends and family to the gardens: they’re always amazed that this is a free, public park!

Love Vancouver’s gardens as much as I do? Which is your favourite garden?

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