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Posted By Robin & Jim

Christmas in Victoria wouldn't be complete without a visit to the famous Butchart Gardens.  We visited the gardens by boat in early summer, and were astounded at the size and variety: an Italian formal garden, a Japanese garden, an amazing rose garden, and the huge sunken garden.  There are things to see in every season, even in winter when little touches like a small owl totem are easier to notice.  Locals recommended that we get an annual pass so we could visit the gardens as often as we liked, especially around Christmas.

butchart sleigh

We had heard about all the lights, but we wanted to see the gardens before it got dark.  The sunken garden is a favorite area, with a meandering path, cliff sides, a pond, and a small waterfall all surrounded by tall evergreen trees.  Here's what it looks like in winter during daylight hours - pretty, but without the explosion of color that you would see in the other seasons.

sunken garden before

And here is the view of the sunken garden at night...

sunken garden after

The theme throughout all the gardens was the 12 Days of Christmas, which you begin to discover as you walk around.  We saw the tree with sparkly pear ornaments... and there was a partridge sitting in it.  The two turtle doves were in a small cage... but the three French hens had a bit of whimsy...

3 french hens

I won't bore you with the rendering of the entire song, but we almost missed the four calling birds.  We saw this little grouping of birds - a cockatoo, parrots, and macaw with cell phones and didn't make the mental connection until a little later.

calling birds

We just loved it - lots of creativity, cleverness, and humor.  We were warned that the last element could only be seen as you drive away at the end of the evening... the drummers were animated in lights and there really were 12 of them arching over the driveway.  If you EVER get a chance to visit Butchart Gardens at any time of the year you must do it, but to see it at Christmas is the best. 

We were dressed warmly, but it still got cold after a while, so we took a break and had some dinner, then went back outside to hear the carolers and the brass quartet playing holiday music. 

butchart brass

I think it was most fun watching little children so excited, with their rosy cheeks and smiling faces.  Christmas is about being a kid, no matter how big or how old you are.

We wish you all a very Happy Holiday season and a Joyous New Year.


 
1 Comment(s):
JIm & Cathy said...
Merry Christmas you two!! Hope the new heating system is keeping your tootsies all nice & cozy.
December 24, 2013 11:13 AM
 
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