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I went to the Botanical Garden on my own the last time I was in Dominica (2011), and I must admit, I wish I had dedicated more time to leisurely tour it.
First of all, it is larger than most other botanical gardens in the Caribbean, so you need more time to fully appreciate it. You can walk to it from the cruise dock.
I remember seeing quite a few hiking trails, but since I went there later in the afternoon, I didn't get a chance to complete any of them, because I wanted to see other things in town. If you're really into walking/botanicals, you should probably block out at least an entire morning so you can thoroughly explore this beautiful property
Yes, I have photos SOMEWHERE, but not sure which memory card! I usually don't post my photos online.
I have read good things about both gardens. Has anyone been to either and what is your impression?
I have been to both and they are really totally different experiences. Papillote Gardens is a fairly small 4 acre portion of Papillotte resort. You will need to take a cab to get to it. But you can have lunch in their restaurant if you contact them ahead of time. They do have hot springs onsite also but I am not sure how they handle visitor usage - you will need to contact them to see if you can have access when you visit.
The Botanical Gardens on the other hand is 40 acres and will of course take much longer to take in. You can walk to the gardens from Roseau if you dock there. You can get more info here - http://da-academy.org/dagardens.html
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the botanical gardens is not what i think of when i think of a garden...it is a lot of open space and some nice trees, a squished school bus, and a parrot habitat. but, i think flowers when i think of a tropical island "garden." i don't remember ever seeing a bunch of flowers there. i was hoping to get to papillote this trip, but 12 days just wasn't enough! so, that is on the list for "next time" along with all the other places we just didn't get.
the botanical gardens is not what i think of when i think of a garden...it is a lot of open space and some nice trees, a squished school bus, and a parrot habitat. but, i think flowers when i think of a tropical island "garden." i don't remember ever seeing a bunch of flowers there. .
Our tour just drove us through it really slow and I'm glad that was it - very underwhelming.