From the historical Mughal gardens to the modern botanical gardens, there are so many types of gardens in India. Each one carries its own unique charm.
Who doesn’t like walking through a beautiful garden? It’s a refreshing retreat from the mundane, everyday life. Here, we take a look at the 15 of the most spectacular gardens in India.
A Quick Glance Through
- Brindavan Gardens, Mysore
- Tulip Garden, Srinagar
- Rock Garden, Chandigarh
- Shalimar Bagh, Srinagar
- Mehtab Bagh, Agra
- Government Botanical Gardens, Ooty
- Valley of Flowers, Chamoli
- Yadavindra Gardens, Pinjore
- Lalbagh Botanical Garden, Bengaluru
- Mughal Gardens, Delhi
- Nishat Bagh, Srinagar
- Lady Hydari Park, Shillong
- Cubbon Park, Bengaluru
- Eco Park, Kolkata
- Zakir Hussain Rose Garden, Chandigarh
1. Brindavan Gardens, Mysore
Sprawling 60 acres within the Krishnaraja Sagar dam (KRS dam) complex, Brindavan gardens is about 21 km from Mysore city. The dam complex forms a part of Mandya district in Karnataka.
KRS dam was constructed by Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV across the river Kaveri, one of the prominent Indian rivers.
In order to beautify the area around the dam, the then diwan of the kingdom of Mysore, Sir Mirza Ismail founded this garden. Conceptualised by him in 1927, it took 5 years to fully build the garden.
Brindavan Gardens is renowned as one of the best terrace gardens in India. It is inspired by the Lalbagh Botanical garden in Bengaluru.
You may also like: Top 10 Tourist Places in Mysore to Visit.
2. Tulip Garden, Srinagar
Set against the backdrop of scenic Dal Lake, Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip garden is one of its kind in India. It is located on the foothills of Zabarwan Range in Srinagar.
It is renowned as the largest tulip garden in Asia, spread over a whopping 75 acres. The garden was opened for tourists and the public at large in 2007.
This excellently landscaped garden comprises seven terraces with bright multi-coloured tulip flowers. Besides tulip, Hyacinths, daffodils and ranunculus flowers also add to the splendour of the garden.
One of the major highlights of the tulip garden is the annual Tulip Festival, organised during the month of April. It is attended by thousands of travelers and flower lovers. A wide range of tulip flowers is showcased during the festival.
Plan your visit during the spring season to adore this enchanting beauty of Kashmir valley. The garden is conveniently reachable from Srinagar by a cab. It is about 8 km from Lalchowk Srinagar. The nearest railway station and airport are in Srinagar.
3. Rock Garden, Chandigarh
Amidst the bustling city of Chandigarh, lies a uniquely laid-out sculpture garden. The 40-acre rock garden of Chandigarh is one of the best eco-gardens in India.
Thousands of sculptures built from waste materials and scrap are a major draw for visitors. The sprawling garden comprises courtyards, man-made waterfalls, pavilions, neat walkways and an open-air theatre.
Nek Chand Saini, a humble transport official and a self-taught artist, was the brains behind the rock garden. He conceived and secretly worked on this garden in his free time for almost 10 years until it was discovered by the city authorities in 1975.
This was found to be an illegal construction built on a parcel of government land. After much deliberation, the construction was made legal and the garden was allowed to be opened for the public.
Since then, Nek Chand’s creation has grown from a 12-acre complex to a 40-acre garden kingdom. A walkthrough of this garden reflects the artistic imagination and passion of the creator.
This quaint garden must feature in your itinerary if you are visiting Chandigarh. The rock garden is located 7 km away from Chandigarh railway station and is nearly 15 minutes drive.
4. Shalimar Bagh, Srinagar
The largest Mughal garden of Kashmir, Shalimar Bagh lies along the shoreline of Dal Lake. It was laid out by Mughal emperor Jahangir for his queen Noor Jahan.
Shalimar garden is also known as Farah Baksh and Faiz Baksh. The layout of this 31-acre garden is inspired by Persian (Iranian) gardens.
It comprises three terraces dotted with pretty flowers. The outer part of the garden, referred to as Diwan-e-Aam, was open to the public.
In the center of the garden was the Diwan-e-Khas, accessible to the guests of the court. The third terrace was meant for women from the royal family.
Shalimar Bagh is indeed one of the most beautiful Mughal gardens in India. Encompassed by the tall trees of Chinar, this garden offers breathtaking views of the Dal Lake. It is a 25-minute drive from Lal Chowk (15 km) in Srinagar.
5. Mehtab Bagh, Agra
Nestled in the Taj Mahal complex in Agra, Mehtab Bagh is one of the most fascinating Mughal gardens in India. Mehtab Bagh in Urdu literally translates to ‘moonlight garden’.
The square-shaped garden, built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, presents a stunning view of the Taj Mahal. It measures 980 ft in length and breadth and is fully aligned with the width of the Taj Mahal.
The garden is adorned with fountains, pools, vast pavilions and white plaster pathways. Owing to frequent flash floods and the extraction of building materials from the site, it almost got ruined at one point in time.
So, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) took over and began the restoration work in 1990. Today’s Mehtab Bagh is the restored garden, wherein the Mughal-era ambiance has been recreated by the ASI.
It is a 243 km drive by car from Delhi to the Taj Mahal complex. Agra Cantt is the nearest railway station, located at a distance of 6 km.
6. Government Botanical Gardens, Ooty
Nestled on the lower Doddabetta peak, The Government Botanical Garden in Ooty is one of the beautifully landscaped gardens in India.
The garden was laid out in British India in the year 1848. William Graham McIvor, a Scottish gardener, was the architect of this Ooty garden.
Spanning 55 acres, this vast garden is segregated into six parts. Lower Garden, Italian Garden, New Garden, Conservatory, Fountain Terrace and Nurseries are the six different sections.
The major highlight of the Lower Garden is the map of the Indian Union made up of various plants. Italian Garden was laid out during World War I by the Italian prisoners.
The New Garden is the recently added section that comprises a rose garden, well-crafted flower beds and emblems of the Government of India and the Government of Tamilnadu. In 1912, the public conservatory was built for the purpose of grouping many flowering plants.
Nurseries have glasshouses for the purpose of breeding and growing exotic species of plants, such as ferns, cacti and orchids. A visit to this garden gives a wonderful opportunity to experience both exotic and local plant life.
Ooty is connected to Mettupalayam by meter gauge train. Coimbatore is the nearest major railway station.
7. Valley of Flowers, Chamoli
Tucked away in the majestic Himalayan Ranges in Uttarakhand, the Valley of Flowers is one of the most beautiful gardens in India. It wasn’t known to the world until a great explorer and mountaineer Frank S Smith discovered this alpine valley in 1937.
Sprawling 87 sq km in Chamoli district, Valley of Flowers is also a World Heritage Site. Despite harsh climatic conditions, a host of beautiful flowers adorn this high altitude valley.
The valley is intersected by the Pushpawati river that emerges from the nearby glaciers. Dotted with glinting glaciers, cascading streams and flowery meadows, this valley garden is a visual treat for nature lovers and trekkers.
Owing to the rich biodiversity and wildlife in this area, it was declared as a national park in 1982. And, the park is widely known for some exquisite forms of wildlife including Himalayan weasel, red fox and snow leopards.
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In order to reach here, you need to trek for almost 16 km beginning from Govindghat. The motorable road ends at Govindghat.
Rishikesh is the nearest railway station, about 273 km from Govindghat. Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun serves as the nearest airport. Govindghat is nearly 292 km away from Dehradun airport.
8. Yadavindra Gardens, Pinjore
Yadavindra Gardens, one of the most magnificent Mughal gardens in India, dates back to the 17th century. Spread over 100 acres, the garden is nestled in Pinjore city of Haryana. It is also referred to as Pinjore gardens.
Mughal ruler Aurangzeb built this garden as a summer retreat for himself. The architectural landscaping of the garden was done by Nawab Fidai Khan, who was the foster brother of Aurangzeb.
During the 19th century British India, the King of Patiala owned this parcel of land. It was used for growing roses to make perfumes for the king.
The garden was eventually restored to its former glory by king Yadavindra Singh of the princely state of Patiala. In his honour, the garden was renamed Yadavindra Garden.
Shish Mahal, a Rajasthani–Mughal style palace is situated at the highest terrace. There is Rang Mahal on the second terrace and Jal mahal with fountains on the third terrace.
It also contains an open-air theatre on one of the terraces. At night, the illuminated complex offers awe-inspiring views of the monuments and the garden.
A heritage train ride through the complex is the best way to explore this beautiful garden. The garden also hosts the famous Pinjore Baisakhi festival in the month of April. It is easily accessible from Chandigarh (22 km) by road.
9. Lalbagh Botanical Garden, Bengaluru
A vast expanse of green covering 240 acres, Lalbagh Botanical garden provides much-needed breathing space to the bustling city of Bengaluru.
The garden was originally created by Hyder Ali, who ruled the Kingdom of Mysore during the 18th century. His son Tipu Sultan expanded and beautified it on the lines of the Mughal gardens of Kashmir.
With an assortment of rare and exotic plants on display, Lalbagh is one of the most spectacular gardens in India.
A huge glass conservatory and a 3000 million-year-old large granite rock are major attractions of the park. The granite rock, also known as Lalbagh rock, is a geological monument.
It is also famous for hosting two annual flower shows, on the occasion of Republic Day and Independence Day.
A walkthrough of this picturesque garden provides an opportunity to immerse yourself into the pure beauty of nature. You can buy saplings from the Garden center situated in the park.
Lalbagh metro station serves as the nearest metro station to the garden. Government buses also ply from other parts of the city to this garden.
10. Mughal Gardens, Delhi
Within the boundaries of Rashtrapati Bhawan (official residence of President of India) in Delhi, lies the iconic 15-acre Mughal garden. It is architecturally inspired by the Mughal gardens of Srinagar and Mehtab Bagh of Agra.
The garden is opened for the public during the annual festival Udyanotsav that is held in the months of February-March.
Teeming with more than 150 varieties of roses, it is undoubtedly one of the most magnificent gardens in India. Aside from roses, flowers like tulips, hyacinth, daffodils and lilies also adorn this garden complex.
A nice stroll in this garden during pleasant winters of Delhi, feels absolutely rejuvenating. Central Secretariat Metro Station is the nearest metro station for Mughal Gardens.
You can visit this garden as a direct walk-in (offline) visitor or book a ticket online. Tickets can be booked seven days in advance. Here is the link – online ticket for Delhi’s Mughal garden.
11. Nishat Bagh, Srinagar
Nestled on the eastern bank of the Dal Lake, the 46-acre Nishat Bagh is the largest Mughal garden in the Kashmir valley.
The garden was planned and built in 1633 by Asaf Khan, the prime minister and father-in-law of Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. He was highly impressed by the splendour of this vast garden. The architecture of Nishat Bagh is influenced by Persian gardens.
One of the prime highlights of the garden is the twelve terraces that represent the twelve zodiac signs. Surrounded by the majestic Chinar and Cypress trees along the shoreline, Nishat Bagh is one of the most impressive Mughal gardens in India.
This garden is almost 11 km from Lal Chowk in Srinagar and 25 km from Srinagar airport.
12. Lady Hydari Park, Shillong
Located right in the center of Shillong city is a Japanese-style garden, known as Lady Hydari Park. A beautiful stretch of flower beds and fountains catch your attention, as soon as you enter the garden.
It is named after the wife of the former governor of Assam and the erstwhile first lady of the state, Lady Hydari. The park boasts a beautiful landscape replete with colourful flowers, willow trees and tiny ponds. A leisurely walk through this lovely garden is sheer joy for nature lovers.
The park is merely 2 km from Police Bazar, the major market of Shillong city. You can hire a taxi or an auto-rickshaw to reach there.
You may also like: 12 Most Enchanting Tourist Places in Shillong
13. Cubbon Park, Bengaluru
Cubbon Park is a 300-acre green space in the heart of Bengaluru city. It is popularly also called the “lung area of Bengaluru”.
In 1870, the garden was first created covering 100-acres by British officials of Mysore state. Cubbon park gets its name from the longest-serving commissioner of Mysore state, Mark Cubbon.
However, it was renamed in 1927 as Sri Chamarajendra Park in honour of Wodeyar ruler Sri Chamarajendra Wodeyar. Locally, the park is still referred to as Cubbon Park.
The park hosts close to 100 floral species within its precincts, including ornamental trees and many exotic flowering plants. Imported trees like Silver oak enhance the natural beauty of the garden.
An array of historical monuments and edifices are also located in the garden complex. Smack at the entrance of the park is the Karnataka High Court building, displaying an impressive Gothic-style stone structure.
One of the most beautifully laid-out gardens in India, Cubbon Park is a favourite spot for joggers in the city. This park offers something for everyone. A children’s library, tennis pavilion and art gallery also form part of this green garden complex.
Cubbon park metro station serves as the nearest metro station. You can also take state transport buses from other parts of the city to reach this park.
14. Eco Park, Kolkata
Spread over a vast expanse of 480 acres, Kolkata’s Eco Park is one of the biggest urban gardens in India. It was inaugurated by West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee in 2012, making it a recent addition to the list of top attractions of Kolkata city.
The park is segregated into various sections including ecological zones and theme gardens. Wetlands and Grasslands are counted as part of the ecological zone.
One complete section is dedicated to the seven wonders of the world. In this section of the garden, you can witness replicas of the seven wonders.
Eco Park is also known as Prakriti Tirtha (Nature Pilgrimage), owing to the presence of huge ecological zones inside the park.
Apart from these, theme gardens of Eco Park are a major draw for visitors. The Chinese garden, formal garden, butterfly garden, bonsai garden, cactus walk, bamboo garden and mist house are some of the popular ones.
A wide range of recreational activities, like zorbing, paddle boating, rowing, speed boating and kayaking are offered here.
The park lies in the New Town area along the Biswa Bangla Sarani road. It is about 11 km away from Kolkata airport. From Howrah station bus terminal, any Rajarhat-bound bus can drop you to Eco park.
15. Zakir Hussain Rose Garden, Chandigarh
Famous as Asia’s largest Rose Garden, Zakir Hussain Rose Garden is a sprawling 30-acre garden in Chandigarh city. Dr. M.S. Randhawa, the first chief commissioner of Chandigarh, founded this splendid garden in 1967.
The garden gets its name from India’s former president, Zakir Hussain. It is a landscape garden with well laid-out lawns and flower beds.
Dotted with thousands of rose plants of over 1600 species, it is indeed one of the most gorgeous rose gardens in India. Aside from roses, medicinal trees like camphor and yellow gulmohar also adorn the garden.
A casual stroll through the garden is absolutely refreshing. It is accessible from all parts of Chandigarh city by cab and state transport buses.
Over To You Now…
Which ones feature in your travel wishlist from this list of beautiful gardens in India? Tell us in the comment section below.
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