Bellevue Botanical Garden D’Lights
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At daycare, a fellow parent told me that he had taken his family to the Bellevue Botanical Garden D’Lights display. He had so many good things to say about the Garden D’Lights, that I decided this was the year my family would go. Thank goodness my family indulges my love of holiday light displays.
For those of you who don’t know the Seattle area very well. The Garden D’Lights are on, what locals call, the “Eastside,” meaning across lake Washington from Seattle. They’re located in a city called Bellevue, which is a business hub for lots of local business. I.e. Expedia, Inc., Eddie Bauer, Microsoft, etc. Having been in Washington for the past 11 years, I’ve spent a great deal of time in this city. However, this was my first time to the Bellevue Botanical Gardens. Based on what I saw at the Garden D’Lights display, I plan on coming back during the spring and summer to see the flowers in bloom.
Reasons to Visit the Bellevue Botanical Garden D’Lights
Over Half a Million Lights.
The designs are so fun and festive. From animals (a dragon!) to birds, flowers and more, patrons can walk around the botanical garden enjoying over a half a million sparking lights. It’s absolutely beautiful. I loved the poinsettia tree and the sunflowers. It was really fun seeing how the Garden D’Lights designers recreated the real garden into a whimsical and really magical display. It’s worth the $5/person and $5/car fees.
TIP: Children 10 and under are free.
TIP: Pets are not allowed. Only service animals are permitted.
Close to Downtown Bellevue
I would budget about 45 minutes to an hour at the Garden D’Lights, then, before or after you see the display head over to downtown Bellevue and grab a bite to eat. Bellevue has a ton of great restaurants; most noteworthy are from the famous local chef, John Howie, However, more casual dining like 520 Bar and Grill is also available. There’s something for everyone.
We didn’t take advantage of this offering, and I wish we did because of the Gingerbread Castle display, but Garden D’Lights offers coffee, tea, hot chocolate and other snacks (for purchase) if you need a little time to get out of the cold. Kind was also there, giving away free bars.
What to Bring
Given the Pacific Northwest is usually rainy, I would recommend bringing good rain boots, especially since the paths are not all paved. This particular night was rather cold, so bring mittens or gloves, as well as a warm waterproof jacket. We did bring our Uppababy stroller with us and I’m glad we did. While the paths are not paved, you can still get by with wheeling your kiddo around. I saw other parents toting their littles in a baby carrier as well.