Tulips Parade at Nikitsky Botanical Garden (Picture: Ksenia)

CRIMEA – Here’s a summary of some of the garden’s different sections:

Upper Park

Here you’ll see a bust of the park’s founder overlooking a serene rectangular pond. A range of trees such as sequoias, cedars and cypresses can be found here, along with a number of other coniferous trees and flowers such as chrysanthemums and tulips. This section is the first you’ll get to experience when you visit the garden.

For an extra charge, you can enter the cactus greenhouse, which is home to one of Europe’s largest collections of plants that can tolerate droughts and desert-like conditions. There are over a thousand species that can be seen here, including over six hundred cactus species.

Lower Park

This is a section that was added after the garden was first opened. It’s located near the research centre and is home to a wide variety of exotic plants. There’s even an olive tree that’s over seven hundred years old. Other features include a pond with water lilies and a cascading pool with an adjoining staircase.
Seaside Park. This section was established in celebration of the garden’s two hundredth year of operation. It focuses on colourful, tropical flowers and plants that thrive in hot, humid weather.

Park Montedor

Designed to celebrate the garden’s one hundred and fiftieth anniversary, this section is where you’ll find an assortment of regional and national plants. Most of the plants here can’t be found outside of Crimea and usually grow in woodland areas.
Paradise Gardens. This section debuted in 2009 and is set within a hectare of land. It’s home to over 5,000 plant species and is known for being one of the garden’s most scenic and peaceful areas.

Primorsky Park

In this section of the garden, there are over a dozen life-size statues of dinosaurs dotted about. These were added in 2015 to complement the many plants in the garden that date back to the time of the dinosaurs. There’s a small excavation area where kids can pretend to be archaeologists and go digging in the sand. The dinosaur statues are made to be realistic: they make breathing movements and sounds, and can move about on the spot.

Throughout the year, the garden plays host to a number of seasonal and limited-time exhibitions and displays. For example, in the spring there’s the Tulip Parade, where you can see tulips and all sorts of other flowers.

Then in the summer, flowering plants such as lilies, hibiscuses and hydrangeas are under the spotlight. Towards the end of the year, there’s the Chrysanthemum Ball, which is an explosion of colour and is particularly popular with visitors. During this special event, visitors can vote for their favourite type of chrysanthemum on display, with the winner awarded a special title at the end of the ten-day exhibition.

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