Accessibility Grade: B
The Botanical Gardens section of this park is absolutely gorgeous! It includes a number of parking lots, all of which have plenty of accessible parking spots WITH unloading zones. Inside, it featured a large variety of plants and animals that call these gardens home, including cardinals, blue jays, and even a mother alligator with her babies. Most of these exhibits are easy to access via wide trails that are fully paved. However, some of the smaller gardens could only be accessed by taking narrower trails that were made of packed dirt and shells. To make things better, the gardens also had a number of accessible bathrooms.
Here's a picture of Kyle's blue Toyota Sienna, in the parking lot of the Florida Botanical Gardens. The sidewalk is plenty wide for wheelchair users and leads in three directions. To the left, there are more accessible spots located outside of the picture's frame. To the right are more spots and an entrance to the park, which is also located outside of the picture's frame. Taking the sidewalk forwards will take you to the gift shop and rec. center.
Here are three more parking spots for accessible vehicles. Two unloading zones ensure that there's plenty room for mobility equipment users to safely enter and exit their vehicles.
In this shot, a white sign for the gift shop is shown, pointing straight ahead. There's a wide path, made of fake wood. There are a number of trees, bushes, etc. lining the path.
A path leads into the park, surrounded by trees on both sides. There is a map to the right of the path, and a blue box that says "Donations" written in white.When you first enter the park, a wide landing leads to a boardwalk directly ahead. Suspended above it is a sign that reads "Welcome" in green letters, atop a white background. The boardwalk is wide enough for at least two wheelchair users to fit side-by-side. Two trash cans are located to the left of the boardwalk's entrance, and a white bench to the right of it. There are a few wildlife warning signs directly to the right of the path, and an advertisement for a catering company.
A wide path, which is also a bridge, crosses a river that winds through the park. There are potted plants on the left, surrounding a section that is shaded and has seats. This section is mostly out of the picture's frame.The aforementioned shaded area, covered by a blue roof. Two potted plants are arranged, one at each side of its entrance. Inside are three benches, one on each side, with a lot of room for people who use mobility devices.Two pillars, one on each side of the path, are peach-colored and have the words "Wedding Garden" carved into them. The entrance is extra wide, and can fit multiple wheelchair users side-by-side. There are trees on both sides that offer shade. Beyond the entrance, shrubs, trees, and a patch of green turf are visible. All of this is easy for power wheelchair users to navigate, though manual wheelchair users may experience some difficulty rolling over the turf.
Here's another broad path that is wide enough to fit a few wheelchair users, side-by-side. Are you starting to see a trend? 😉 It cuts through a section of wood, so that there are trees on both the right and to the left. Behind the trees on the left is a lake, which is slightly visible in this picture. There is leaf litter on either side of the path.
This path isn't too wide, so it may be safer for wheelchair users to follow each other while here. Mulch is spread on both sides of the sidewalk, while trees and shrubs decorate the left and white flowers span the right side. In the distance is a short bridge, which is pretty smooth. After it, the path veers to the left.A pavilion, which has a picnic table underneath it, is situated in the left side of the frame. "Palm Garden" is displayed in an arch, along the front of its roof. There is plenty of room for a number of wheelchair users to fit under it. Surrounding the pavilion is a paved courtyard. The ground has a stone-like texture, so wheelchairs users may experience a slightly bumpy ride while travelling over it. Beyond the courtyard is a path that is made of hard-packed shell sand. This area is maneuverable for wheelchair users, though it may be a little more difficult for some manual wheelchair users, whether their equipment is self-propelled or push. Keep an eye out for areas where the sand may look soft, which could result in your wheelchair becoming stuck.This area of sidewalk is where four paths meet. In their center is a reddish circle, with "The Florida Botanical Gardens carved into it. There is a bouquet of flowers between the words "Floida" and "Botanical." The circle has enough space to accommodate a number of people who may be walking along any of these paths, all of which are wide enough to accommodate two wheelchair users side-by-side. The suspended vines, on either side, make it feel slightly sheltered.Throughout the park, there are a number of lawn chairs that overlook a number of lakes. In this picture, a wide path leads guests along a lakeside. To the left, there are two, white lawn chairs placed underneath a large tree, with a wooden fence in front of them. The ground is bumpy because of tree roots. Because of these barriers, there isn't a great deal of room to accommodate a wheelchair user.Luckily, there are a lot of lakes in the Florida Botanical Gardens. This area is much more accessible than the last. Though two, white lawn chairs occupy the right side of this space, there is a wide area to the left that is open, where a few wheelchair users can fit. This area feels isolated, surrounded by a variety of trees and ferns. Ahead is a lake, largely blocked from view by some water plants. A fountain is sending water outward, in a wide ring.This section of pavement is situated next to a lake. It has a stone texture, which is slightly bumpy but isn't too bad. There are blue benches, which face each other, situated on the left and right side of this space. There is plenty of room for a number of wheelchair users between these benches. It's overlooking a lake, though the view is slightly obscured by some trees on the right.
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