Exploring Bellingrath Gardens in Theodore, Alabama

May 10, 2021

Travel, Travel Guides

Have you ever been to Bellingrath Gardens? I had never heard of it before my trip to the coast of Mississippi. This beautiful estate in Theodore, Alabama is only an hour east of Biloxi, Mississippi, and it is not to be missed!

This historic home and its surrounding gardens have been featured in Southern Living Magazine for good reason. Keep reading to find out about the incredible blooms, fountains, and more waiting in Bellingrath Gardens!

The Conservatory and Rose Garden

Bellingrath Gardens - The Conservatory surrounded by flowers

The Conservatory was easily one of my favorite places in the gardens. To get to this greenhouse you must walk through the beautiful rose garden.

Not many roses were in bloom at the time we visited at the beginning of April. But I’ve seen photos of the rose garden in full bloom, and it is stunning!

Bellingrath Gardens - Inside the Conservatory Greenhouse

Me walking around inside the Conservatory

Inside the Conservatory, you’ll find many lush green plants and beautiful flowers. The hydrangeas were especially gorgeous!

Bellingrath Gardens - Hydrangeas inside the Conservatory

I’ll be honest with you: we were cold. There was some unexpected cold weather on the day we were at Bellingrath Gardens, and the warm Conservatory was the best place to escape the chilly wind!

We ended spending a good bit of time in here taking photos, even though it only has 3 rooms.

Bellingrath Gardens - Inside the Conservatory sitting at the fountain

Brittney sitting by the fountain inside the Conservatory

The Secret Garden

Almost immediately after leaving the Conservatory, you’ll see the Secret Garden.

Bellingrath Gardens - Secret Garden

This charming little cove is a great place to sit and watch the fountain. (Provided the weather is nice!)

The Great Lawn

In the center of Bellingrath Gardens you’ll find the Great Lawn.

Bellingrath Gardens - The Great Lawn

This nice clearing used to be a farm and now is lined with beautiful flowers.

Bellingrath Gardens - Flowers lining the Great Lawn

Flowers lining the Great Lawn

Behind the flowers pictured above, you may be able to see the pink Azalea bushes. The beginning of April is when the famous Azaleas are in full bloom.

Bellingrath Gardens - Pink Azaleas in April

Mermaid Fountain

We also spent a good amount of time at the Mermaid Fountain and the streams around it. You may be able to see the Mermaid statue in the center of the picture below.

Bellingrath Gardens - Flowers leading to Mermaid fountain

The tulips lining the sidewalks were lovely, and we tried to take lots of photos here. Unfortunately, the sun was creating some harsh shadows, and people kept getting in the shot.

The water running down towards the statue is coming from the Live Oak Plaza.

Live Oak Plaza

This was another area we enjoyed! The Live Oak Plaza in the center of the gardens is a group of fountains and of course, live oaks.

Bellingrath Gardens - fountain and live oaks

I’m always obsessed with live oak trees. These reminded me of the ones in Charleston at Magnolia Gardens.

Bellingrath Gardens - sitting under the live oak trees

The Bellingrath Home

Bellingrath Gardens - The historic Bellingrath Home

Built in 1935, this historic home is furnished with antiques collected by the Bellingraths and provides guided tours every day.

We didn’t take a tour, but the outside of the home was very pretty. It sits right next to the Chapel and the Delchamps Gallery of Boehm Porcelain.

Here is a view of the house from the Live Oak Plaza. You can also see the Tulips in bloom!

Bellingrath Gardens - View of the house from live oak plaza

Grotto and River Front Pavilion

Bellingrath Gardens - Grotto facing River and River Front Pavillion

The grotto next to the Bellingrath home allows water to fall down from the fountains and pools and to follow the stairs down to the river. Down at the riverside, you can see the River Front Pavilion which provides a nice view of the Fowl River.

Other Highlights

We spent so much time in the Conservatory and Live Oak Plaza that we ran out of time to see some of the other interesting stops in the garden.

For example, the Bayou Observatory and Bayou Boardwalk offer interesting views of the various wildlife living in the neighboring bayou. The Asian American Garden is based on the styles of both Chinese and Japanese gardens.

We did get a glimpse of Mirror Lake and the Rustic Bridge. You can walk all the way around the lake or just pass by on your way out of the gardens.

Bellingrath Gardens - bridge over Mirror lake

We were also able to see the Gazebo Garden which was our last stop before reaching the entrance and gift shop.

Bellingrath Gardens - Gazebo garden

You could easily spend hours exploring the gardens and touring the Bellingrath home. Visit the Bellingrath website to find out about their special holiday events and see what’s in bloom!

Have you ever visited the Bellingrath Gardens? This lush Southern estate is only an hour east of Biloxi, MS, making it the perfect day trip. It was even featured in Southern Living Magazine! From beautiful fountains to flower-filled greenhouses, this estate is the perfect place to spend hours exploring and taking photos. Find out why the historic Bellingrath home and its surrounding gardens are worth exploring! #southerntravel #alabamatravel #historichomes


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