Escape to the botanical beauty of White River Gardens. The stunning scenery of this 3-acre attraction, which includes the indoor Hilbert Conservatory as well as the outdoor DeHaan Tiergarten, will transport you far away from the urban cityscape of downtown Indianapolis to a lush, natural oasis.
Family Nature Center
Nature is all around us — even in your own backyard. What can you discover when you look at nature up close? Come find out in the Family Nature Center in White River Gardens. Designed for young nature enthusiasts and their families, the Family Nature Center highlights Indiana wildlife and its habitats. You will get your hands dirty, explore the White River Gardens in new ways and even meet some local animals up close, like a black kingsnake and eastern box turtle. Come play with us! It's amazing how much there is to learn.
The Family Nature Center is open daily and is included with Zoo admission. Check the schedule card (found in the Zoo's map) for daily hours.
The Hilbert Conservatory is the shining centerpiece of White River Gardens. Named in honor of Stephen and Tomisue Hilbert, the towering glass enclosure is climate controlled and hosts multiple seasonal shows each year. Offering 5,000 square feet of lush, tropical greenery, the Conservatory is a great place to come and relax as you take in the warm, tranquil atmosphere. The 65-foot ceilings flood the space with light, and the mezzanine level provides a bird's eye view of the glorious indoor gardens below. With its gleaming shape visible in the night sky, the Conservatory is an architectural complement to the downtown skyline. Inside the Conservatory, look for the exotic palm trees and flowering plantscapes throughout a warm tropical environment.
The outside gardens in their entirety are named for the DeHaan Family
Foundation. The word Tiergarten, meaning "animal park," was chosen to honor the DeHaan family's origins as well as the
relationship of the Gardens to the rest of the Indianapolis Zoo.
The variety of plants and garden designs changes seasonally, including the spectacular spring tulip showcase featuring hundreds of tulips that fill our garden beds with vibrant colors each year! As you wander through White River Gardens, look around to discover some whimsical surprises hidden amongst the many plants and flowers. Plus you can find inspiration on how to grow this beautiful greenery in your own backyard.
As you walk out the doors from the Hilbert Conservatory, you'll discover several distinctive areas within the outdoor gardens. Each one is beautiful in its own way while offering a different perspective of garden design.