The 75-hectare (190-acre) Botanical Garden of Montréal (Jardin botanique Montréal) sits in the shadow of the Olympic Stadium. Opened in 1931, the botanical garden has established itself as one of Canada's premier research institutions, but for most visitors with green thumbs, the draw is the themed gardens: alpine, Chinese, Japanese and, perhaps the most intriguing, the First Nations garden. Skillful designers have managed to create the illusion of a remote woodland setting, far from the bustle of Montréal, while introducing visitors to the plants used by the First Nations of the province. Amateur botanists should also stop by the nearby Biodôme, located in a building originally constructed for the Olympics. There installations re-create four different climatic zones (tropical rain forest, temperate forest, maritime regions and polar environments), with 500 plant species and more than 4,500 animals.
By John Newton, AFAR Contributor
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