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The Historic Bok Sanctuary

Last revised May 25, 2003 .
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At A Glance 128 acres of gardens, pools and nature trails. Admission charged $6.00 adults; $2 children (5-12) under 5's free. Open daily from 08:00 AM - 18:00 (Last Admission 17:00). Tel (863) 676-1408.


The Historic Bok Sanctuary (formerly Bok Tower Gardens) is a large park of gardens and nature trails located approximately 15-mins south of Cypress Gardens at Lake Wales. Seasonal colourful displays are provided by Azaleas and Magnolias, whilst animal lovers will find plenty of Squirels, Ducks and Quail.

Surrounded by pools and winding pathways, the Singing Tower is a 205 foot stone and marble tower containing 60 bronze bells, which chime every half hour. A 45 minute carillon recital occurs daily at 3:00 PM.

The Historic Bok Sanctuary is located on top of the highest point in the Floridian Peninsula, "Iron Mountain" at 298 metres above sea level.

The Historic Bok Sanctuary was dedicated to the American people in 1929 as a gift from publisher and author Edward W. Bok. Bok, a Dutch immigrant, was inspired to develop the Gardens and Tower by the words of his grandmother: "...Make you the world a bit better or more beautiful because you have lived in it.". The name was changed in August 2002 from "Bok Tower Gardens" to "The Historic Bok Sanctuary"

Bok enlisted the aid of Landscape Architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. for the grounds and Architect Milton B. Medary for the tower. In 1922 Bok bought the first of the several parcels of land which now comprise the 157 acre garden.

The bell tower, built of marble from Georgia and coquina rock from Florida, is 205 feet high. The tower supports the Carillon, a gigantic instrument using 60 tuned bronze bells which are played from a keyboard.

According to Bok, the purpose of it all is simply to share the influence of beauty reaching out to visitors through trees, shrubs, flowers, birds, the superb architecture of the tower and the music of the carillon; a restful, quiet, beautiful place.

The Historic Bok Sanctuary is a great place to unwind and relax, and although it doesn't have the thrill-rides of some of central Floridas theme parks, there's still plenty to keep everyone occupied.

The Historic Bok Sanctuary is located at 1151 Tower Boulevard, Lake Wales, FL 33853. For more information contact (863) 676-1408 or visit the official Historic Bok Sanctuary web site.



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