Bok Tower (Paradise)
One of my favorite places (there aren't a lot!) and the place I most recommend to friends when they ask where they should visit in Florida. Honestly! I regularly chat with friends all across the country (other countries too) and of course, when they hear Florida or think of taking a vacation where it's nice and warm they often ask my opinion. Top of my list is always Bok Tower. How could it not be! Have you seen these photos?! This is paradise or at least my version of it.
Just to clarify, I am in no way am I being endorsed by Bok Tower. Nope. Not 1 cent. Just wanted to make sure that's clear, my love is genuine.
Now you may say "Sure, it's pretty but hey man all the theme parks are a short drive away. I mean MICKEY!" or "It's Florida, it's all about the beaches, right?" And that stuff is cool, don't get me wrong, but there are a lot of beaches and theme parks. Well, I have a penchant for spending money wisely when and where I can and $14/adult (https://boktowergardens.org/tickets/) is my kind of price range. Now, yes the beach is free (usually) but as someone who has lived on the Florida coast all my life, near some of the BEST beaches, my eyes glaze over a bit at the thought of spending the day on the hot sand. And don't get me started on theme parks. The cost of admission, crowds, the price of a bottle of WATER (and food), traffic in Orlando alone... well my blood pressure spiked a bit just thinking about it. Look they are cool, Halloween Horror nights is my personal favorite - I'll work up a post later about past visits, but I can't get over the cost.
"Make the world a bit better or more beautiful because you have lived in it." - Edward Bok
But HEY we were talking about Bok Tower, sorry... I get distracted by rants. Have you ever seen a 205 ft tall pink marble tower? What about one with BEAUTIFUL carvings of all types? A giant sundial, surrounded by each zodiac sign, is placed on one full side, while a golden brass door engraved with the Book of Genesis sits on the northern face. On top sit eight giant pink marble heron statues with all manner of flora and fauna carvings surrounding the tower. Now that's all visual, not everyone is into that, don't worry this tower also SINGS! Okay, that seems rather silly, but really 60-bell carillon bells ring out over the surrounding gardens at 1 pm and 3 pm daily adding another dimension to the gardens. Check out the music below!
Now, I'd love to sit here and rant on and on about the gardens, but the paths and constant renovations make it an experience. So I'll simply leave you with some beautiful photos and a sincere hope that you will visit Bok Towers (check out the weather forecast first!) for yourself.