Plan your visit
Preliminary Visits for Teachers
Free preliminary visits are available to any teacher thinking about bringing their students to the Botanic Garden. Visiting may help you to familiarise yourself with the Garden’s location, layout, resources and facilities and save valuable time on the day of the visit.
It is also possible to talk to a member of the Learning team and Botanic Garden staff about what to expect during your visit and how workshops can be tailored to meet your requirements. We can also give you further advice on health and safety and identifying hazards. Book your consultation in advance by contacting us.
Preparing for your Visit
Our teaching sessions and tours are designed so that children of all ages and abilities learn from and enjoy their visit. However, the most successful sessions take place when undertaken in conjunction with learning taking place in the classroom.
You can also download pre-visit advice for our most popular sessions from our Workshops and resources pages.
Access to the Botanic Garden for school groups is via the kiosk entrance next to the Howlands Park and Ride car park (please see number 26 on our map). The lead teacher should use the intercom to ask for entry to the Garden. Once the gate is open, please follow the path up to the greenhouses. Your coach can park for free at the Park & Ride and we can provide a pass for this. We suggest that when you are ready to depart your coach drives out of the Park & Ride and returns to the drop-off point to pick you up, so you don't have to cross the road.
Supervision during your Visit
All children should remain supervised for the duration of your visit whether it is self-led or led by a member of the 4Schools team. To ensure that the students get the most from their visit to the Botanic Garden we ask that all accompanying adults should be prepared to support the children and young people and fully engage in the session.
Food and Drink
You are welcome to bring packed lunches to eat in the Garden. In nice weather, groups can make use of the picnic areas or the lawned area. If the weather is inclement, school groups may use the education space in the glasshouse to eat lunch. However, this space is restricted in size and it may be necessary to run split sessions.
The Garden also has a café where teachers and helpers can purchase refreshments. It is also possible to order packed lunches in advance: please contact us before your visit to arrange this.
The Botanic Garden shop offers a fantastic range of gifts for children and accompanying adults to purchase. Pre-filled goody bags are also available for school groups to pre-order. Please contact the Learning team in advance to arrange your goody bags or if you have any questions about our shops.
Download our hazard identification sheets to help you with your risk assessments.