From TikToks about making jam to tutorials showing you how to sew your own linen aprons, cottagecore—the aesthetic that idealizes country life—has swept the Internet. The movement focuses on idyllic notions like gardens, the cozy indoors and the perfect afternoon tea. If you’re looking to escape and experience the nostalgia of quaint living, plan a visit to these five enchanting botanical gardens.
Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden
Start your cottagecore day off with a stop at local coffee shop Whisk, where you can sample a selection of cozy teas and pastries before a private lesson in making croissants from scratch. Next, pass by Luxor Vintage Clothing to get the perfect flowing dress, picnic basket and sun hat for your nostalgic adventure. Summer is an ideal time to enjoy sunshine in the garden or take a photo by the cute cottage inside the Conservatory.
Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden
To enjoy this charming botanical garden, you won’t need more than a picnic blanket and a book. Stop by Lucky Dog Books in Oak Cliff and browse the shelves for a vintage volume. Then head over to the Dallas Arboretum and find a grassy spot in The Chandler Lindsley Shadow Garden, where the azaleas bloom all summer. Or else select a secluded bench in the misty Eugenia Leftwich Palmer Fern Dell and take a little time to read or observe nature. Don’t forget to visit Crape Myrtle Allee for an added magical moment.
International Rose Test Garden
You could spend an entire day at the International Rose Test Garden, with its rows of different vibrant flowers to admire. Stop by Artist & Craftsman Supply to get some sketching materials before heading to the garden. Afterward, head over to Meriwether’s for a meal made with produce from the restaurant’s Skyline Farm. Recommended: the parsnip and apple farm greens and one of the homemade pastas.
Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
An hour southwest of Philadelphia, the idyllic town of Kennett Square is nestled in the Pennsylvania countryside. After exploring State Street, drive over to Longwood Gardens, with more than 50 areas ranging from magical indoor nooks like the Tropical Terrace to cozy outdoor spaces such as the Oak and Conifer Knoll. For a complete cottagecore experience, book at stay at the elegant Inn at Whitewing Farm or Fairville Inn outside of town.
Chicago Botanic Garden
The cottagecore lifestyle is waiting for you near the Windy City. Start off at Harvey House Bed & Breakfast, where the meals are farm-to-table and there are plenty of cozy corners for knitting. Then arrange an Eat the Neighborhood tour with Odd Produce to forage your way through the city, learning about the edible plants you can find in each neighborhood. Finally, spend a day at the Chicago Botanic Garden. We recommend the wildly colorful Crescent and the tranquil English Oak Meadow.