To continue our exploration of parks we went to the magnificent WRAL-TV Azalea Gardens in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina on a cool but sunny April day. We were wowed by the variety of azaleas and other flowers in this small but incredibly beautiful gem in the heart of a busy state capital.

A man in a red sweater stand by a small rock monument that says WRAL-TV Azalea Gardens.
Steve Welcomes You to WRAL’TV Azalea Gardens
Violet colored azalea flowers fill the entire photo.
Just one incredible shade of the intensely colored azaleas
A garden full of fuchsia and red azaleas with green leaves.
Fuchsia and red azaleas abound!
Colorful azaleas as far as you can see with trees and fluffy clouded blue sky.
Azaleas everywhere you look. So magnificent.

To give you some history, the founder of Capitol Broadcasting Company A.J. Fletcher created the gardens as a service to the community and opened to the public in 1959. This was just 3 years after WRAL-TV went on the air as the first VHF station in Raleigh. In his words “It was simply my way of paying a tribute to beauty for beauty’s sake.”

Large azalea bushes with white flowers hanging like grapes with red azaleas in the background.
An interest white azalea variety I had never seen.
Pink and red azaleas with spidery petals. Trees and sky in the distance.
Another fascinating azalea variety.
Deep pink azaleas along with foliage and trees.
And still more riotous color abounds!
A hot pink azalea bush with trees in the background.
A perfect hot pink specimen.

This magnificent garden showcases a huge range of flowering and nonflowering plant materials that are typical in Southern gardens and includes azaleas of every color imaginable, dogwoods, rhododendrons, deciduous azaleas and a new collection of hydrangeas.

A garden with tulips, pansies and yellow azaleas line a lush lawn.
And some tulips and pansies added for good measure.
A large bush with deep green leaves a snowball like white flowers.
Not sure if this is a strange azalea or white hydrangea. But beautiful whatever it is.
Amazing tulips in every color along with intensely colored pansies line the lush grassy lawn.
Amazing tulips in every color along with intensely colored pansies line the lush grassy lawn.

If you are looking for a bit of serenity, tranquility and beauty beyond measure you should treat yourself often to a stroll though the WRAL-TV Azalea Gardens. And as an added bonus it is free and open dawn to dusk all year long!