Featured Parks

The Franklin Children's Garden

Children posing with Franklin the Turtle

An interactive garden for kids and families on the Toronto Island Park. Franklin Children's Garden is inspired by Franklin the Turtle from the celebrated book series written by Paulette Bourgeois, illustrated by Brenda Clark and published by Kids Can Press: a Corus Entertainment Company. The garden is divided into seven sections where children can enjoy gardening, storytelling, exploring wildlife and visiting seven child-accessible sculptures from the Franklin the Turtle series.

This park features:

Little Sprouts Garden, TD Storybook Place, Snail Trail, Hide and Seek Garden, Franklin’s Pollination Station, Pine Grove and Turtle Pond.


Franklin Children’s Garden is designed for self-guided exploration and discovery. Listed below are the various eco-themed programs, events and daily activities offered throughout the summer.

FREE Franklin Discovery Backpack!

Explore Franklin Children's Garden with a FREE Discovery Backpack! Inside you will find a self-guided nature guide, magnifier field guide, nature walk scavenger hunt, junior binoculars and more! Backpacks are available while supplies last.


Where and When:

June: Saturdays from 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm
July & August: Saturdays and Wednesdays

Wednesdays: Franklin Children's Garden
Saturdays: Island Information Booth at the Ferry Dock

The Garden is open seven days a week.

Little Sprouts Garden 

Drop-in at Little Sprouts Garden between July 1st, 2015 and August 31st, 2015 between 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm for fun kids' craft projects with many creative outdoor themes!


Franklin's Jr. Sprouts Camp - Spend a half day as a Parent/Guardian with child at Franklin Children's Garden. Activities include: storytelling, bug identification, organic gardening, nature studies and crafts. Check out the Toronto FUN Guide to register.


Find out how plants grow as you dig in the dirt, sow seeds or weed and water. All at the Kids Can Press Little Sprouts Garden.

Hide and Seek!

Get lost in the vine tunnel, explore the Tree house and enjoy bronze sculptures of Rabbit and Franklin.

Learn about Wetlands!

Learn about frogs and turtles at the round tables and observe them in their very own pond.


Ascend the spiral walkway of The Snail Trail to the highest point on the Toronto Islands. At the top, binoculars provide a panoramic view of the garden.


There are many types of butterflies at Franklin Children’s Garden such as the noble Monarch. Learn about other local species found  on the Toronto Island at Franklin’s Pollination Station. On your way, look for the child-accessible bronze sculptures of Franklin and his friends throughout the garden. You will see Franklin, Bear, Rabbit, Goose, Beaver and Snail!

Illustrated map of the Franklin Children's GardenFranklin Children’s Garden is open during regular Toronto Island Park hours. The four acre garden includes the following seven sections:

Franklin's Pollination Station

Franklin's Pollination Station is a fun educational garden that explains the important role pollinator's play. Located at the base of the Snail Trail, take time to discover all the different pollinator populations that call the Toronto Island home. From the base of the Snail Trail and up the winding path, there are many points to stop and learn about pollinators while enjoying the sights and smells of flowers. *Franklin’s Pollination Station is the recipient of the 2015 Parks  and Recreation Ontario (PRO) Award of Excellence in Innovation! 

Hide and Seek Garden

At the centre of this playful area is a wheelchair-accessible Tree house which offers elements that children seek in their play – refuge, height and physical challenges. In addition, there is a vine tunnel and bronze sculptures of Franklin and Rabbit.

Kids Can Press Little Sprouts Garden

What's a garden without a little dirt? The Kids Can Press Little Sprouts Garden provides hands-on gardening for little and big gardeners alike. Visitors are encouraged to touch, smell and taste plants. Children learn to plant, cultivate and harvest vegetables and flowers.

Pine Grove

At Pine Grove, take a photo with Franklin and his friend Bear! Child-accessible bronze sculptures of Franklin and friends  can be found throughout the garden by Canadian sculptor Ruth Abernethy. Collect pine cones, feel the crunch of the leaves beneath your feet  in this enchanting nook and look for Franklin's many other friends – Beaver, Goose, Snail and Rabbit.

Snail Trail

The Snail Trail is a key lookout point and boasts the highest peak on the Toronto Island. Children delight as they explore its winding trail and flower-filled meadow alive with butterflies, birds and other critters.

The garden was designed by: Toronto Parks, Forestry and Recreation; landscaping architecture firms Janet Rosenberg + Associates; and Schollen & Company Inc. 

TD Storybook Place

TD Storybook Place Amphitheatre has been a highlight of The Franklin Children's Garden. The Amphitheatre hosts special events, shows, storytelling, performing arts, camp sessions, picnics and more. Join us at one of our many free events!

Habitat Pond

Water is one of the most popular features of outdoor exploraiton for children. Turtle Pond adds excitement to any child's visit as they get to observe turtles, frogs, birds and other critters in a wetland environment.