Campus Green Spaces
Are you looking to mix up your study space? Do you need a break from the LED lighting? Well, try taking a break or setting up an outdoor study space in one of these green spaces on campus!
The Arboretum - The crown jewel of naturalized areas near campus! According to their website, the Arboretum “encompasses 400 acres of plant collections, gardens, walking trails, natural woodlands, wetlands, and meadows”. To access a particularly special trail, enter the ‘arb’ via the road behind east residences (near the soccer complex), follow the footpath to the right and you’ll find a wooden boardwalk. This trail passes through an ephemeral pond (meaning there’s no standing water year-round), allowing you to see fairy shrimp during the spring due to a lack of aquatic predators. The arboretum even has a disc course! Discs can be rented from the UofG Athletics Office
Guelph Centre for Urban Organic Farming - Did you know there’s an on-campus organic farm? Walking through the GCUOF is a truly a multi-sensory experience: See the colorful variety of fruits and vegetables, feel the dirt under your feet and in your hands, hear the birds chirping and pollinators buzzing, taste the delicious produce (available for sale during market season – check their Twitter to stay updated), and smell the abundance of flowers (and yes, compost, if you stand close enough to the pile). The GCUOF is always in need of volunteers, so don’t hesitate to get in touch!
The Dairy Bush - The Dairy Bush is a seven-hectare woodlot located near the intersection of College Ave and Edinburgh Road (also accessible via the infamous ‘Dairy Path’ behind the Ontario Veterinary College). Despite its proximity to major roads, walking through the Dairy Bush feels like you’ve been transported to a much more remote and natural setting.
Sculpture Park - A bit different than the other areas on this list, the Donald Forster sculpture park (part of the Art Gallery of Guelph) is a neat escape from the hustle and bustle of main campus. Located kitty-corner to the Gordon & College Second Cup, you’ve likely walked/biked/bussed past this park countless times, but it’s worth making an intentional visit! According to the AGG, “the outdoor sculpture collection is enhanced with landscaping elements such as paved areas, lighting, berms, and plantings appropriate to the design of the park and siting of individual works”.
Conservatory Gardens - A nice spot to hang out, take some Insta-worthy pictures, or just wait for the bus, the conservatory gardens (and nearby greenhouse filled with exotic plants) is a scenic little area located beside the University Centre.