Ethel M. Chocolates Botanical Garden & Factory

Before I get into today’s adventuring post, just wanted to say on a personal note it’s been really nice to have an outlet for thoughts and feelings.

If you’re reading…thank you.

I feel the winter blues moving towards warm spring optimism–there are a few fun things that have been lifting my spirits (without the use of…ahem…spirits…like in my bourbon days…FORGIVE ME THE TERRIBLE PUN PLEASE!)

  1. Other Space: Directed by Paul Feig (Bridesmaids, The Boss, Ghostbusters reboot) this show is silly and short. A great distraction for the brain. 😉
  2. Living Buddha, Living Christ by Thich Nhat Hanh: Just a really thoughtful (and timely) look at religions taking time to listen to each other and have compassion for each other.
  3. Celestial Seasonings Vanilla Rooibos Tea: Decaf and comforting…nuff said!

And of course the hope that soon the sun will be warming the desert up a bit so I can get in a few more good hikes before we move into triple digits out here…. 😉

Now, onto today’s post!

I love adding another place to the ‘sober-friendly’ list, and I’m delighted to be adding Ethel M. Chocolate’s factory and Cactus Garden, located in Henderson, onto it!

The only reason I can’t categorize this as completely alcohol-free is they do have a few varieties of candy with booze inside, however, that is not at all the major focus of the factory, gift shop, or garden.

Welcome sign into the cactus garden

As I mentioned this is located in Henderson off of Sunset Road and most people think Henderson is ‘so far away’ from Las Vegas and the Strip, but in reality it’s about a 20-25 minute ride from The Strip here.

Very doable by Lyft/Uber/Cab and especially doable by rental car.

And you’ll likely go by one of my favorite stops (that I previously wrote about) Sunset Park, so you can make a day of it!

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A view of the cactus garden and front entrance to the factory in the later afternoon

Parking here is ample and free, just like admission. But there have been times I’ve seen 40-50 people come off a bus at one time to enjoy the sights! So be aware that it may be busy depending on the time of day.

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Lots of benches, tables & sitting areas to enjoy the outdoors

The Cactus Garden here features over 300 species of desert plants and during the holiday season they put up a really incredible light show…again, all for free!

A view of another bench area to enjoy the garden
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Sunset hour!

After you’ve enjoyed a stroll through the Cactus Garden, you can head inside to view where the candy is made for a self-guided tour.

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The newly renovated viewing area

In addition to remodeling the exterior of the factory, they’ve also done some really beautiful renovations this past year to the interior and the store area.

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This area used to be M&M themed and they’ve recently remodeled it to have a more fresh and simplistic feel…

In addition to chocolate goodies for sale, you can also enjoy a free sample chocolate coin of either their dark chocolate, milk chocolate, or white chocolate.

And if you’re still left with a craving or need a pick me up, they have a café with hot and iced beverages you can purchase to enjoy while you stroll through the garden area.

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Looking towards the new café area

On days I’m feeling restless I love going over here.

There are always families from out of town taking pictures together here, and the staff is never anything short of welcoming.

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A final view of the Cactus Garden before sunset…

If you have an hour you’d like to enjoy a sweet treat, be outside, and not break the bank– I can’t recommend Ethel M. Chocolates enough!

Thanks for reading, and happy sobering friends!

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