EDMONTON -- Guests are now able to visit the University of Alberta’s Botanic Gardens.

The large grounds opened Thursday with safety precautions like mandatory masks and maximum group sizes reduced to five people from the same household or two-cohort households.

In order to gain admission, visitors must make advance reservations.

The patio café concession, indoor spaces and exhibits will be closed.

There are several themed areas for visitors to explore, like the Japanese and Alpine Gardens.

Visitors are able to order brunch or special night time picnics catered by the facility to enjoy.

Carl Charest, interim general manager of the garden, said in a statement that the facility was able to welcome over 115,000 visitors without a single case of COVID-19 reported.

“We’re determined to follow that track record,” Charest said. “Once again, the garden is a refuge, a place to get away for a few hours, relax, rejuvenate and enjoy life, safely.”

“We have two goals this season,” he added. “To make the garden available as a happy place to relax. And to keep our guests and staff healthy and safe.”

Established in 1959, the University of Alberta Botanic Garden has 240 acres worth of plant collections, several cultural gardens, and natural areas for visitors to enjoy.

The garden is located approximately 15 minutes southwest of Edmonton and five kilometres north of Devon on Highway 60.