It is said that parks are the lungs of cities. Some of them hide the real history of the place and others just offer us multiple leisure options. Now that the sun has arrived and it seems that it wants to stay with us, it´s time to explore the most beautiful and legendary gardens in the old continent. Welcome to a journey through the great gardens of Europe!
1.Versailles Château Gardens (Paris, France)
They are probably the most formal French style gardens in the country and it took 40 years to complete them. Here it is easy to get lost, as the park spreads over more than 800 hectares. But these gardens are not just one place; instead, they enclose several little treasures such as L’Orangerie, the Grand Canal, the French gardens, the fountains, and the Estate of Marie-Antoinette with the Petit Trianon and the Grand Trianon. This is a great place to visit in the summer but make sure you have enough time to get the essence of the landscape artist, André Le Nôtre.
How to get there: The easiest way to get to Versailles from Paris is by train (RER C5-Line in the direction of Versailles-Rive-Gauche)
2.Kew Gardens (London, UK)
They were awarded UNESCO World Heritage Site status in 2003 and it probably will take you around three hours to explore the whole of the length of the gardens- Don’ t rush, take your time and bring your lunch with you. This a great place to get in touch with nature, as the gardens and botanical glasshouses are home to over 30,000 species of plants, from which you will fall in love with the bamboos (this is the home of the largest collection of bamboos in the UK). Kew gardens surprises anyone who visits them. One of its most special secrets is the Minka House, an authentic Japanese pagoda.
How to get there: The closest London underground station is Kew Gardens (District Line – Richmond branch and London Overground)
3.The Berlin-Dahlem Botanical Garden (Berlin, Germany)
Great architecture and greenhouses are some of the things you will find if you visit The Berlin-Dahlem Botanical Garden. It was created between 1897 and 1910 and today is considered as a green oasis in the middle of Berlin- It is one of the top three botanic gardens in the world. This is a great place to spend hours smelling and finding more about plants from all over the world -Remember Berlin comes back to life during the Spring and Summer days!
How to get there: Königin-Luise-Straße 6-8, 14195 Berlin Steglitz.
4.National Gardens (Athens, Greece)
The National Gardens or “Vassilikos Kipos” are the best place to escape the city. It is said that the gardens are a bit like an exotic jungle in the middle of Athens. They used to be the private gardens of the king and today they have turned into a beautiful labyrinth of trees, flowers and animals from all over the world. There is also a small zoo with wolves from Bulgaria, monkeys and peacocks among other animals. However, this is not the Athens Zoo, which definitely deserves a visit. If you like ducks, this is your place. These friendly and comical animals will follow you all across the park. Without any doubt, the National Gardens have the same charm as the city in which they are based.
How to get there: The National Gardens are based in the heart of Athens. The main entrance is located in Amalias Avenue, next to the Parliament.
5.Frederiksberg Gardens (Copenhagen, Denmark)
This is a very urban park very close to Frederiksberg Alle, a lovely boulevard with shops, restaurants and little cafés. For centuries, the Frederiksberg Gardens have been a favourite outing spot for Copenhageners. Don´t ever miss the magnificent 17th-centry royal palace, The Frederiksberg Palace and if the weather helps, consider the plan of having a picnic. After that, take a stroll and get lost between waterfalls, beautiful lakes, grottos and even a zoo-You will feel as if you were in one of Hans Christian Andersen’s stories.
How to get there: Frederiksberg is like a city within the city. To get there walk from Frederiksberg station, which is only 5-10 minutes.
6.Alhambra Gardens (Granada, Spain)
Whoever visits will easily understand why it has been awarded as one the 7 Wonders of the World. The Alhambra is a beautiful piece of Moorish art in the South of Spain. Walking across the Generalife water gardens will transport you to an ideal place and that is exactly how the Islamic culture imagines their paradise. Have a seat, feel the place and remember that these marvellous gardens were made in early 14th century and preserve their original shaping. After your visit to the gardens, don’t miss a walk through the old quartier Albaicín and a proper tapas evening (Here the tapa comes free with the beer!)
How to get there: The easiest way to reach La Alhambra is by bus (Line 30: Plaza Isabel la Católica/ Callle Pavaneras/ Barrio del Realejo/ Alhambra)
7.Boboli Gardens (Florence, Italy)
There is no doubt that Boboli Gardens are the most iconic image of the “Italian garden”. Here you will find monumental fountains, a multitude of marble and stone sculptures and all kinds of decorative elements that will let you feel as if you were in a dream sequence. This is one of the best places in Florence to get spectacular views of the city in all her glory and to wonder what happened in this great Renaissance City many years ago.
How to get there: The easiest way to get to The Boboli Gardens is by bus (Lines 36, 37 and 11)