When the hubbub of the city gets to be too much a botanic garden is the perfect place to escape on a city trip. A good garden should capture your imagination, calm you down and offer you a respite from normal every day life.
Wonder at the shapes, colors and scents of the amazing plants. Get lost in the greenery.
30+ Beautiful Botanical Gardens in Europe
Whether you like to visit gardens as a sightseeing activity on your vacation or plan your holiday around gardens you would like to see, here are a few of our favorite gardens and glasshouses in Europe and what makes them extra special. We have divided them into categories to make them a little easier to find. Enjoy!
GARDENS IN FRANCE
- Domaine du Rayol: a botanical garden and arboretum in the south of France dedicated to plants of the Mediterranean basin
- Jardin botanique de la Ville de Paris: four gardens make up the Jardin botanique including the greenhouses of the Jardin botanique des Serres d’Auteuil and the arboretum
- Monet’s gardens: possibly some of the most famous gardens in the world
- Jardin Botanique de Lyon: there are lovely old greenhouses at France’s largest public city garden
GARDENS IN PORTUGAL
- Botanic Garden Coimbra: the gardens have 22 acres of forest and some of the oldest iron structures in Portugal
- Jardim Botanico Lisboa: part of the Museum of Science, these gardens have an amazing palm collection and an interesting area with plants that grew during the time of the dinosaurs. I am always a fan of those exhibits!
GARDENS IN THE NETHERLANDS
- Hortus Botanicus: this historic botanical garden in Amsterdam has warm greenhouses in cold winter, check out the butterfly house
- Keukenhof: an amazing display of seasonal bulbs and flowers can be seen here in springtime
GARDENS IN BELGIUM
- Royal Greenhouses of Laeken: these beautiful glasshouses are only open for three weeks a year each spring
- Den Botaniek: a small public botanic garden and greenhouse in Antwerp that used to be the medical garden of the nearby Saint Elisabeth hospital
GARDENS IN THE UK
- Kew Royal Botanic Gardens: an extensive property with treetop walkway, Victorian glasshouses, Chinese pagoda and many other features makes Kew one of the most famous botanic gardens in the world
- Royal Botanic Garden of Edinburgh: possesses one of the world’s largest living collections of plants
- Belfast Botanic Gardens: home to a lovely palm house and a tropical ravine
- Oxford Botanic Garden: a wonderful place to stop when visiting Oxford
GARDENS IN SPAIN
- Real Jardín Botánico de Madrid: an amazing botanical garden with cacti and bromeliad greenhouses. Visit in May to experience the blooming of the rose garden
- Jardí Botànic Valencia: this botanical garden is connected to the University of Valencia and has amazing palm gardens and cacti greenhouses
- Jardí Botànic Barcelona: part of the Museu Ciencies, the botanical gardens demonstrate the similarities between Californian, Chilean, South African and Australian landscapes and those of the Mediterranean basin through a wide-ranging representation of plant species from Mediterranean climates
- Real Alcazar: garden lovers should not miss the beautiful Real Alcazar in Seville filled with orange trees and palms
GARDENS IN GERMANY
- Botanischer Garten München-Nymphenburg: lovely waterlily glasshouses, fountains and a huge array of plants
- Sanssouci Park: a huge palace and park just outside Berlin in Potsdam
- Botanischer Garten und Botanisches Museum: be sure to visit the Great Pavillion and see the giant bamboo
- Flora und Botanischer Garten Köln: public garden in Cologne with nearly 10,000 types of plants
GARDENS IN MONACO
- Jardin Exotique: this hillside cactus garden with spectacular views is a good reason to visit Monaco
GARDENS IN HUNGARY
- Füvészkert Botanical Garden: the oldest botanical garden in Hungary has some very old orchid plants
GARDENS IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC
- Botanická zahrada Přírodovědecké: these botanic gardens in Prague are owned by Charles University
GARDENS IN ITALY
- Orto Botanico di Roma: run by Sapienza University, this is a beautiful historic garden in the heart of Rome
- Giardino Esotico Pallanca: if you are a fan of cacti, check out this amazing garden
- Orto Botanico di Padova: the oldest botanical garden in the world is a UNESCO World Hertitage site
GARDENS IN SCANDINAVIA
- Botanical Garden of Copenhagen: with 27 glasshouses this Danish garden is worth a visit
- Kaisaniemi Botanic Garden: this garden in Helsinki is one of the oldest botanical gardens in Finland
- Gothenburg Botanical Garden: this huge 40 acre garden has around 16,000 cultivars. Don’t miss the rock gardens
While collecting the links for this list I came across a few websites with love for plants and gardens. Check them out!
Do you have a favorite botanical garden in Europe (or abroad)? Let us know about it so we can check it out too!