You have been busy strolling down Champs-Élysées, climbing up the Eiffel Tower, visiting museums, shopping and dining, so now it is time to relax, listen to birds and stretch on the grass. It is surprisingly easy to find beautiful green spaces in Paris to escape the city’s hectic rhythms.
Jardin des Plantes
Created in 1626 as the royal medicinal plant garden, the Jardin des Plantes on the Left Bank is the main botanical garden in France. It has over 10,000 plant species, elegant glasshouses, rose, winter and Alpine gardens and even a small maze and a mini-zoo.
Parc des Buttes-Chaumont
Once an execution place for criminals and public waste ground, Buttes Chaumont was transformed into a romantic park by Baron Haussmann in 1867. Located in the 19th arrondissement, Buttes Chaumont boasts spectacular views of Paris, three miles of walking paths, a lake with a waterfall, grotto and large meadows where you can have a picnic.
Bois de Boulogne
This large public park was Paris’s answer the London’s Hyde Park. Covering over 2000 acres, the park includes woodland, English landscape gardens, a large lake with swans and ducks, two racecourses, restaurants and sports clubs. The Jardin de Bagatelle in the park is famous for its romantic Nymph Pond with water lilies and the prize-winning rose garden with 1,200 stunning varieties.
Situated in the 8th arrondissement this public garden covers 20 acres. It was landscaped in the 18th century and later re-styled to look like an English garden with a pond, lovely shaded paths and beautiful statues. Parc Monceau is a great place to have a glimpse into Parisian life as it is popular with local residents.
Jardin des Tuileries
This 17th century formal Garden of the Tuileries is the largest and oldest in Paris. It can get crowded in summer months but the views of the Place de la Concorde and Arc de Triomphe from here are unbeatable.
Photos via Flickr by: Tom Hilton, Guillaume Baviere, Steve Shupe, Norio Nakayama.