One of my favorite places when I was at Madrid, was the Real Jardín Botánico. Like an art museum to architects… a botanical garden to agronomists o biologists.
The Real Jardín Botánico of Madrid is impressive. Its principal entry is just in front of the Prado museum, and it is actually a work of art. This entry was created by the italian architec Sabatini, and it was a tribute to Carlos III, and that’s why its named La Puerta del Rey. This entry is no longer open to public, instead, there is another entry named Entrada de Murillo, a piece of art created by the spanish architect Villanueva.
The first thing you see when you walk into Murillo’s Entrance is the collection of ornamental plants, my favorite part of the Garden (I love flowers!!). In my opinion, the most beautiful flowers you can find there are peonies ♥; but, there are also many other flowers like tulips, dalias and camelias. The truth is, I didn’t pay too much attention to the architectonical details, like the entries. I was more excited about the flowers and the greenhouses. See above some of my pictures of the ornamental plants zone 🙂 :
The Invernadero Santiago Castroviejo Bolíbar was another great surprise while visiting this Garden. Inside, there are species that are unusual to Spain’s flora diversity, for example plants from Cactaceae family, and some tropical species too. There are three rooms in this greenhouse that reproduce the exact conditions that these species need to survive and well.. this is kind of a recent project from the Real Jardín Botánico. At the en of this greenhouse, there is the Estufa de las Palmas, which is an old greenhouse built in XIX century to exhibit some plants that couldn’t resists outdoor conditions, like ferns and musses.
See, something really strange happened to me when I was visiting these Greenhouses: I felt like I was in México! First all those cactus.. and then the orchids, aves de paraíso, helechos, lirios; but actually this is like the “challenging” exposition in the Garden.. because they have to be really careful controlling the environment so the plants wont die. Instead, I was amazed with all the olives, the peonies, the camelias… common flowers and trees for people living in Spain, because they were not common to me at all! And this is the beauty of traveling: getting to know different things but appreciating what you have at home.
Of course, there was a lot more in the Garden of which, unfortunately, I don’t have any pictures :(. For example, a huge hall full of Olive Trees, called “The Walk of The Olives”; or a small lake, El Estanque de Lineo, considered “the heart” of the Garden. You definitely need a lot of time and patience to really get to know the entire Garden. Also, if you are staying in Madrid for a long time, it is recommendable to visit the Garden in different seasons, because species bloom according to the season. If you happen to be in Madrid, visit this place! even if you don’t like plants… there are beautiful landscapes to see, it definitely worth it!