Well known among the inhabitants of Rio de Janeiro, Jardim Botânico – Botanical Garden in English – is a great place to relax and spend some hours walking among exotic flowers and plants. A visit to Jardim Botânico should be on your list while staying in Rio de Janeiro.
How to get to Jardim Botânico
By car/taxi: Rua Jardim Botánico 1008
Note: It’s easy to get a taxi at the garden’s main entrance/exit when you are done with your visit.
Bus: From Copacabana/Ipanema/Leblon: For example 124 or 162
For more information, see map below.
Opening hours: Every day, except December 25th and January 1st
Monday 12 – 5 pm, Tuesday – Sunday 8 am – 5 pm
Price: 7 BRL (only cash)
The origins of Jardim Botânico
The Jardim Botânico was founded in 1808 by King John VI of Portugal. Originally the gardens were intended for the acclimatisation of spices imported from the West Indies such as cinnamon, nutmeg and pepper. The Jardim Botânico was opened to the public in 1822 and nowadays visitors from all over the world enjoy the beauty of this park each day.
Visit Jardim Botânico
After entering Jardim Botânico (from the main entrance) you’ll see a souvenir shop on your left, here you can get a map of the park and also buy some souvenirs. Next to the souvenir shop you find the open-air Café Botânica which is quite busy on weekends and holidays. They serve sandwiches, quiches, salads, snacks and beverages.
The park is huge, with its 350 acres of land there is a lot to see and discover. It contains more than 6,000 different species of tropical and subtropical plants and trees, including about 900 varieties of palm trees including the 750 m line of 134 palms that forms the Avenue of Royal Palms leading from one of the entrances into the heart of the gardens.
The vast diversity of trees and plants is astonishing. The towering Amazon trees provide protection to a wealth of wildlife including Toucans, Marmoset monkeys and many others. The Jardim Botânico is a UNESCO biosphere reserve and its royal palms and Pau-Brasil trees have become its symbol .
The Jardim Botânico has also become quite popular for people who want to take family pictures and wedding pictures – no wonder! While you walk among the impressive avenue lined with palm trees which offers you a great view of Christ the Redeemer you will totally understand it!
The Jardim Botânico is well equipped with signs and descriptions, so it’s easy to find your way. You’ll find big avenues as well as small paths that run along orchids, bromeliads, cacti, huge bamboos, and carnivorous plants and much more. Everywhere there are banks to rest, meditate, watch, listen and simply enjoy this piece of nature in the middle of the city. If you are lucky you might spot monkeys, there are also some interesting birds around, singing and flying over the trees. So watch out for Toucans, the Botanical Garden is probably your best chance to see them in Rio de Janeiro!
Highlights of Jardim Botânico
Some of the highlights of the Jardim Botânico are the Sensory Garden, the Orchidarium and the Japanese Garden. The Sensory Garden is filled with herbal and aromatic plants; just as the name promises, it’s a real experience for your senses. The Orchidarium is a greenhouse with over 2000 species of beautiful orchids, it’s also used as research center to study the diversity of the orchid family. And not to forget the beautiful Japanese Garden, which features Japanese trees, Bonsai garden houses and wooden bridges. You’ll also see small ponds with Japanese Koi Fish.
Getting around Jardim Botânico
Jardim Botânico is huge, so walking around can take ages. You can join a drive-thru tour of the garden in an electric cart. These carts seat up to 8 people and leave from the main entrance on scheduled hours all day long. You can book the carts at the main entrance of the park.
Another option is to go with a guide. Jardim Botânico
offers guides that take you on a walking tour through the gardens and tell you all about its history. The tour normally takes 90 minutes to 2 hours, is free of charge and is also offered in English. Tours can be booked at the main entrance.
If you’re looking for more insider tips in Rio de Janeiro, check out our Sightseeing section!
For more information about Jardim Botânico check out their homepage by clicking here!