Metro : Gare d'Austerlitz
Jardin des Plantes was created
initiative of the premier botanists of the 16th century. Initially
providing medicinal plants to Louis XIII from 1626. Today the gardens
are more attuned to pleasant walks, offering a museum of natural
history, a greenhouse, an alpine garden, a rose garden and a menagerie.
All the plants are clearly tagged to allow them to be easily identified
by visitors. Perfect French flowerbeds adorn the central entrance. The
School of Botany have counted some 4500 different plants within the
gardens, including four historic trees: A Judah tree from 1785, a
Vélani oak from 1814, a Corsican pine from 1784 and lime blossom
tree planted during the bicentenary of the French Revolution. The
alpine garden, planted in 1930, includes 2000 plants spread over an
area of 4000m2. The menagerie is one of the world’s oldest zoos,
created in 1794 as the royal menagerie, housing various exotic animals.
Today it holds 240 mammals, 500 birds and 130 reptiles. A hedge
labyrinth allows visitors to lose themselves within its lush green
walls. The incredible Biblioteque du Jardin des Plantes dates back to
the French Revolution, its shelves holding around 3000 manuscripts, 800
000 books and a number of historic engravings, all dedicated to the
plant and animal worlds.