The most beautiful gardens in the world

Versailles Gardens, France

Versailles ©HarshLight/Flickr

There is so many natural and man-made wonders on this planet one cannot only start to make a list of them. I believe however that gardens unite in some way the beauty creating power of nature and man, that is why I want to share with you the top of the tops from my personal list of the most beautiful gardens in the world.

I have not been to all of them myself, but am still amazed of the beauty and magic they are surrounded by and would love to hear from someone who had been to any of these wonderful gardens. A top 5 is quite short so I promise to come back later with separate posts for the most breathtaking gardens for every continent. 

Quinta da Regaleira, Portugal

Quinta da Regaleira, Sintra, Portugal

Quinta da Regaleira ©Flickr.Whisker/Flickr

Considered one of the most beautiful and mystical places on Earth, the Quinta da Regaleira estate is located close to the historical center of the Portuguese city, Sintra. The heart of the estate is a beautiful palace which, together with the garden girded by fountains, grottoes, lakes, a chapel and many more fairy tale-like decorations is now on UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites list.

The garden itself is a 4 hectares large, a thickly treed park full of narrow roads and paths. One part of the garden is perfectly organized and arranged while the other part is left to grow completely wild, I prefer the wilder area, it is somehow even more magical than the rest of the estate.

Versailles, France

The Gardens of Versailles, France

Versailles Shoshanah/Flickr

The iconic palace and its gardens in the elite outskirts of Paris was once the permanent residence of the French monarchs and their courts until the Great French Revolution, the garden also got a lot from the glamour of the palace complex.

The gardener of the Roi-Soleil (Louis XIV, the Sun King) names Andre Le Notre did not simply plan a garden for the king, but an entire baroque city with trees, flowers, statues and large surfaces of water (lakes and fountains) covering about 800 hectares of ground. Many of the statues, fountains and other ‘decoration items’ also compete as individual attractions.

Garden of Cosmic Speculation, Scotland

The Garden of Cosmic Speculation

The Garden ©yellow book/Flickr

One of the most improbably and yet amazing places I have seen is the Garden of Cosmic Speculation in South-West Scotland near Dumfries. The garden was created by half-Scottish architect Charles Jencks inspired by feng shui, postmodern architecture and the secrets of the universe.

Its special structure brings together such idiosyncratic elements such as the DNA molecule, fractals, black holes and other mathematical and scientific themes and phenomena. It is combining the elements of nature with artificial forms in a completely unique but nonetheless admirable way and though it is neither classical nor the only amazing Scotish garden, I really like it.

Huntington Library Desert Garden, California

Huntington Institute's Desert Garden

Desert Garden ©brendan-c/Flickr

Let us leave Europe for a while; the Huntington Institute is near the city of San Marino, California in the USA. It hosts numerous themed botanical gardens and they are all amazing, however, I would like to highlight one of them, the amazing Desert Garden.

It is basically a beautiful cactus garden that is not only meant to show how beautiful the many different cacti species (as well as agave, aloe, bromeliads and other desert plants) are, but also that even the hostile desert climate can create wonderful natural art-works. It is a most extraordinary place, it is a great dream of mine to visit it once.

Bagh-e Fin, Iran

Bagh-e Fin Persian Garden, Iran

Bagh-e Fin ©ali reza_parsi/Flickr

And now in the finish we visit the mysterious East, more specifically Iran. Bagh-e Fin was established in 1590 and remains one of the oldest gardens in the country – the Persian Empire back then. With cypress older than 400 years, fountains, tea house and other tiny buildings the garden – according to Persian tradition – is meant to symbolize the paradise.

Bagh-e Fin covers about 2.5 hectares, it has got many water elements and its buildings are beautifully decorated in the Arabic style with geometrical forms and quotes from the Qur’an. The pressure of the water coming from the nearby hill was so strong that they could create structures with circulating water without using any mechanical pump. That’s something…

So this was it, I think they really are some of the most beautiful gardens existing, but please let me know if you disagree or have something else you would like to add.

 

 

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