I really enjoy gardens, whether it is my own or a public one, I just love to visit. After a busy morning in the Wieliczka Salt Mines, I decided to spend an afternoon in the sunshine since I had spent the morning underground. Wandering through more beautiful, old streets I eventually arrived at the botanical garden of Jagiellonian University (after walking past and missing the entrance several times). I was greeted by a beautiful lemon yellow house with a fancy entrance. The site once belonged to the Czartoryski family, but has since extended and Changed ownership. Entry is 9 pln which I initially thought was expensive but then I realised it was only £1.80 (bargain).
Covering 10 hectares and dating back to 1783, it is Poland’s oldest botanical gardens. An escape from the city, within the city was a great find to spend an afternoon in the sunshine. Upon entering I was greeted with the choice of a colourful flora filled path or the first of three glasshouses.
Victoria was the first glass house I visited and I was not disappointed. I entered the hothouse to see a small pond covered with lily pads and beautiful blooms of orchids floating down from the ceiling dating back to 1860. This led along a one way path through many exotic plants and cacti. The humidity was a big shock after the fresh air I have been used to recently.
Passing through some greenery and fresh air I chose to visit the next of the three glasshouses, Holenderka, it sadly is closed to the public because it is full of rare plants.
Enjoying the sunshine I found a bridge which went over another pond. This led me to a beautiful 500 year old Oak tree which stands in the middle of the gardens. It is one of the last remnants of the primaeval forests which once covered Poland. It shimmered beautifully in the late afternoon sunshine. It was the perfect place to sit and relax.
On my wanders through the Rose garden and alpine gardens, I found a couple of pumpkins which were perfectly sized for Halloween.
Next up was an adventure through the Jubilee palm house and a long hothouse. Several compartments, each with different groups of plants. This ranged from huge palm trees to carnivorous plants and some interesting shaped flowers.
Back in the outdoors, I’m safe to say no plants ate me I wound my way through more flora filled plants which were filled with multicoloured flowery loveliness. Passing through a patch of perfectly placed wild flowers it was time to go back to my hotel. Leaving the plants to go to sleep after a hard day sitting in the sunshine.
I had a wonderful afternoon in the botanical gardens, I would love to return in the summer to see all of the flowers in bloom and find out what will go in the new glasshouse.
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