For nearly four centuries, Amsterdam’s Hortus Botanicus has regaled visitors with its lush greenhouses and exotic plants. Originally founded in 1638 to serve as a herb garden for the city’s doctors and pharmacists, it’s one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world.
An oasis in the centre of the city
The Hortus Botanicus offers a tranquil haven from the hustle and bustle of the city surrounding it and contains over 6,000 different indigenous and non-native trees and plants. In addition to a gorgeous cafe, outdoor gardens, and a ‘hothouse’ that emulates three different tropical environments, hundreds of majestic butterflies can be found frolicking inside the Botanicus’ Butterfly Greenhouse.
Standing the test of time
Some of the more unique plants on display include Victoria, the garden’s giant water lily. When in bloom, the 154-year-old lily opens its flower every night around dusk. Also keep an eye out for the Bontanicus’ centuries-old agave cactus that dates back to the Roman era.