Gardens of Aranjuez
The Gardens of Aranjuez also called Royal Gardens is a series of landscaped parks and forests that were created for the Royal Palace of Aranjuez. In 2001, it was declared World Heritage Site by Unesco.
Their are four different gardens: the Garden of the Island (el jardín de la Isla), the Garden of the Parterre, the Garden of the the Prince, and the Garden of Elizabeth II.
The Garden of the Island is so called because the River Tagus (Tajo) surrounds three sides with an artificial estuary on the fourth. Its origin dates from between 1387 and 1409 and was built by the Masters of the Order of Santiago. They had already built a canal creating a bend in the river Tagus. The Island Garden is decorated with a large number of sculptures and fountains.
The Parterre Garden was commissioned by Philip V to a French gardener in 1746. At one end of the garden is a plaza with 14 marble busts of kings of Spain, Roman emperors and historical figures. The garden is flanked by a pit and an iron railing with vases created by Charles III.
The Prince's Garden is the largest of the Gardens of Aranjuez. It covers an area of 150 hectares and has a variety of trees, an artificial lake with free-living pheasants, turkeys and squirrels. A section of the garden, called Anglochina, has three beautiful fountains: Apollo, Narcissus and the Swan. The Prince's Garden also has a jetty, created by Charles IV, where the kings would set off on trips around the Tagus on board their luxurious barges. These boats can be seen in the Museum of the Royal Feluccas. Finally, at the eastern end is the Royal House of Labrador, built by Charles IV which has an extensive collection of statues and clocks.
The garden of Elizabeth II was the last to be built. The first trees were planted in 1830, when Elizabeth II was born and it has stone benches, vases and a bronze statue of the Queen who was known as Niña (she assumed the throne of Spain when she was less than three years old).
Opening hours Gardens of Aranjuez:
Ticket Price Gardens of Aranjuez:
All times and ticket prices are approximate. To confirm times and fares see the official sites.