Palm trees by the entrance to the garden
Laid out in 1912 by the Jerónimos Monastery, the Tropical Botanical Garden was once called Colonial Garden, then Garden of the Colonies, and later Tropical Garden. At the moment, it’s trying to recover from years of neglect, but remains one of Lisbon’s most beautiful green spaces.
Ducks, geese, peacocks, swans and chickens roam around the garden
It occupies a botanical park of 5 hectares (12 acres), with flora from the different continents. Most of it is of tropical or subtropical origin, and from Portugal’s former colonies. It also features 18th-century marble sculptures by the Italian artists Giuseppe Mazzuoli and Bernardino Ludovici, and a palace from the 1600s, Calheta Palace. That was the residence of the Counts of Calheta, until it was acquired by King João V in 1726. It’s a baroque palace that currently houses an exhibition space and a library.
Calheta Palace hosts temporary exhibitions
Some pieces of art and architecture spread around the garden date from 1940, from the Portuguese World Exhibition. They include tile panels with colonial themes, busts of Africans and Asians, and the Arch of Macau, which is the entrance to an Oriental garden.
Busts of the native people of the lands colonized by Portugal are spread around the garden
Of the different greenhouses, the most curious is the coffee greenhouse, but what draws most of the attention of visitors is the fowl population -- peacocks, ducks, geese, swans and chickens -- waddling around the giant palm trees and on the ponds.
The garden is a peaceful place to escape the crowds of tourists in Belém
How to Get to the Tropical Botanical Garden
Take the Cascais train from Cais do Sodré station, and you arrive in Belém in 7 minutes. The garden is a short walk from the station in Belém.
The always-packed tram 15 also has a stop a few feet from the gate.
You may ride the train and the tram (as well as the city’s metro, buses and funiculars) for free with the Lisboa Card.
Largo dos Jerónimos, Belém
Admission and Tickets to the Tropical Botanical Garden
Admission to the garden is €4.00 for adults, €2.00 for children between the ages of 10 and 17, and free for those under 10. A family ticket (two adults and two children) is €10. It’s not included in the Lisboa Card.
Opens every day
The Jerónimos Monastery, Maritime Museum, and National Archaeology Museum are across the road. The Royal Botanical Garden of Ajuda and Ajuda Palace are about a 15-minute walk up the hill.