Spanning over 22 hectares, the beautiful Jardin du Luxembourg, affectionately called “Luco” by locals sits before the Luxembourg Palace, where the French Senate meets.
Sitting between the Odeon and the National Superior School of Mines, or Mines ParisTech, the park boasts a tranquil atmosphere with plenty to do and see.
Geometrically designed, the park has a large octagonal pond in its center, called the Grand Bassin. The Jardin du Luxembourg is also home to two large, noteworthy fountains on almost opposite ends of the park: one, the Medici's fountain, a large baroque structure designed for María de Médici in 1624; the other, the Observatory Fountain, designed in 1873 and depicting four women holding up a globe, each one representing a continent.
This is definitely a place to breathe fresh, comforting air while taking in an important part of French history. Especially in the summer, the Jardin du Luxembourg’s huge stretches of grass interrupted by brilliant flowerbeds and the odd orchard are an excellent escape from the concrete and chaos of the city. Numerous restaurants regularly hold concerts and offer outdoor seating to enjoy the music with a glass of wine, or warmer indoor tables for more intimacy.
The little ones can also have fun: renting toy boats in the Luxembourg’s Grand Bassin and racing them is always great fun for everyone, especially the kids. There is also a wildly entertaining puppet theatre and a beautiful carousel to get a 360º view of the Luco. And if that’s not enough, pony rides, tennis and swings will definitely do the trick. Just keep in mind that walking on the grass at the Jardin du Luxembourg is not allowed and, therefore, so is cycling and playing ball.
Parisian parks and jardins are definitely most enjoyable during spring and summertime. However, autumn’s ochre palette and winter’s grayish nostalgia can be equally enthralling – all considerations aside, it’s easy to say that the Jardin du Luxembourg is definitely an all-year-round eye-catching experience.
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