I always miss the green of other cities when coming back home to sweet Lisbon. But looking for a garden in one of the oldest cities in the world (older than Rome!) can be challenging. Urban planning started late, and only as a consequence of the 1755 earthquake. Lisbon’s gardens are usually “stone gardens”. Particularly in the old town: A fountain in the middle of a tiny square, 5 trees surrounded by roses and 3 tables with old men playing dominoes and discussing last weekend’s football results.
Lisbon grew in the 50s and a new residential neighborhood was born in a flat area near Campo Pequeno. A modern green park was also added to the “Avenidas Novas” area (literally meaning new avenues): Gulbenkian Garden. The park was created in 1969, with an area of 7.5 hectares designed by the landscape architect Gonçalo Ribeiro Telles. It’s part of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Gulbenkian Museum and the José de Azeredo Perdigão Modern Art Centre, making it a cultural landmark.
There are two lakes built in the garden, the larger lake, located in the centre of the park is perfect for relaxing and taking a break from the city. There is a great coffee shop at the park.
The garden also has an open-air amphitheater. Check their agenda! With a bit of luck you might step into any of the amazing free events ranging from dance to music. Every year during the first two weeks of August there’s a Jazz festival held in the gardens!