Tell people you’re going to Amsterdam for the plant scene and you might get some knowing looks, but a trip to De Hortus Botanical Gardens will bring you to a state of zen that you’ll actually remember. Founded in 1638 and housing some of the very same plants and trees it began with, De Hortus has built upon the original medicinal collection and now boasts tranquil gardens and a large, three-climate greenhouse with high canopy walkways to oversee the vast collection. Each plant has its own story; look out for schoonmoedersstoel – a plump, spiky cactus whose name translates as mother-in-law’s seat, and the gympie gympie nettle from Australia – the most painful plant in the world. With a plant hunt map, a family of turtles in the pond and a butterfly house, there’s plenty to entertain kids too. The Orangery café offers good coffee and cake, with a three course lunch ticket option available (€32.50) for those who'd like more of an occasion.
De Hortus BotanicusAmsterdam's other plant scene has something for all the family
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