Urban Parks Forum

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10 of the Best Public Parks in Europe

10 of the Best Public Parks in Europe

The most livable cities have many things in common among the most notable of which are the number of green spaces accessible to the public. Urban parks and gardens are not just spaces that add an aesthetic value to a neighborhood or city. They also play a huge role in people’s mental, physical, and social wellbeing. With so many potential benefits to the public and the community, parks and gardens are essential to urban development. Here’s a look at ten of the best public parks in Europe and some of their top attractions.

City Park (Budapest, Hungary)
City Park Budapest
Location: Budapest, Kós Károly sétány
Top attractions: A number of trees and walkways that date back to 1751, Vajdahunyad Castle, Városligeti Műjégpálya (City Park Ice Rink), the Amusement Park, Budapest Zoo, the Gundel Restaurant, Heroes Square, the Municipal Circus, the Museum of Transport, and the Széchenyi Baths among others

Englischer Garten (Munich, Germany)
Englischer Garten
Location: Englischer Garten 2, 80538 Munich
Top attractions: One of the world’s largest urban parks that covers 900 acres, the Chinesischer Turm, Japanisches Teehaus, Kleinhesseloher See, Monopteros, the Seehaus beer garden, and the Schönfeldwiese meadow

Hyde Park (London, England)
Hyde Park
Location: Hyde Park, London, W2 2UH
Top attractions: One of London’s Royal Parks, covers 350 acres, the Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain, The Rose Garden, Serpentine, Speakers’ Corner; various fountains, monuments, and statues like the Apsley Gate, The Huntress Fountain, Isis, Pan Statue, and the Statue of Achilles

Jardin du Luxembourg (Paris, France)
Jardin du Luxembourg
Location: 75006 Paris
Top attractions: A 25-hectare Parisian garden, the French style garden, the English style garden, the Medici Fountain, the Musee de Luxembourg, the Orangerie, Palais de Luxembourg; numerous fountains, monuments, and statues

Jardin du Mont des Arts (Brussels, Belgium)
Jardin du Mont des Arts
Location: Mont des Arts, 1000 Bruxelles
Top attractions: A park that provides a great view of the Grand-Place, sits close to some of the city’s must-see sights including the Musée Magritte Museum and the Royal Museums of Fine Arts

Parc des Buttes Chaumont (Paris, France)
Parc des Buttes Chaumont
Location: 1 Rue Botzaris, 75019 Paris
Top attractions: One of the largest parks in Paris, beautiful and romantic scenery, spots for breathtaking views of the city, features a grotto, a cliff, waterfall, lake, a suspension bridge and the Temple de la Sibylle

Parque del Buen Retiro Park (Madrid, Spain)
Parque del Buen Retiro Park
Location: Plaza de la Independencia, 7, 28001 Madrid
Top attractions: One of the largest parks in Madrid covering 350 acres, the Casita del Pescador, Casón del Buen Retiro, the Crystal Palace, Estanque del Retiro (Retiro Pond), the Fuente del Ángel Caído (Fountain of the Fallen Angel), the monument to King Alfonso XII, the Palacio de Velázquez, the Paseo de la Argentina (Paseo de las Estatuas or the Statue Walk), the Rosaleda (rose garden), and the Salon de Reinos

Phoenix Park (Dublin, Ireland)
Phoenix Park
Location: Phoenix Park, Dublin 8
Top attractions: A large recreational green space that spans 1752 acres, a vast park where wild fallow deer freely roam, a burial chamber that dates back to more than 5,000 years ago, the Áras an Uachtaráin, Ashtown Castle, Deerfield Residence, Dublin Zoo, the Magazine Fort, the Papal Cross, People’s Gardens, the Phoenix Monument, Phoenix Park Visitor Centre, the Victorian People’s Flower Gardens, and the Wellington Testimonial

Villa Borghese Gardens (Rome, Italy)
Villa Borghese Gardens
Location: 00197 Rome
Top attractions: A 197.7-acre park which is one of the largest in Rome, Casino Borghese, the Galleria Borghese, Villa Giulia, Museo Etrusco (Etruscan Museum), Villa Medici, the Fortezzuola, the French Academy in Rome, a replica of the Globe Theatre, and the Temple of Aesculapius among others

Vondelpark (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
Location: Vondelpark 1071 AA Amsterdam
Top attractions: A vast expanse of green space located at the heart of the city, popular local and tourist attraction, the Open Lucht Theater (open air theatre), a rose garden, the monuments and sculptures, and cafes and restaurants

A Walk in Mungyeong Saejae Provincial Park

A Walk in Mungyeong Saejae Provincial Park

Mungyeong is located roughly two to three hours by car or bus from Seoul. The city is part of Gyeongsangbuk Province and home to tourist attractions foremost of which is Mungyeong Saejae — a famous mountain pass in South Korea. Mungyeong Saejae Provincial Park sits in a vast area surrounded by mountains. A visit to this park can be full of surprises. A few hours of meandering inside the scenic spot may not be enough to see its stunning and breathtaking sights. Here are some of park’s sights and things to do.

Museum of Old Roads

Formerly known as the Mungyeongsaejae Museum, the Museum of Old Roads is one of the first park attractions visitors will see while heading into the heart of the park. The museum’s beautiful architecture is hard to miss. The museum provides a glimpse into the history of traditional roads in the country.

The Boundary Gates and Castle Walls

A walk in Mungyeong Saejae Provincial Park is like taking a trip back in time. There are three imposing boundary gates that date back to hundreds of years. The castle walls are equally impressive. A trek to these gates is a feast to the eyes and senses with the mountain fresh air and breathtaking scenery.

Mungyeongsaejae KBS Drama Studio

Mungyeong Saejae Provincial Park is home to the Mungyeongsaejae KBS Drama Studio. The said studio was built by the Korean Broadcasting System (KBS) as a filming location for historical dramas. The traditional buildings and structures reflect the architecture of the Joseon period including tile-roofed homes and thatched houses.

Traditional Korean Food & Drinks

Experience dining at one of the food stalls to be found in the park and prepare for a treat. The pajeon (Korean pancake made with scallions as one of the main ingredients) makes a perfect pairing for Mungyeong’s omija makgeolli or traditional liquor. The city is famous for its omija or berries which is purported to be the best in Korea. Or you can enjoy a cup of omija tea as you sit and enjoy the view in the midst of the park’s beautiful scenery.

Two to three hours in Mungyeong Saejae Provincial Park is not enough to enjoy its stunning sights. So if you are planning to visit, consider a full day’s trip. Or better yet, plan to stay in the city and give yourself more than a day to explore this amazing park.