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Urban parks: Bois de Boulogne

When we talk about Paris, we think about the Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower and the masterpieces housed at the Louvre. When we talk about Paris, we think about romantic strolls along the Seine, a refined dinner in a restaurant on the Champs-Élysées, an elegant perfume. When we talk about Paris, we think about the remarkable history that this city has lived through. When we talk about Paris, we think about Parc de Bagatelle, the world-famous rose garden that has become a symbol of the French capital. This garden, lush with wonderful little nooks, just may be the most important part of the Bois De Boulogne, an urban park found on the western edge of the 16th arrondissement and the city, along the Seine and on the border between Boulogne-Billancourt and Neuilly-sur-Seine. The Bois De Boulogne is one of the most important green spaces in the city and is visited by over 6 million people every year. One of its main features is how, in some places, it looks like a real forest with centuries-old beech trees, cherry trees, lemon trees, carob trees, hornbeam trees, coastal redwoods, acacias, elms and oaks.

Inside the park you find two man-made lakes, the Lac Inferieur and the Grand Lac, as well as many other attractions for visitors, such as the Longchamp Hippodrome, the Aclimatation Zoo and the Exploradôme Museum. It would appear that Napoleon was in attendance for the first race held in the hippodrome in 1857. 

In addition to the rose garden that contains a good 9,000 plants belonging to 1,200 different species, we also find the Jardin des Serres D’Auteuil within the park, a botanical garden that is home to collections of rare plants and monumental plants. When visiting this famous botanical garden you may find yourself stumbling upon the collection of Canary palms and find the carp aquarium that lies at its feet, or you may be surprised to admire some of the monumental trees, such as the Ginkgo biloba or the evergreen magnolia. The Jardin du Pré-Catelan is an area with indisputable historic value, as it the botanical garden spanning 8 hectares from which the Montgolfier brothers took their first flight with a hot-air balloon.