- Discover an amazing UNESCO Biosphere Reserve
- See the world-famous Avenue of Royal Palms
- 500 species of orchid and almost 1000 palm tree varieties
Exploring the famed Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden is like stepping into another world. The ecological sanctuary was created in 1808 by King John VI of Portugal, at the foot of Corcovado Mountain, and now houses one of the most impressive collections of plantlife in the world. Led by a guide so that you get the most from your tour, you’ll see huge water lilies from the Amazon rainforest, a greenhouse containing some 500 beautiful types of orchid, and many other fascinating sights including a Japanese garden, an old gunpowder factory and several spectacular fountains and sculptures. After a 90-minute walk, you’ll then have a couple of hours left over to wander around on your own and really get a feel for this amazing place.
Stroll along the Avenue of Royal Palms, composed of 134 towering palm trees that all grew from a single tree and were planted when the gardens first opened. This UNESCO biosphere reserve now operates as a research institute for botanical studies - the Amazon of course contains untold numbers of rare and as yet undiscovered plants and animals. In the shadow of the Christ the Redeemer statue you’ll be immersed in an idyllic and tranquil atmosphere, punctuated by the sounds of wildlife including monkeys and toucans, before being conveniently transported back to your hotel. This Rio de Janeiro gift experience is a fab way to cool off and be amazed by lush plantlife drawn from South America and further afield.