Discover Benelux, Issue 22, October 2015

Page 44

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Discover Benelux | Rotterdam Special | Best Sights & Attractions

To make the most of your visit, Trompenburg offers walks and guided tours around the park and gardens.


Hidden in the heart of Rotterdam is a green gem of tranquil nature. The Trompenburg Gardens & Arboretum, located just east of the centre, offers every city dweller a welcome escape from the bustling urban life. As one of the Netherlands' botanical gardens, Trompenburg houses the national collection of oak trees, counting 300 species that are spread out across the estate. With autumn settling in, this month is a magnificent time to see the yellow, orange and red-coloured leaves falling from the trees – some of which are over 150 years old. According to Adelien Vis, who works at Trompenburg, another great time to visit is in spring. “We also have the national collection of rhododendrons with 600 species. When these are in bloom the whole park is covered in hues of pink, red and white. This also coincides the bloom of our wisterias, adding even more colour to the spectacle.”

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Vis counts herself lucky that she gets to enjoy the eight hectares of green gardens, ponds and forestry every day. “It is the peace and quiet that I love the most. Being surrounded by nature helps to recharge your batteries, especially when you live in a busy city like Rotterdam.” To make the most of your visit, Trompenburg offers walks and guided tours. These will take you around the park, including the Victorian gardens in English landscape style, the 1920s formal gardens with its rectangular sections and the garden from the 1960s when mixed planting was in style. “With a tour you will dis-

cover so much more. The guides will talk about the history of the gardens and also give advice on how to grow certain plants.” Trompenburg is currently also creating a new garden on the estate. “We're going to grow a food forest with edible plants, including fruit trees and berry bushes, in particular unknown species. This is a reflection on modern landscaping, as growing your own organic food is increasingly popular nowadays,” she says. The first crop from the garden will be ripe early next year.

Visit Trompenburg this Christmas This winter Trompenburg will host their Christmas Market on 11-13 December, starting off with an evening opening on the Friday when the gardens will be beautifully lit with festive lights. At the market, plants will be on sale as well as beautiful gifts and artisan food articles.