The Jardin du Luxembourg or the garden of Luxembourg is one of the greenest places in Paris. It is located in the sixth arrondissement and remains the second largest public park in entire Paris.
Stretching across an area of 60 acres, this garden is a remarkable sight and has been one of the most preferred destinations for visitors arriving in Paris. Its location in the heart of Paris has made it the ideal spot for relaxation by Parisians as well as tourists and remains the perfect example of Renaissance garden design.
With its array of splendid trees, fountains, and majestic statues of many mythological figures and prominent personalities of the time, the Jardin du Luxembourg is one of the most beautiful attractions in Paris. Here is a collection of incredible facts about the Jardin du Luxembourg that you may find interesting and informative for your next Paris city tour.
The origin of the Luxembourg gardens dates back to 1611 under the Duke of Piney-Luxembourg. Maria de Medici, King Henry IV’s widow, later acquired this garden and built to imitate the Petit Palace of her hometown in Florence. It is said that Maria de Medici planted around 2000 elm trees and flowerbeds to build the garden.
Many prominent gardeners and architects were hired for building the garden including Tommaso Francini, Salomon de Brosse, and Jacques Boyceau de la Barauderie. In 1630, Maria de Medici expanded the garden by purchasing an additional 30 hectares into its original eight hectares of land.
A parterre dominates the garden and lay in the form of precise geometrical patterns. The large octagonal basin contains a jet of water in its center and sculptures of numerous French queens and saints align the terraces above. It has sculptures of Marie de Medici, Margaret of Provence, Bathild and Clotilde, Anne Marie Louise d’Orleans, etc.
Medici fountain is the most famous and iconic fountain in the Luxembourg garden. The engineer Thomas Francine constructed it in the 1630’s upon the request of Maria de Medici Florentine. It features an Italian-style portico with several alterations like a lengthened basin and mythological characters that were added in 1863.
The presence of a large number of statues is one of the major attractions in the Luxembourg garden. The Queen of France and illustrious women is one of the most famous sculptures in the Jardin du Luxembourg. It is a series of 20 statues placed in the right and left terraces above the garden’s main basin.