Sep 10

Lisbon with kids: Jardim Garcia d’Orta (Sound Garden)

by in ...with kids!

Lisbon is full of lovely parks, although many are a little off the beaten track. To celebrate the warmer weather, we’re showcasing some of our favorites. This week, the Jardim Garcia d’Orta… a garden of sound.

Tucked between the Pavilhao Atlantico and the FIL, overlooking the river Tejo, the Jardim Garcia d’Orta is the Expo’s best kept secret.

Jardim Garcia d'Orta

Jardim Garcia d’Orta

A treat for kids tired of being quiet, with plenty of space for older siblings and parents to stretch out on the grass or people-watch in the shade of the nearby riverside promenade.

Giant musical instruments “grow” among the plantings, just begging to be banged, clanged and thumped on. There is even a set of brass plates for dancing, and each one rings out a different note when stepped on.

Making music at the Jardim Garcia d'Orta

Making music at the Jardim Garcia d’Orta

The truth is, the entire waterfront in the Expo is one long series of lovely parks and gardens, with giant girafes, strange sculptures and even a couple playgrounds hidden along its length. The park is less and less landscaped as you go north, finally merging into the natural state of the riverbank near the Vasco de Gama bridge.

But the Garcia d’Orta Sound Garden is special, and it’s one of those places that my kids keep begging to go back to. After all, how often do your parents tell you to make all the noise you want?

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