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Best botanical gardens to visit in the Amsterdam Area

The Amsterdam Area is brimming with historic and modern gardens full of colourful blooms and diverse natural wonders to explore. From extraordinary plots housed in fairy-tale castles to rustic woods and expansive parks, we’ve compiled a guide to some of the best botanical gardens to visit in the region.


Image from Ben van Melzen Photography

The magical Castle Muiderslot is over 700 years old, making it one of the oldest and best-preserved castles in the Netherlands. Adding to its fairy-tale charm is its beautiful gardens, which are still used to grow vegetables and herbs. Between March and November, the garden is tended to by volunteers who are only too happy to teach visitors about forgotten vegetables and herbs that can be used for medicine, dyes and decoration. Behind the castle, you’ll find a plum orchard - a source of inspiration for Pieter Cornelisz Hooft (sometimes referred to as ‘the Dutch Shakespeare’), who was resident in Muiderslot castle in the 17th century.

Kasteel Museum Sypesteyn

Garden at castle-museum Sypesteyn Loosdrecht
Image from

The final heir to the Van Sypesteyn family, Henri van Sypesteyn (1857-1937), built this magnificent Castle Museum to preserve his family’s 500-year lineage. Located in the middle of the Vecht region, Kasteel Museum Sypesteyn houses a fascinating art collection and exhibition on the Van Sypesteyn family, while the beautiful garden is perfect for a walk. Be sure to check opening times as the castle is closed during the winter months.

Theetuin Weesp

Tea house 'Blauw' in Weesp
People sitting outside Bar Blauw
Image from Pauline Arkesteijn

You’ll find this romantic tea garden located next to one of Weesp’s former bastions. Built in 1674, the Bakkersschans bastion was once a part of the town's fortifications but has now been transformed into an oasis surrounded by lush greenery. Garden enthusiasts will love the tranquil atmosphere and can enjoy some Dutch delicacies in the adjoining restaurant housed in a building that was once used to store munitions.


Just east of Amsterdam, you’ll find the walled city of Naarden, part of Amsterdam’s historic defence line and one of Europe’s best-preserved fortified towns. After you’ve wandered through the city head out to the fortress and walk along the unique star-shaped moats and gorgeous green areas with small thickets. And just outside of Naarden you can find one of the oldest and most beautiful nature reserves in the Netherlands, the Naardermeer.

The Singer Sculpture Garden

Couple walking in Singer Laren Museum sculpture garden
Image from Singer Laren

Art fans should take a trip to the Singer Laren Museum sculpture garden. Designed by renowned landscape architect Piet Oudolf — a leading figure of the ‘New Perennial’ movement who designed the gardens of New York’s iconic High Line — the free sculpture garden features work by contemporary Dutch artists, including Guido Geelen, Maria Roosen and Famke van Wijk. Based on a theme of connection, the works meld culture and nature and are ideally situated among seasonal fauna, referencing art and time.

Ouderkerk aan de Amstel

A boat in the water near the church bridge (Kerkbrug) over the river Amstel in the village of Oudekerk aan de Amstel.
Image from Koen Smilde

As far as quaint villages go, Ouderkerk aan de Amstel offers a respite from the hustle and bustle of Amsterdam and is just a short bike ride away. This 12th-century town is best reached by cycling along the picturesque Amstel River, where stunning vistas await. Ouderkerk aan de Amstel is also home to the oldest Jewish cemetery in the Netherlands. This restful spot with tombstones and simple gardens was opened in 1614. Not strictly a garden (sorry folks), the nearby Ouderkerkerplas also offers beaches, a nature reserve and various walking and cycling paths to explore.

Pinetum Blijdenstein Botanical Gardens

Beautiful pathway and big trees in the green forest at the Pinetum Blijdenstein botanical gardens in Hilversum.
Image from Shutterstock

Tucked away in a residential suburb within walking distance from the centre of Hilversum, Pinetum Blijdenstein is a stunning botanical garden. Whilst the greenhouses are packed with various tropical plants, the grounds are home to various tree species, including blooming rhododendrons and one of the most important collections of conifers in the world. Pinetum regularly organises exhibitions, tours, lectures and activities for green-fingered little ones.

Hortus Botanicus - Vrije Universiteit

The neighbourhood of Amstelveen, just south of Amsterdam, is a haven for green spaces. Wander through the Zuidas botanical garden - an oasis of calm with century-old trees and a greenhouse holding a vast collection of cacti and succulents. The entrance is free so that everyone can enjoy all the hidden corners, including a miniature Chinese landscape garden and Bonsai display. And don't miss De Braak - a national monument park designed by Chris Broerse, famous for its natural landscaping using wild native plants that are now rare in the Netherlands and Dr Jac P. Thijssepark, a wilderness sanctuary filled with woodland vegetation, water and rare plants.