A nature lover will surely be excited by the Botanical Garden in Cluj-Napoca. Enjoying this place of heaven is guaranteed. The garden was founded in 1920 by Professor Alexandru Borza, a botanist and Member of the Romanian Academy.
Located in the southern part of Cluj-Napoca, the botanical garden is spread over an area of almost 14 hectares. The garden contains over 10 000 plant species from all corners of the world. The Romanian vegetation is greatly represented trough the plants from the whole Transylvania. There are a few must-see attractions: the Japanese Garden and the Roman Garden, with archaeological vestiges from the ancient Roman settlement of Napoca.
The garden is organised in several sectors: ornamental, phytogeographical, systematic and economic section. Recently a new sector was added for the visitors with impaired visibility - the greenhouse complex. The Botanical Institute hosts the Botanical Museum at the ground floor, with a collection of about 7,000 exhibits. These exhibits are grouped in collections of scientific or economic importance, but also in the evolutionary order from the plants with a simple organization to complex ones. On the first floor of the building, one can find the Herbarium of the Botanical Garden, the largest and most important one in the country, with 750 000 pressed plants.
Decorative horticultural species and varieties can be found in the ornamental sector. Red rosemary containing about 250 varieties of roses, tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, dahlias, mugs, gladioli and lilies will delight every visitor.
Several themes plants from different geographic regions can be found in the phytogeographical section. Here you can find two above-mentioned must-see attractions - the Japanese Garden, arranged in the traditional "gyo-no-niwa" style and representation the East, and the Roman Garden, with the statue of Ceres.
The systematic sector groups the plants according to the family and their phylogenetic evolution. This sector may help one have a better overview of the plants' evolution.
The economic section groups plants according to their use: food, technical, fodder, honey and tincture. One may find it very educating to start guessing which sector each plant can be attributed to, and do this while going from the Botanical Garden to the accommodation of their vacation.
Six compartments compose the greenhouse complex: the aquarium, the palmarium, the Mediterranean and Australian herb section, the section with succulent plants, the bromeliacea sera and the orchid and fern section. In my opinion, the best part is seeing the waterlilies, near the palmarium. As a child, this was the thing I loved the most in the Botanical Garden.
Enjoying the Botanical Garden in Cluj-Napoca is guaranteed. They have a nice offer, and I hope it will last for a few years from now on. If you bring a book with you, the entry in the Botanical Garden is free.
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