- The relentless energy, heat noise and bustle of life in Rio is exhilarating, but it can also be exhausting. Sometimes you need a break from the heat and the crowds and Jardim Botanico – the stunning botanical gardens located in the leafy, middle class suburb of the same name – provides the perfect shady getaway from the big city environment. Considered one of the 10 most important gardens of its kind in the world, the Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden was founded in 1808 by John, prince regent of the United Kingdom of Brazil and Portugal (later King John VI), for introducing and acclimatizing economically beneficial plants brought from other tropical regions of the world.The 137 hectares of cool, shady gardens house around 70,000 rare plants, along with 140 species of birds, and countless butterflies. The gardens are easily reached by bus from Ipanema, Leblon, Copacabana and Centro – just take any bus saying 'Jardim Botanico'. Alternatively, a taxi ride will be quick, easy and relatively inexpensive. The area around the gardens is one of Rio's safest.
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- Highly Recommended 2010