Parc Floral de la Source, Orleans, Loire Valley
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A few kilometres south of Orleans town centre you can visit one of the most impressive attractions in the city at the Parc Floral de la Source. The gardens are now listed as one of the 'Remarkable Gardens of France'.
Exploring the Parc Floral de la Source in Orleans
France This Way comment: the Jardin de la Source is an extensive area of gardens and parklands that also includes the 'source' of the Loiret river - hence the name of the gardens - and a perfect place to explore if you are looking for some peace and tranquility after exploring the town centre of Orleans.
There is a great deal to see here, so we suggest you allow at least a couple of hours for a complete visit, more if you are a garden enthusiast, are bringing your children with you or plan to have a picnic!
Although there are various other activities at the Parc Floral de la Source, it is the gardens that are the principal highlights. Of course, which of these is most interesting will depend on which time of year you are visiting so here we do little more than mention the main garden areas - you will discover others when you visit...
- The source of the Loiret river, where you can see the Loiret emerging from the ground (in fact the Loiret is a tributary of the loire which has gone subterranean a few kilometres away and reemerges here) and walk along the banks of the river
- The Jardin de Formes, one of the first garden areas you discover here and lovely all year round with several trees carefully pruned to have the shape of clouds.
- The Jardin d'Iris, very pretty if you can visit in the second half of May
- The Jardin de dahlias, at its best in August and September
- The Jardin des Fuchsias and the Tropical zone, among the highlights for visitors in July and August
- The Jardin des Roses, perhaps our favourite because you can sit on one of the benches and overlook the rose garden and the large pond area it surrounds. The roses are in flower from June to September
- The rock garden, the prairie garden...
You are given a map of the gardens when you arrive so that you don't miss anything important.
Other highlights in the Parc Floral de la Source
The animal and wildlife collections here are very interesting, in particular we enjoyed the butterfly house which had the biggest and most colourful butterflies we remember seeing, and also the large aviaries which containing various tropical birds. Other wildlife includes flamingoes and ducks on the river, and donkeys and alpaca.
An extensive children play area near the 'castle' provides hours of entertainment to younger children. Mini-golf is available, and also there is a mini-train that operates through the parc.
There is a cafe and shop next to the entrance to the Jardin de la Source.
Getting here and visitor information
Note that an admission charge is payable, 6 euros per adult at the time of our visit.
There is of course parking if you are arriving by car. Follow the A71 and take the exit for 'la Source' or the RN20 and take exit for Saint-Cyr-en-Val.
You can also reach the Parc Floral de la Source by tram or bus from the city centre: take tram line A or bus line 20.
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Map of Parc Floral de la Source, Orleans and places to visit
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Address: Orléans, Loiret, Loire Valley, 45000, France || GPS: latitude 47.8475, longitude 1.93778
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Sightseeing & tourist attractions to visit nearby
- Parc Floral de la Source: remarkable garden
- Saint-Cyr-en-Val: ville fleurie 4* (3km)
- Olivet: ville fleurie 4* (3km)
- Orleans: town of art and history (6km)
- Saint-Jean-de-la-Ruelle: ville fleurie 4* (9km)
- Fleury-les-Aubrais: ville fleurie 4* (9km)
- Les prés-Culand: remarkable garden (18km)
- Beaugency: recommended detour (24km)
- Arboretum des grandes bruyères: remarkable garden (26km)
- Abbaye de Saint Benoît sur Loire (Saint-Benoit-sur-Loire Abbey): religious monument (28km)