The Oude Hortus is a beautiful garden in the middle of the city centre. Here you have a lovely escape from town life. Relax and enjoy the surroundings as well as have coffee or lunch at the café Ginkgo, where you can appreciate an outstanding view over the garden.
Next to the University Museum lies the Oude Hortus, an unique and historical garden. Walk around and you will discover a green oasis with a large collection of plants and trees. The 250-year old Ginkgo biloba is one of the oldest known specimens outside of Japan. The Hortus is made up by a collection of smaller gardens, for instance, a cottage- and a medical garden.
The greenhouses in the Oude Hortus are the oldest academic greenhouses that still exist in The Netherlands. They were built between 1906 and 1908 and were once used for research and education. Now the greenhouses hold a various selection of plants and flowers, like the impressive Victoria Longwood. This is a giant water lily that blossoms in the Greenhouses during the summer. The species has very large leaves, up to 1,5 meters in diameter, that float on the water's surface on a submerged stalk.
Museum cafe Ginkgo
Stop by at our stylish museum café Ginkgo for lunch or a refreshing drink. The sunny terrace offers beautiful views over the garden and the historic greenhouses.
A large group of motivated volunteers look after the museum garden. Every Tuesday they weed, plant, trim and sweep to keep the garden looking its best.
Since the 17th century people use the orangery to protect exotic crops against the cold Dutch weather. The Oude Hortus has two orangeries: the museum cafe Ginkgo and a smaller orangery. The smaller one was built in 1724 and is the oldest hortus-orangery still in use in the Netherlands. Container plants from warmer climates still spend their winters here.