Park of Necessidades (Tapada das Necessidades)
To the left of the front façade of the palace and marble obelisk and fountain is this hidden gem where few people visit. Once the palace gardens and hunting ground, this National Forest Reserve is home to rare species of trees, ponds, forested areas, exotic plants, statues, fountains and lawns ideal for picnicking or chilling with a book. Édouard Manet visited this park in 1859, and it's said the gardens inspired him to paint his famous masterpiece "Le déjeuner sur l'herbe" ("The Luncheon on the Grass"), now in Paris' Musée d'Orsay. King Ferdinand had the gardens designed in the English manner as was the fashion in the 19th century. Later, King Pedro commissioned the circular glasshouse and King Carlo had the tennis courts built. There are three lakes; Palmeira, Estrelícias and Duque de Lafões, surrounded by exotic vegetation. If you're able to cast your gaze beyond the grounds, there are fabulous views of the 24th April bridge and the Tejo river as a backdrop.
October to March,
Daily: 08h00 - 19h00, Weekends: 10h00 - 19h00
April to September,
Daily: 08h00 - 18h00, Weekends: 10h00 - 18h00
Getting to the Necessidades Palace