The Parque Biologico de Gaia has been the most surprising place in a long time. Located on the N222 in Gaia, this park will amaze you with all the amphibians, birds, insects and many other species that you will discover. A pleasant way to spend a great time with your family or your friends.
A Protected Reserve
To begin with, Parque Biologico de Gaia is where hundreds of different species meet and give life to this protected reserve. The park has its own shelter. It welcomes animals in need of intensive care in order re-introduce them in the nature. Rich from its 35 hectares of Nature, the park’s objective is pedagogical. People of all ages can connect with the environment education.
Furthermore, it shows the commitment of the town on the preservation of the region’s landscape. As the urbanization increases, the country is slowly losing its green zones.
In the 70’s, Environmental Defense Associations and Nature Conservation organizations have been solicited by schools together with others institutions to create classes and visits in an appropriated place.
At its origine the park was a temporary park and the working team started to lay down the path, build the spaces for the different animals, the lakes…
Since Portugal was lacking in knowledge in its different environmental initiations centers, the NATO Modern Society Challenges Committee supported a study in different places in Europe, thus gathering ideas for the project they would develop.
As a result, the park opens in 1983 and answers to a need from the population. Therefore it became the perfect escape from the urban life just a couple of kilometers away from Porto.
What will you see?
First, you will be welcome by a gigantic real size Brachiosaurus! A dinosaur that lived on Earth about 154–153 million years ago.
After purchasing your ticket, you have access to the park and it’s time to open your eyes!
First you will come across beautifuls storks and this is just a beginning!
Along the 3km pathway of the park you will meet with many different species, green landscapes, lakes, little farms, and much more.
In order for the people to admire the animals, the park arranged some little houses where you hide inside.
In other words, this will prevent the animals to clearly see you and run away to their hiding points. All the animals are in an environment recreating their natural habitat.
Above all, the otters, storks, owls, birds, foxes and all the other species are all very alive and seem to be very happy in this environment.
All the trees, plants and vegetals are identified on a board discretly set in front of each of them. It explains what specie you are looking at.
Ponte das Barcas by Barão de Forrester
Besides this, you will come across educational expositions, where you will learn about the portuguese environment.
In addition, you will step into very typical “quintas” informing you about the surroundings and you will meet with our new friends the scarecrows!
During our visit the Biorama was closed for renovations so we missed it, however we will for sure come back to see it.
The path is easy to walk, well arranged and it will take you about 2 hours to go around.
Once you are done, you can take the time to visit the small store next to the casher. You will find some biological products of the region and a selection of books (mainly in portuguese) about environment in the region at very reasonable prices.
During your walk in the park, we advise you to take a bottle of water with you (especially on very hot days) as you won’t be crossing any stores or bars during the walk. At the reception, you will find a cafetera/restaurant but if you prefer to bring your own food, you will be able to enjoy a nice pic nic area.
The cherry on the top
The most amazing part of it is the price!
- 3€ for one adult (18/64 years old)
- 1€ for the kids (7/17 years old) and for the seniors (+65 years old)
- Free for the kids under 7 years old
In conclusion, the park is great and the price is affordable to everyone and most importantly it lets everyone connect with Mother Nature and is a great moment with kids, family members or friends. A moment far from the urbanization. – Breathe…-