Inaugurated in 1834, Jardim Marques de Oliveira, is a romantic concept, with the shadow of its great magnolias, its imposing lilies, the colour of its camellias and the sounds of the central lake.
Jardim de São Lázaro is the oldest municipal garden in Porto.
Its name comes from the old medieval leprosarium, which was installed there at the beginning of the 16th century and was demolished in the 18th century.
This fresh garden is a pleasant surprise for those who pass by, because it is very well cared for and leafy.
It was designed by João José Gomes, the first municipal gardener of Porto, and still presents its original design today.
The fountain, the bandstand, and the sculptures scattered around the garden, by several nationally renowned artists such as Soares dos Reis, stand out.
During the Portuguese Civil War, Porto was surrounded by a siege between July 1832 and August 1833. It was a very heavy siege for the people of Porto: to the attacks of the D. Miguel troops were added silent enemies such as cholera, typhus, hunger and cold, which transformed the beautiful trees of the “Invicta” into firewood for the population.
On 27 January 1833, King Pedro IV ordered the construction of the Garden of São Lazaro, dedicated to the women of this city, to somehow compensate them for the hard trials faced during the Siege. It was intended to be a place for the ladies of Porto
Although modest in size and sparse in sight, it quickly became popular with the fine society – a must-see place for the families of Porto.
For 30 years, this miniature Public Walk, was the centre of the city’s fancy and fashion.
With no view of the Douro valley, no wide and airy walks, it nevertheless contains a soft perfume, which contrasts with the urban environment in which it is inserted.
It is the meeting point for retired people who play cards, a point of passage of many places, a place of rest for tourists. Close to the Faculty of Fine Arts, it is also very frequented by students.
To the east of the garden is the Municipal Public Library and to the south, the magnificent baroque façade of the old convent of St. Lazaro, attributed to Nicolau Nasoni.
The garden is the only one in the city that is still surrounded by a railing.
It is one of the most beautiful romantic gardens in Porto.