Friday Fun: Places to Meditate and Contemplate

I’m not really the action holiday type of person (unless visiting museums or wandering down cobbled medieval streets counts as action). Not for me wildwater rafting, bungee jumping or cycling, although I do enjoy hiking at a leisurely pace in the mountains (and skiing in winter). But nor do I enjoy beach holidays where you just roast in the sun. However, I could imagine spending weeks in each of the places below, reading my books. They have just the right amount of beauty and shade.

Water is always a restful feature to have in a garden – unless you have small children or curious pets.
Create a little oasis in your own house, as Patishandika in Arch Daily has done.
Courtyard of Loma House in Ecuador, designed by architect Quizhpe.
Another dreamy courtyard, designed by Khosla Associates.
The charm of the overgrown garden in East Sussex, from
But of course the best gardens for meditation are the Zen gardens of Japan, from
OK, maybe this beach in the shade. Finca Beach House from TripAdvisor.


Friday Fun: French Urban Gardens

Spring is almost ready to spring, or so we hope! It seems to come earlier in England than in other parts of the world, but this week my pictures take me  to France. Paris and other French cities may not have quite as many green spaces as London does, but it’s always a pleasure to discover some of them, however small. French gardens may be famous for their severe geometric precision, but this is the more natural, unkempt style.

My favourite park in Paris: Parc Buttes-Chaumont, outrageously romantic, with an amazing view towards Sacre Coeur from the temple.
But it’s also about finding green spaces everywhere you go: cafes (here in Saint-Germain).
… along disused railway lines (from Time Out France)
…in little residential impasses (much like the mews of London). From
Another passage Grenelle from 15e arrondissement.
The famous flower market between Notre Dame and the Palais de la Justice. From La Compagnie.
Side streets in Montmartre, from
Jardin Sauvage Saint-Vincent in Montmartre.
Japanese garden from the Pantheon-Bouddhique, 16e.