The Taconera Gardens, the oldest in Pamplona, comprise a French-style orchard in the centre of the city. Designed in 1830, they still preserve a Romantic feel. With the construction of the walled enclosure, the Taconera Bastion was positioned there, eventually becoming part of the gardens in the 19th century.
Among its carefully spaced out trees are beeches, leafy magnolias, and a ginkgo biloba. Accompanying us along the walk, are laurels, holly bushes and a sequoia some 40 metres tall. One of the most striking trees if the Japanese pagoda, which can be found in the picturesque Café Vienés, the former bike hire kiosk.
One aspect guaranteed to catch visitors’ attention is the small open-air zoo in the moats of the former stronghold. Sharing this space are ducks, swans, deer, peacocks and rabbits.
This garden is also a small open-air museum, where various sculptures look down from their great height. The central walk passes the Monument to Julián Gayarre, the work of Fructuoso Orduna (1950). On one of the side walkways there is a bust in homage to the Burlada-born composer, Hilarión Eslava. Near the Café Vienés is the Monument to the Beneficiencia (Benevolent), otherwise known as “la Mari Blanca”. Next to the Taconera Gardens, the Antoniutti Park is a space designed for skating, with a speed track and a skate park.
ROUTE OF THE PARKS AND GARDENS
The route begins in the Media Luna Park, continues through the Taconera Gardens, the Citadel and the Vuelta del Castillo Park and ends in the Yamaguchi Park and Galaxy Garden. In the Taconera Gardens you will find the following trees:
Sign 7. Taxus baccata - Spiral-pruned yew tree
This specimen has been historically a reference in Taconera Park because of its spiral shape. Al tejo le gustan los lugares frescos y sombríos, quizás eso sea lo que le haga poder vivir más de un milenio."
Sign 8: Fraxinus excelsior - Ash-tree known as ""the survivor"
You are now near the oldest tree in the park. This specimen dates from the time when magnificent elm trees covered most part of the park. Those elm trees died in the 1980s as they got infected by a fungus. Observando este árbol puedes hacerte una idea de la belleza del arbolado en este lugar en tiempos pasados.
Sign 9: Styphnolobium japonicum - Sophora japonica ""pendula"
The twisted and fanciful shape of this tree gives it a magical and suggestive appearance. This old specimen needs support – like canes allowing its ancient structure tu endure. Si te fijas bien podrás localizar oquedades que dan cobijo a la fauna del lugar.
Sign 10. Central flowerbed alley
Flowerbeds will entice you with all their range of colours and possible textures. In each season we can observe colourful visual symphonies. : en primavera violas, prímulas, tulipanes o jacintos; en verano begonias, tagetes, dalias y olorosas salvias.
Árbol de gran talla, entre 50 y 80 metros de altura, forma cónica y follaje escuamiforme muy denso y regular. Son las más voluminosas del reino vegetal, llegando a los 1500 metros cúbicos de madera por ejemplar.
One of the tallest trees in the world. Just think that it can grow as high as the length of a professional football pitch! Plus, it can live up to 3,000 years!
- The kestrel is the public enemy no. 1 of sparrows and other small birds. Its ability to prey on caged birds in balconies and windowsills – and devour them on the spot, is noteworthy.
- Late evening in May and in June you will frequently hear a high-pitched and constant sound, repeated every few seconds, in parks and tree-lined avenues. It is the call of the del scops owl, a small bird of prey which remains silent and still when somebody approaches it.
- The swift eats and sleeps whilst flying, tirelessly. Quite fond of cities, you will find it in Pamplona between May and August.
- Blackbirds love to hop on the grass and sing as the sun goes down, with extraordinarily fluty notes.
- Robins are squat birds, their reddish-orange breast being a giveaway.
- The Red Kite is one of the easiest diurnal birds of prey to distinguish by its orange colour. It has a wingspan of 170 centimetres. It flies over the city like a sentry in search of other birds and rodents.
- You will easily recognise serins in tree tops because of their lemon yellow colour.
Many nest boxes are scattered in the city’s parks - Taconera Gardens, Vuelta del Castillo Park, Yamaguchi and Arga river Park, to attract birds. Some are for kestrels, some for scops owls and some for small birds like sparrows.