These Are The Most Beautiful Gardens You Can Visit In The UK
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These Are The Most Beautiful Gardens You Can Visit In The UK

Prepare to go green with (garden) envy

Obviously it’s nice to be warm, but it’s never too cold for a waltz around a pretty garden. Whether you’re making the most of the spring sun or you’re just in need of a weekend adventure, here’s our pick of the most beautiful gardens in the UK that you can visit no matter the season.

The Most Beautiful Gardens You Can Visit In The UK

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Borde Hill house and gardens in spring

Borde Hill

Borde Hill Lane, Haywards Heath RH16 1XP

Visit Borde Hill in West Sussex this spring, a Grade II* listed garden set within 383 acres of heritage parkland. There’s the Spring Plant Fair for horticulturalists, and a brand new Eco Trail, too.

(Image © Emli Bendixen)

Kew Gardens Unsplash

Kew Gardens

Richmond, TW9 3AE

Sprawling across over 300 acres, the historic Kew Gardens (founded in 1759), lays claim to the world’s largest botanical and mycological collections in the world. The UNESCO world heritage site is much more than the beautiful Victorian greenhouse architecture we’re familiar with. Seek some tranquility percolating their Japanese Garden, or set afoot on their treetop walk which boasts fabulous views.

Farleys House & Gallery Sculpture Garden

Sculpture Garden at Farleys House & Gallery

Muddles Green, Chiddingly, Lewes BN8 6HW

This pretty sculpture garden surrounds the house of artists Lee Miller and Roland Penrose. It was redesigned by Penrose in 1949 to resemble the rooms of a house, complete with an orchard area, a more formal flower garden and lawns which were used for picnics and playing croquet with visitors. Nowadays, the garden houses over 20 permanent works by contemporary artists alongside new pieces – the 2022 display includes works from Julian Wild, Nic Acaster and more. 

Reopens for the season on 2 April

Chatsworth House

Chatsworth House Garden

Bakewell DE45 1PP

Local visitors are now being welcomed back to the world-famous grounds of Chatsworth House, home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire. Since being closed to the public, the 105-acre gardens have bloomed with thousands of new plants and trees. There’s also a new display of medieval masterpieces, plus thousands of new plants and trees.

Chelsea Physic Gardens

Chelsea Physic Garden

London SW3 4HS

For Londoners, this garden is nestled in a microclimate next to the Thames on Swan Walk in Chelsea. The walled space was founded in 1673 by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries for apprentices to study medicinal plants. It’s also the oldest botanical garden in London. Recently the garden secured funding for its heritage project to restore its historic range of Victorian-designed glasshouses, with work set to begin in spring this year.

Wrest Park Flickr Karen Roe 2013

Wrest Park

Silsoe, Bedfordshire MK45 4HR

These vast gardens showcase over three centuries of design, incorporating French, Dutch, Italian and English landscaping styles. Don’t miss the statue of Diana, the goddess of hunting.

Image: Wrest Park Flickr Karen Roe 2013 

bodnant gardens

Bodnant Gardens

Bodnant Road, Tal-y-cafn, Colwyn Bay LL28 5RE

Bodnant Gardens located in Colwyn Bay is a world-famous and respected garden home to national collections of plants. Created over 150 years, the plants collected and brought over from far afield have helped create this haven of rarity and beauty with a stunning backdrop of the Carneddau mountains and Snowdonia.

Buscot park house

Buscot Park

Faringdon, Oxfordshire SN7 8BU

To enjoy Buscot Park to the fullest, time should be taken to explore the extensive gardens that surround the late eighteenth-century house. They consist of the Four Seasons garden, water garden and Woodland avenues.

Home of Charles Darwin Flickr Glen Bowman 2016

The Home of Charles Darwin

Luxted Road, Downe, Kent BR6 7JT

One of the most compelling gardens in the UK, explore Charles Darwin’s outdoor laboratory at Down House. As it stands, the gardens are a relaxed family area, but on closer inspection, you can see the scientist’s work throughout. A historic tour.

Tresco Flickr Nosha 2012

Tresco Abbey Gardens

Isles of Scilly TR24 0QQ

You’ll have to travel a little farther afield for these, but they’re worth it. Founded on the island of Tresco, on the Isles of Scilly, in 1834, unusual plants are abounded due to the warmer climates, and protection from salt winds.

Image: Tresco Flickr Nosha 2012 

Garden at Sissinghurst Castle Glen Bowman Flickr 2016

Sissinghurst Castle

Biddenden Road, near Cranbrook, Kent TN17 2AB

Whether you’re inspired by the love story between Vita Sackville-West and Harold Nicolson, or simply the beauty of the garden, Sissinghurst Castle’s blend of fresh greenery and stone walks has become one of the most iconic of them all.

Image: Garden at Sissinghurst Castle Glen Bowman Flickr 2016

belvoir castle garden

Belvoir Castle

Grantham, Leicestershire NG32 1PE

Belvoir Castle is the ancestral home of the Dukes of Rutland. Crowning a hill in Leicestershire, its turrets and towers look over the Vale of Belvoir. The estate has been divided up into four sections; The Formal, The Japanese, The Duchess and Hermits – all unique and stunning in their own right.

Levens Hall Flickr HorsesItch 2011

The Topiary Gardens at Levens Hall

Levens Hall, Kendal, Cumbria LA8 0PD

As gardens in the UK go, this one’s pretty fascinating. Levens Hall houses the most extensive topiary garden in the world. If you want to get creative with your gardening, mark this as your challenge.

Hestercombe Gardens Flickr Wendy Cutler 2010

Hestercombe House

Cheddon Fitzpaine, Taunton, Somerset TA2 8LG

Hestercombe House is nestled in a sleepy little village in Taunton, Somerset. The gardens feature two exquisite historic landscapes – the 18th century park by Copleston Warre Bampfylde, and a Lutyens/Jekyll area with formal stonework and classic colour schemes.

Barbara Hepworth Gardens Flickr Phill Lister 2015

Barbara Hepworth Sculpture Garden

Barnoon Hill, St Ives, Cornwall TR26 1TG 

The former home of St Ives artist Barbara Hepworth houses the Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden, which displays a collection of her work in the clutches of west Cornwall.

Image: Barbara Hepworth Gardens Flickr Phill Lister 2015 

Stourhead Gardens Flickr Flowcomm 2009

Stourhead Gardens

Stourhead, near Mere, Wiltshire, BA12 6QF

This Palladian mansion and world-famous landscape garden is a captivating escape in the country. The lake is a must see.

Image: Stourhead Gardens Flickr Flowcomm 2009

iford manor

Iford Manor

Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire BA15 2BA

In 1899, Harold Ainsworth Peto discovered Iford and the individuality of the garden owes everything to his inspiration and eye for combining architecture and plants. Set in 2.5 acres, the Italian style grounds provide visitors with an abundance of plants but also picturesque views over the valley. They have even launched their own Cider handcrafted on the estate, born from the desire to use the apples from the ‘forgotten’ orchards which can be visited whilst at the manor.

Carisbrooke Castle Flickr wdw1998 2013

Princess Beatrice Garden at Carisbrooke Castle

Castle Hill, Newport, Isle of Wight PO30 1XY

Designed by Chris Beardshaw, the award-winning gardener, this fragrant, floral spot is known for its architectural elements and geometric pattern. The plants represent Princess Beatrice’s blue, red and gold heraldic crest. Don’t miss the orchard either…

Image: Carisbrooke Castle Flickr 1998 2013

Sculpture By The Lakes

Sculpture By The Lakes

Pallington, Dorchester, Dorset DT2 8QU

Set in 26 acres of bucolic Dorset countryside, renowned sculptor Simon Gudgeon has blended inspiring pieces with natural beauty and Monique, Simon’s wife, has created a modern garden which perfectly compliments the sculptures. The garden was inspired by several places both in the UK and around the globe and features over 3,500 different trees and shrubs, as well as herbaceous plants, bulbs and grasses. From bees and butterflies to birds and other wild visitors, Monique’s main aim is to restore the original flora as much as possible.

Image: Firebird by Simon Gudgeon

Pashley Manor Gardens

Pashley Manor Gardens

Ticehurst, Near Wadhurst, East Sussex TN5 7HE

A statue of Anne Boleyn by Philip Jackson stands on a moated island in the grounds of this Tudor house, once owned by her great-grandfather. Their tulip festival is not one to miss, with 40,000 tulips (of 112 different varieties) creating a carpet of colour. Their enchanting bluebell walk is also a must.

Image: Herbaceous borders by Kate Wilson

Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh

Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh

20A Inverleith Row, Edinburgh EH3 5LR

Just a mile from Edinburgh city centre lie 70 acres of carefully curated greenery. In the summer months, the herbaceous border is at its prime and the ponds in the glasshouses are sporting exotic sacred lotuses and tropical water lilies.

Featured image: Kew Gardens