Your guide to historical gardens to visit in the UK
The UK has many historic gardens which are open to the public all year round. The aim of this site is to give visitors details of all of these gardens, opening times and where possible entrance fees.
Sites include Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of Winston Churchill, Newstead Abbey, the home of the poet Lord Byron. Plus the many public gardens like RHS Wisley in Surrey or Rosemoor in North Devon.
Berkshire | Chesire | Cumbria | Essex | North Devon |
East Devon | Hertfordshire |Isle of Wight | Northamptonshire |
Northumberland | North Yorkshire |
Nottinghamshire | Oxfordshire | Surrey |
Basildon Park, Lower Basildon, Reading, Berkshire, RG8 9NR
This beautiful Palladian mansion featured in the recent film adaptation of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. It was built in 1776-83 by John Carr for Francis Sykes, who had made his fortune in India. The interior is notable for its original delicate plasterwork and elegant staircase, as well as for the unusual Octagon Room. The house fell on hard times early in the last century, but was rescued by Lord and Lady Iliffe, who restored it and filled it with fine pictures and furniture. The early 19th-century pleasure grounds are being restored, and there are waymarked trails through the parkland.
Windsor Castle, Windsor, Berkshire, SL4 1NJ
Windsor Castle is an official residence of The Queen and the largest occupied castle in the world. A Royal home and fortress for over 900 years, the Castle remains a working palace today. To the south of Windsor is The Great Park extending over some 14,000 acres of which 8,000 acres are forest.
Dalemain Estate, Penrith, Cumbria, CA11 0HB
Dalemain and it's Lake District Gardens and much-loved family home is set against the grandeur and picturesque splendour of the Lakeland Fells and Parkland.
A mediaeval, Tudor and early Georgian house and Lake District gardens that has been home to the same family since 1679.
Hyde Hall, Rettendon, Chelmsford, Essex CM3 8ET
The Garden contains the National Collection of Viburnum and an attractive plantsman's garden of eight acres containing a woodland area, spring bulbs, ornamental ponds with lilies and fish, together with a large collection of modern roses and a rope walk of climbing and pillar roses.
Bicton Park Botanical Gardens
Bicton Park Botanical Gardens, East Budleigh, Devon, EX9 7BJ
Spanning nearly 300 years of horticultural history, these magnificent gardens are set in East Devon's picturesque Otter Valley, between the ancient city of Exeter and southwest England's Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site.
Escot Historic Gardens
Escot Park, Ottery St Mary, Devon, EX11 1LU
Enjoy the natural historical gardens and fantasy woodland which surround the ancestral home of the Kennaway family. The Escot 4000 beech tree maze design features five fantastic hedge-leaping bridges and a dramatic central lookout tower.
Isle of Wight
Osbourne House Estate, Isle of Wight, PO32 6JX
Queen Victoria and Prince Albert bought Osborne and its estate from Lady Isabella Blachford in 1845. In 1848 the old house was demolished and a new three-storey pavilion with flagtower and main and household wings was built. The 19th century estate eventually totalled over 800 hectares and included numerous cottages and lodges for estate workers and members of the household.
Rosemoor, Great Torrington, North Devon, EX38 8PH
Set deep in the lovely North Devon countryside, RHS Garden Rosemoor is a garden of national importance. Lady Anne Berry gifted Rosemoor to the RHS in 1988, since then, the original eight acres have been greatly developed into 65 acres of enchanting garden and woodlands.
Althorpe House and Gardens
Althorpe Estate, Northamptonshire, NN7 4HQ
Althorpe Estate has been the Spencer family home for 500 years and is the final resting place for Diana, Princess of Wales.
Kirby Hall, Northamptonshire, NN17 3EN
Kirby Hall is one of England’s greatest Elizabethan and 17th century houses. Sir Christopher Hatton the Fourth added the great gardens (described as ‘ye finest garden in England’) in the late 17th century.
Alnwick Castle, Alnwick, Northumberland, NE66 1NQ
Adjacent to Alnwick Gardens, Alnwick Castle is a medieval Castle dating back to at least 1096. The castle has been the setting for Hogwarts in "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" and "Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone" plus other films and TV drama.
Alnwick Garden, Alnwick, Northumberland, NE66 1YU
The Alnwick Garden in Northumberland is one of the most exciting contemporary gardens to be developed in the last century, a magical landscape created from a unique idea.
Fountains Abbey & Stockley Royal Water Garden
Fountains, Ripon, North Yorkshire, HG4 3DY
Fountains Abbey comprises of the spectacular ruin of a 12th-century Cistercian abbey and monastic watermill, an Elizabethan mansion and one of the best surviving examples of a Georgian water garden. Elegant ornamental lakes, canals, temples and cascades provide a succession of dramatic, eye-catching vistas. The Victorian St Mary's Church gives a majestic focus to the medieval deer park, home to 500 deer and a wealth of flora and fauna.
Harlow Carr, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG3 1QB
The garden is seeing exciting new developments while retaining its uniquely tranquil and welcoming atmosphere. Probably the most spectacular are the dramatic new Rose Revolution borders that edge the path to Gardens through Time. Their use of mixed perennials, grasses and roses beautifully combines sustainable practice, inspirational horticulture and a contemporary twist!
Newstead Abbey, Ravenshead, Nottinghamshire, NG15 8NA
Newstead Abbey, a beautiful historic house set in a glorious landscape of gardens and parkland within the heart of Nottinghamshire, England. Founded as a monastic house in the late twelfth century, Newstead became the seat of the Byron family in 1540. The Abbey's most famous owner, the poet Lord Byron, sold the property in 1818 to his friend Colonel Thomas Wildman.
Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire, OX20 1PX
Set in beautiful parkland of 2100 acres, which was landscaped by 'Capability' Brown in 1760's, the Palace is surrounded by sweeping lawns and formal gardens.
Rousham House and Garden
Rousham House and Garden, nr Steeple Aston, Bicester, Oxfordshire, OX25 4QX
Don't miss the walled garden with its herbacious borders, small parterre, pigeon house and espalier apple trees. A fine herd of rare Long-Horn cattle are to be seen in the park. Rousham is uncommercial and unspoilt with no tea room and no shop. Bring a picnic, wear comfortable shoes and it is yours for the day.
Richmond, Surrey TW9 3AB
The eminence of Kew today is thanks to a succession of avid collectors, visionary scientists, inspired landscape architects and redoubtable gardeners who, over the centuries, have grown and developed the gardens, and the collections they contain.
Woking, Surrey GU23 6QB
The original garden was the creation of George Ferguson Wilson - businessman, scientist, inventor and keen gardener and a former Treasurer of the Society. In 1878 he purchased the site and established the Oakwood experimental garden, with the idea of making difficult plants grow successfully.
Kenilworth, Warwickshire, CV8 1NE
The castle is linked to the greatest names and events in our history King John, Simon de Montfort, the Barons War, Henry V, Henry VIII, Robert Dudley and Elizabeth I. The building’s mellow red sandstone blending the work of different ages into a wonderful harmony.
Thornhill, Dumfriesshire, DG3 4AG
In front of the Castle is one of the oldest sycamores (Acer pseudoplatinus) in the British Isles. It is interesting to note that this was flourishing before the Act of Union between Scotland and England in 1707 and is a specimen very worth seeing.
Welshpool, Powys, SY21 8RF
Built by Welsh princes and now home to the Earls of Powis. World famous garden with Italianate terraces. One of the finest collections of paintings and furniture in Wales. Beautiful collection of treasures from India displayed in the Clive Museum.