The former home of the Mitford family, established in the 1880's, as a 'wild garden' with a collection of trees, Batsford now has 55 acres with 1500 different species, many rare bulbs, magnolias, flowering cherries and the 'handkerchief tree' in spring, maples in autumn. Something of interest all year round plus stream, waterfall, cave and garden sculptures including a Buddha.
Broadway Tower Country Park
Broadway Tower, renowned as one of England's most outstanding viewpoints, stands at 1024 feet above sea level, making it the second highest point on the Cotswold ridge. Built on an ancient beacon site, with views in a 62-mile radius, the vistas are breath-taking reaching across sixteen counties and encompassing the vast expanse from the peaks of the Welsh mountains to High Wycombe in Buckinghamshire.
The unique Capability Brown Folly was built by James Wyatt whose visionary mixtures of architectural styles makes Broadway Tower still outstanding today. Four floors including roof viewing platform can be climbed by visitors; each presenting a unique style of building design and fascinating exhibitions connected with the Tower's past and the surrounding area.
Notable occupants include Sir Thomas Phillips, renowned collector of manuscripts and books as well as Pre-Raphaelite artists including designer, writer and craftsman William Morris, who used the Tower as a country retreat. At the foot of Broadway Tower its deer park is a delight with "bambies" in June and July.
Crickley Hill Country Park
One hundred and forty three acres of grassland and beech woods situated on Cotswold escarpment
A site of archaeological interest with panoramic views and way-marked trails, plus a small visitor centre open daily in season, April to end of September.
Hidcote Manor Garden
Memories don't get any better than this. Relax and unwind in one of the country's great gardens and experience for yourself the fulfilment of a quiet American's English fantasy. You'll never forget the exquisite garden rooms, each with its own unique character. Discover rare shrubs and trees, herbaceous borders and unusual plants from around the world.
The garden changes in harmony with the seasons, from vibrant spring bulbs to autumn's spectacular Red Border. Nestled in the Cotswolds with sweeping views across the Vale of Evesham, a visit to Hidcote is inspirational at any time of year.
Mill Dene Gardens
Mill Dene is a romantic story of a young couple falling in love with each other and a beautiful Cotswold stone water mill.
Knowing nothing about gardening the Dares set about creating one of the most interesting gardens in the Cotswolds. It is personal, witty, surprising and of course, beautiful as well as horticulturally excellent as you would expect from a sometime Chelsea judge.
Features of this garden include a misty grotto, a bog garden and stream. There are plenty of seats from which to enjoy the mill pond and its trout, kingfisher and ducks. It is an exercise in making the most of a difficult and steep sided site. It is also an exercise in creating something beautiful in which to meditate and to nourish the senses.
Surrounding an ancient watermill, and hugging the side of a steep, tiny valley Mill Dene Garden really is hidden in the Cotswolds and is a place of tranquillity and rest; there are, after all, 10 seats!
Come and enjoy a cream tea by the brook and maybe spot the kingfisher. Buy some plants, alpines are the speciality this year. See you in the garden. It is a RHS garden and the 'Good Garden Guide' recommended. Dangerous for young children.
Painswick Rococo Gardens
Painswick Rococo Garden is a unique and fascinating insight into early to mid-18th century English garden design. The only complete Rococo garden in England, it dates from a brief period (1720 - 1760) when English gardens were changing from the formal to the informal. These Rococo gardens combined formal vistas with winding woodland walks and more natural planting.
Situated outside the beautiful Cotswold town of Painswick, and famous for its snowdrop display, the Rococo Garden is a fascinating step back to a flamboyant and sensual period of English Garden Design. This gem of a garden, which was originally laid out in the early 18th century, is set in a hidden Cotswold valley with magnificent views of the surrounding countryside.
A magazine article of 1753, describing this style of garden, finished with the line "You are taken to a pompous and gilded building, consecrated to Venus for no other purpose that the squire riots here in vulgar love with a couple of orange wenches from the local play-house".
Stanway House Gardens
Stanway House, situated near Winchcombe in the glorious Gloucestershire countryside, has been described by Fodor's Guide as 'as perfect and pretty a Cotswold Manor house as anyone is likely to see'.
Stanway is a honey-coloured Cotswold village with a Jacobean house which has changed hands just once since AD715. The garden rises in a series of dramatic terraced lawns and a rare, picturesque grass work to the pyramid, which in the 18th century stood at the head of a 623 feet-long cascade descending to a formal canal on the terrace. This was probably designed by Charles Bridgeman, and exceeded in length and height (118 feet) its famous rival at Chatsworth. Inside the house is a fascinating painting recording the cascade as it looked in the eighteenth century.
The canal, the upper pond, a short section of the cascade, and the upper fall behind the pyramid were restored in 1998 and a 300-feet high single-jet fountain (the tallest garden fountain in the world) added in the middle of the canal. The medieval pond in the Lower Garden, recently restored, has enhanced the beauty of the 14th century tithe barn.
The history of Sudeley Castle and its award-winning gardens spans over a thousand years and contains many varied tales of royal associations, wars and periods of neglect and subsequent restoration.
Sudeley's glorious gardens are amongst the very best in England, from the centrepiece Queens' Garden, billowing with hundreds of varieties of old fashioned roses, to the Herbal Healing Garden which was introduced for the 2010 season. We are thrilled that the renowned Sir Roddy Llewellyn has recently joined us as Design Consultant, and look forward to a gardening future as illustrious as our past.
We encourage you to take time to see the fascinating exhibitions which explore the story of Sudeley's history and the prominent characters who have visited or lived at the Castle. Although the Castle remains a family home, the 16th Century west wing which houses the exhibitions and coffee shop, St Mary's Church where Katherine Parr lies buried, the gardens, pheasantry, medieval ruins and adventure playground are for you to explore and experience at your leisure.
Westonbirt - The National Arboretum is a magical tree garden, with some of the oldest, rarest and biggest trees in the world. Set in a 600-acre historic landscape there are 16,000 trees and shrubs and 17 miles of easily accessible paths. It's the perfect place to relax and recharge and to get back to nature.
Westonbirt is world-famous for its stunning autumn colours and is equally colourful in spring, when rhododendrons and bluebells come into their own. There are events throughout the year - from hugely popular summer concerts to the Festival of the Tree and Enchanted Christmas illuminated trail.
You can also visit Maples Restaurant or the Courtyard Cafe, the Forest Shop and specialist Plant Centre.