Gardens of the Cotswolds
- NOT CURRENTLY AVAILABLE
We’ll be based in the historic seaside town of Brighton surrounded by the beautiful Sussex countryside; this part of England boasts some of the most renowned gardens in the country. With its abundance of orchards and hop fields, Kent is known as ‘The Garden of England’ and this tour provides an opportunity to visit some of the best-known gardens in this county and in the adjoining county of Sussex. This entire area, steeped in heritage and history, is famous for its picturesque villages and beautiful countryside and is home to the renowned Sissinghurst Gardens and Great Dixter Gardens amongst others.
Today we meet our garden guide, Rosie Maye, at Dublin airport for our flight to London Gatwick and travel by private coach to Kent.
Visit Sissinghurst Castle and Gardens, a renowned garden developed by Vita Sackville-West and Sir Harold Nicolson. Free time for lunch on arrival before exploring the garden 'rooms' and enjoy the wonderful overview from the top of the Tower. The transformation of Sissinghurst Castle began in the 1930s. Harold's architectural planning of the garden rooms, and the colourful, abundant planting in the gardens by Vita, reflect the romance and intimacy of her poems and writings. A world renowned garden which never disappoints.
Transfer to our hotel for our welcome meal together.
Travel a short distance from Brighton to Lewes to visit Charleston House & Gardens which was the home of Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant and a meeting place for the writers, painters and intellectuals of the Bloomsbury group. Guided tour of the house before exploring the garden and visiting the cafe and shop. Then to Denman's Garden The former home and garden of the late John Brookes, one of Britain's most influential landscape designers. Denman's Garden features dry riverbeds, gravel gardens, a walled garden, a conservatory, and unusual plants from around the world. The contemporary 4-acre garden was converted from market garden to ornamental garden by plantswoman Joyce Robinson. Free time for lunch there.
A visit Parham House and Gardens which is is one of Britain's finest Elizabethan Houses, complete with a Great Hall and Long Gallery. Its tranquility and timeless beauty have changed little over the centuries. Surrounding the house are the award winning gardens, consisting of beautiful Pleasure Grounds and a four-acre Walled Garden. There are wonderful herbaceous borders, a glasshouse, vegetable garden, orchard and a 1920s Wendy House. Evening free to explore the restaurants of Brighton.
Free morning to explore the wonders of Brighton and perhaps visit the beautifully restored Brighton Pavilion, the magnificent seaside palace built for George IV.
Early afternoon today we depart for a visit to one of the most famous gardens in England, the late Christopher Lloyd's Great Dixter Garden & Nursery, still maintained beautifully and planted creatively by his Head Gardener and collaborator, Fergus Garrett. Evening free to explore the restaurants of Brighton.
Check out of our hotel and our first visit today is to The Garden House - a delightful town garden in Brighton that has earned a reputation as one of the best garden school before a visit to the extensive grounds of West Dean which features a restored Walled Kitchen Garden, a spectacular 300 foot-long Edwardian Pergola, herbaceous borders and beautiful parkland walk with views over the South Downs. Free time for lunch here.
The final garden visit, before transferring to London Gatwick, is Sussex Prairie Garden, an eight-acre garden, surrounded by mature oak trees, consisting of a series of interlocking arcs of large planted borders in a naturalistic style. The plantings consist of large groupings of each variety, planted in a free flowing style, which contrasts leaf forms, stems, stalks, flower shapes and textures. Colours are soft and muted, and complement the natural landscape.
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Europe has undoubtedly the greatest choice of holiday destinations in the world and most can be reached within a couple of hours. From the romance of Italy, the splendour of France and the beautiful beaches of the Mediterranean.