Britain has long been a proud nation of garden lovers and is home to some of the most spectacular and iconic gardens in the world. Rich with history and beautiful flora, these magnificent spaces start to come alive in spring when fresh blooms paint the gardens and glasshouses in splashes of colour. From grand landscapes and Victorian glasshouses to historic homes and Georgian water gardens, banish those winter blues with a visit to one of Britainís bucolic wonderlands.
Over 250 acres of rolling lawns, avenues of rich woodland and stunning lakes peppered with temples and monuments make this magnificent garden one of Britainís finest. Widely considered as one of the greatest works by ďCapabilityĒ Brown, Britainís most illustrious landscape gardener, this 18th century garden offers miles of artfully positioned swooping green which in springtime comes decorated with daffodils and primroses.
Established in 1759, Kew has been one of Londonís most popular draws for over 250 years earning itself UNESCO World Heritage status in the process. A dizzying array of trees, plants and flowers can be found housed in its noble Victorian glasshouses and grounds. This spring, marvel at the sea of crocuses (two million of them) that blanket the grounds or try visiting after dark at the new Kew Lates to view the orchids and sip botanical cocktails.
Itís said that when the gardens at Stourhead first opened in the 1740s it was declared a ďliving artworkĒ. Today it remains one of the most renowned gardens in the world and the heroic Palladian Temple mirrored across the glassy lake is one of Britainís most iconic garden views; but thereís plenty more to discover within the vast 2,650 acre grounds. Wander the grottos and ancient woodlands perfumed by spring azaleas and magnolias or hire one of the temples for a private cream tea picnic.
Head-turning gardens donít get much more beautiful than the watery spectacles at Studley. Recognised as the most stunning water gardens in Britain, this Georgian triumph adds a magical air to Britainís garden repertoire with its graceful water features carefully adorned with statues and follies and crowned by the majestic ruins of Fountainís Abbey which in spring youíll find carpeted with snowdrops.
Nicole Harley is Editor at†The Epicurean.