Britain's real winter wonderlands

Monday 05 December 2016
MDean

Set off on a frosty adventure to the National Trust’s most beautiful winter gardens, and take in scenes worthy of a Christmas card. Explore parklands, meadows and the grounds of stately homes full of winter wildlife, and experience the colour and scent of Britain’s winter blooms.

Anglesey Abbey, Garden and Lode Mill, Cambridgeshire 

Anglesey Abbey’s winter gardens are beautifully atmospheric at this time of year.

Anglesey Abbey

©NTPL/Nick Meers

Full of plants that give winter colour, texture and fragrance, it’s a beautiful place to spend a crisp winter’s day. There are plenty of scenic delights to discover throughout the extensive gardens including historic Lode Mill and magnificent statues collected by Lord Fairhaven. 

Dyrham Park, Gloucestershire

See the bright blues and vibrant reds of Dyrham’s winter garden.

Dyhham Park, Gloucestershire, England

©National Trust Images / John Dobson

You’ll crunch through the frosty grasses of the perry pear orchard to enjoy idyllic winter views as you look past the bee hives towards St Peter’s Church. Then follow the serpent path alongside the ponds back towards the courtyard garden where you might even spot a few robins darting about on a hunt for winter berries.

Mottisfont, Hampshire

Stroll along paths through winter-flowering shrubs, brilliantly coloured dogwood bark and silvery ornamental bramble in Mottisfont’s unique winter gardens.

Mottisfont, Hampshire

©National Trust Images

Mottisfont Gardens

©National Trust Images/Clare Kendall

In winter this grand stately home’s landscaped water gardens are touched with frost, and as as winter continues, it becomes a refuge for late flowering shrubs such as mahonia, sweet-smelling winter honeysuckle and daphne.

Mottisfont in winter frost

©National Trust Images/John Miller

Dyffryn Gardens, Vale of Glamorgan

Dyffryn Gardens’ enchanting garden rooms are beautiful in winter.

Dyffryn Gardens, Wales

©National Trust Images

In the Kitchen Garden you’ll see curly kale, sprouts and cabbages, while in the arboretum you’ll wander among bright red holly berries and winter roses on a frosty walk along the winding paths. Warm up in the glasshouses where you’ll find a bright and airy vinery, a cacti house and a tropical-feeling rainforest blooming with orchids and banana trees.

Biddulph Grange Garden, Staffordshire

Biddulph Grange is one of the most exciting figures of the great era of Victorian gardening. This garden was the vision of one man, James Bateman, who from 1841 spent more than twenty years collecting plants from across the world.

Biddulph Grange Garden

The plants and trees were brought together at Biddulph amid rockwork, topiary, tree-stumps and a remarkable collection of eclectic garden buildings designed by Bateman and Edward Cooke.

Biddulph Grange

Take a stroll through the Pinetum during the winter months where the path weaves its way between conifers, hollies, yews and monkey puzzle trees, which look especially enchanting with a frosting of snow. 

Wallington, Northumberland

Explore the wonderful 18th-century pleasure gardens waiting for you in the woods at Wallington, and see the contrast from the formality of the grand house. Stroll along the growing winter trail and see the seasonal planting through the East Wood, with trees, shrubs and plants showcasing coloured and textured bark and winter berries.

Wallington, Northumberland

© Chris Orton

Discover the mini-lake covered in a sprinkling of frost and the enchanting Walled Garden, where the Edwardian conservatory bursts with colour and scent all year round.

Wallington, Northumberland

© Paul Nicoll

You can visit the grounds at Wallington all through the year, including Christmas Day, and they’re the perfect place to walk off your Christmas dinner.

Wallington Gardens

© Chris Orton

Latest Blogs

Events this weekend: big beats and real-life Winterfell

Read more
Game of Thrones at Castle Ward
Events this weekend: big beats and real-life Winterfell

How to get to the Lake District from Manchester

Read more
How to get to the Lake District from Manchester
How to get to the Lake District from Manchester

Where to find Scotland’s best food experiences

Read more
Where to find Scotland’s best food experiences
Where to find Scotland’s best food experiences

Explore Cardiff Castle's Arab Room in 360

Read more
Explore Cardiff Castle's Arab Room in 360
Explore Cardiff Castle's Arab Room in 360

Explore Salisbury Cathedral in 360

Read more
Explore Salisbury Cathedral in 360
Explore Salisbury Cathedral in 360