On 8th May, I visited the magical Woodland Gardens at Bowood. This part of the garden is only open for a few weeks of the year so if you get the chance, go!

There are azaleas, magnolias and rhododendrons all in amazing colours from whites and reds to mauves and yellows – and against a carpet of bluebells. Watch out for the ‘Walk of the Week’ which takes you through the best display of flowers,

the Mausoleum which was designed by Robert Adam in 1761

and the Jubilee Garden which was created in 2006.

The Woodland covers over thirty acres and recently, over thirty hardy hybrids that were thought to be extinct have been discovered in the Gardens. This area of Bowood was first planted in 1854 and developed further by the 5th Marquess of Lansdown on his return from India where he had been Viceroy.

If you have time, jump in the car and follow the signs to Bowood House. The house was built c1725 on the site of a former hunting lodge and was bought by 1st Earl of Shelburne in 1754 and has remained in the family ever since. There’s a stunning Terrace in front of the House while the Park was laid out for the 2nd Earl by ‘Capability’ Brown.

There’s also an amazing Adventure Playground for kids and a small farm by the entrance.

Dogs are not allowed in the gardens and Park but they are allowed on a lead in the Woodland Garden.


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