Enjoy the roses in the Elizabethan garden, the orchids in the secret wild garden and the herbaceous borders in the Cider House garden. Also explore the kitchen garden, orchards and a medieval barn next to the house.
A project to repair a wall in the Kitchen Garden has uncovered stone steps leading to a blocked doorway. These were probably part of the medieval building that was destroyed during the reign of Henry VIII.
There are miles of walks through the ancient wooded valley – dogs can be taken on leads.
National Trust members visit for free.
Originally a Cistercian abbey founded in 1278 by Amicia, Countess of Devon, it remained an abbey until the Dissolution of the Monasteries.
Henry VIII sold the estate to Sir Richard Grenville who began to convert the remains of the Abbey into a house with the help of his son Sir Roger Grenville. When the Mary Rose sank in Portsmouth Harbour in 1545, her Captain was Vice Admiral George Carew although there are reports claiming that a Captain Roger Grenville was on board.
In 1581, Buckland Abbey was sold to Sir Francis Drake, who lived at Buckland Abbey for fifteen years.
In 1842, John Claudius Loudon, botanist and founder of the Gardenesque style of gardening, described Buckland Abbey as ‘an old place situated in a bottom, chiefly remarkable for having been the residence of the the circumnavigator Drake’.
Drake’s descendants lived at the Abbey until 1946 when the estate was bought by Captain Arthur Rodd, a local landowner.
Captain Rodd gave the property to the National Trust in 1947.