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jenmorg Apr 16th, 2010 02:23 PM

Advice on gardens and food in/near Oxfordshire again
We are renting a cottage in Hook Norton, Oxfordshire in June with a view to seeing as many open gardens as we can reasonably fit in. I already have a list from the National trust including Upton House, Packwood House, Hidcote, Stowe, Cliveden, Waddesdon Manor Stourhead and West Green House. Does anyone have any other suggestions? and Of the NT ones mentioned above which are the best in June?
Would also like advice on good places to eat in the area. We will have a car.
SORRY I FORGOT TO TAG THIS TO UK PREVIOUSLY. Thanks to flanneruk for previous reply!

michele_d Apr 16th, 2010 03:05 PM

Hi jenmorg,
We visited Hidcote last year in July. It is absolutely beautiful. As with any large garden, there are many, many varieties of plantings to guarantee color for most of the year. Even without flowers it is a beautiful garden with trees and walkways and lawns galore. I'm sure June will be peak season at any of the gardens.

There is a lovely little restaurant in Hidcote gardens where you can enjoy lunch or just a little break from walking around. It was a very enjoyable day.

Have fun,

Hastobe_Katt Apr 17th, 2010 01:09 AM

There is always


Greys Court -
Buscot Park -
Rousham House -

I would also have suggested the Botanic Gardens at Oxford University but when we were there a couple of weeks ago the gardens and path were being relaid so it looked a little like a building site!

We have had some lovely days exploring privately owned gardens which are open for charity and listed under the NGS - They are (usually) not large gardens but there can be some gems. Sometimes a whole village will open it's gardens and BBQ's etc are put on which makes for a lovely day.

ElendilPickle Apr 17th, 2010 02:57 PM

I've only been to Stourhead, but it was lovely in May and I imagine it would be lovely in June as well.

You might want to look into getting a Great British Heritage Pass at Many properties, including Stourhead, are covered by the pass.

Lee Ann

flanneruk Apr 17th, 2010 10:01 PM

"I would also have suggested the Botanic Gardens at Oxford "

No-one's mentioned college gardens generally.

Look at a photograph of Oxford from the air, and you see most of the centre isn't medieval buildings, but walled gardens. Often a bit underwhelming for vistors, since the best ones are usually the private ones for the college Master.

Some interesting ones in colleges tourists ignore. Hardly anyone's ever even heard of Wolfson, for example but its garden's nice. Worcester has an amazing, free-access, garden in a part of Oxford visitors often pass by. St Catherine's is now gong shabby - but it's a strong contrast to the city's standard honey stone and herbaceous border garden design. Wadham's is used a lot for plays or concerts - even outside term time - and it's worth checking in the Oxford Times (or at for other public activity in college gardens

A slug of Magdalen Fellows' Garden is publicly accessible, as are bits of New College's. And the point of the Botanic Gardens is the plants, which are practically unaffected by the building work

michele_d Apr 18th, 2010 01:51 PM

When we visited Hidcote there was some sort of pass that they were offering. I think it might have been for the National Trust sites but I'm not sure. Be sure to ask at the first NT site you go to. I didn't apply to us but it might to you. Anything to save a few bucks.

janisj Apr 18th, 2010 02:53 PM

Yes, the Nat'l Trust does offer a pass. But often the Great British Heritage Pass is a better buy. It costs more, but it covers a lot more properties. All National Trust, all English Heritage, plus many of the big privately owned places.

Mostly depends on exactly which places one is visiting.

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