Posted 6th Feb 2015
As spring flowers come into their own, we discover the top 10 locations filled with blossoming bluebells and emerging tulips for you to explore
Generations of stunning gardens
Settled into 80 acres of well-kept gardens with stunning views of Snowdonia, Bodnant Garden is renowned for its impeccable, grand terraced lawns, its gloriously romantic waterfall and its marvellous foliage. As one of the most celebrated gardens in Wales, it is a spring haven, with dells hidden within its wooded valley and clusters of vivid colours sprinkled within the grounds. Lovingly created by five generations of one family, the garden is a hub of wildlife activity and hidden gardens, which will slowly become available to the public over the next few years. Visit the grounds on 12th March and 16th April to get a sneak peek courtesy of the gardener, who will take you on a hidden walk, discovering Bodnant Garden's spring flowers as you go. Normal admission charges apply and for more information contact the garden office on 01492 650460.
Acres of picturesque views
Saunter down an avenue of double lime trees, the longest in Europe, and take in the breath-taking beauty of 3,800 acres of parkland, gardens, peaceful woodlands and a stunning lake. Alive with birdsong, the enchanting walled kitchen garden is filled with an enviable collection of culinary rhubarbs and hundreds of fruit, herbs and delicious vegetables. Explore the captivating Clumber Park with friends and family, as a shimmering carpet of bluebells makes it come to life in spring. For more information about Clumber Park please call 01909 544917. Normal admission charges apply.
Charming coastal landscapes
Discover the charm of Cornwall and the most southerly point of Britain by enjoying a guided walk through The Lizard. See stunning spring squills, beautiful burnet roses and striking hairy greenwoods as you take in the surroundings of The Lizard, such as the colourful Serpentine stone which has a snakeskin like appearance when polished. Take a gentle stroll from Lizard Green, along the cliff path and high above Polpeor Cove. Keep an eye out for the elusive spotted cat's ear or bloody cranesbill, as you brush past thyme broomrape and spring sandwort while taking in the fresh Cornwall air.
Get the most out of the Lizard with a walking holiday and follow the Cornish coast on a guided walk that encompasses sandy beaches and picturesque locations. HF Holidays offer up to three guided walks per day with three types of walk, easy, medium and hard, as part of a walking holiday to St Ives. Staying in the Chy Morvah Hotel you can explore the pathways and hillsides that St Ives has to offer, with holidays starting from £325 for a guided walking holiday and £275 for a country house escape. For more information visit www.hfholidays.co.uk.
A hidden treasure
Be encompassed by nature taking in the diverse landscapes and thrilling histories of the grounds as you stroll around the delightful scenery of Morden Hall Park. A green oasis in suburbia, it is a haven for wildlife who call the meadows and woodland home. Surrounded by magnificent trees and with a river meandering through a former deer-park, you are struck with a sense of calm. Walk around the park in spring and admire the gentle calls of the birds as you lose yourself in the grounds. To find out more about Morden Hall Park call 020 8545 6850.
Wildlife at its finest
Catch sight of the spring migrant birds in the scrub and hedgerows as you wander through Pulborough Brooks nature reserve. Walk along hedge-lined paths and sneak into hides to spot seasonal wildlife, such as nightingales, blackcaps, garden warblers and lesser whitethroats. Brush past bluebells that have crept into view and mingled with the other spring flowers that are coming into their own in the woodland. Spot the last of the wintering ducks and see displays of lapwings, redshanks and passage waders on the brooks of this RSPB reserve. Visit â�¨www.rspb.org.uk for more details about Pulborough Brooks nature reserve.
Read the rest of this feature on page 110-113 of the March/April 2015 issue of LandLove.
By Lauren Morton
Images courtesy of The National Trust's: Andrew Butler, Ian Shaw, Jerry Harpur, Jenny Woodcock, The RSPB's: Roger Wilmshurst, HF Holidays