At just over a mile the Acland walk is suitable for pushchairs, ordinary shoes and people with little legs. This buggy-friendly circular walk follows surfaced paths through the parkland, garden and chapel grounds and is a great introduction to Killerton. Not suitable for dogs.
A great route for families
Visitor Reception, Stable Block
From visitor reception turn right to take the path towards the house. You are walking through Front Park. 250 years ago this was divided into small fields with a village and two roads crossing in the middle of the park. This was demolished in 1770s before Killerton was rebuilt in 1778. Pass the stepping logs on your right. To your left, on a clear day, you might spot Haldon Woods on the horizon.
You are passing our grand propped up sweet chestnut tree - a favourite landmark. It was planted as a sapling 250 years ago. The missing branch broke off in the great storm of 1920. Head through the black ornate gates, across the gravel forecourt and go through the wooden garden gate.
Pass by the old canons and follow the path right, so the lawn is on your left. Gardeners used to bring cut flowers for floral arrangements into the middle area of what is now the Killerton Kitchen restaurant.
Follow the path up a short gentle slope between two stone urns. Look left to spot the church tower in our neighbouring village of Broadclyst. Turn off right from the gravel path and walk up the grassy slope towards the thatched wooden hut, known as the Bear's Hut.
The Bear's Hut
Take a moment to look inside the Bear's Hut. It started life as the "Lady Cot", a summer house for Lady Acland as a honeymoon present in 1808. It is carpeted with cobbles, log sections and deer knuckle bones. The ceilings are covered with deerskins and pinecones.
On leaving the Bear's Hut turn right along the path towards the memorial cross. At the top take a moment to catch your breath at the granite memorial cross. It is not a war memorial but a tribute to Sir Thomas Acland, erected in his memory at his favourite view. You are looking west towards north Dartmoor and on a clear day you can see Cosdon Beacon, 1800ft above sea level and 20 miles away.
Keep following the path around the hairpin bend and cross the rustic bridge. The ditch below is a deer park pale, once used to keep a herd of fallow deer out of the garden. Continue ahead but if you don't mind some narrow stone steps, the ice house and the rock garden on your right are worth a look.
The rock garden
The pretty rock garden was once an old quarry. See if you can spot the tall stones collected from the Giant's Causeway in Ireland as a holiday souvenir by the Aclands during the 1800s.
Back on the path continue through the avenue of tall beech trees called the Beech Walk. From here you may just be able to pick out the mouth of the Exe Estuary if it's glittering in the sun about 15 miles away.
Pass below the giant redwood tree. It was planted in 1853 and is one of the very first giant redwoods to be planted in England. Killerton is home to many giant redwoods and this towers 41m high. When the path splits take the right hand path and head down the hill. Turn left following the sign for the chapel and exit.
Continue through the dairy gate. Please make sure the gate is closed behind you as there may be livestock grazing the parkland. You'll reach a bench on your left. Stop to enjoy the view over Broadclyst and Woodbury Common. Where the paths cross ahead, follow straight on.
Where the paths cross, head straight on.
Pass underneath a clump of very old gnarled sweet chestnut trees and go through the wooden gate into the chapel grounds.
Turn left to reach the chapel. This is a Victorian chapel built in 1841 from stone quarried on the estate. From the chapel steps turn left and walk downhill passing Park Cottage on your left, and go through the wooden gate. (Please be mindful that there may be guests staying in our holiday cottage). Continue downhill to return back to where you started.
The Chapel garden
From the chapel entrance look left to see our tall champion tulip trees. In 1968 Lady Anne Acland planted two cyclamen plants under these trees. In the spring a vivid pink blanket of flowers bloom beneath the trees.
Shop and cafe, Stable Block
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