Our top gardens for children

Gardens are great places for children to explore and let their imaginations run wild. Our younger visitors can play hide and seek, climb trees and go wildlife spotting. Here’s our pick of the best gardens to enjoy some family fun.

Please note that to visit some of these gardens, and especially during the school holidays, we recommend you book a ticket in advance.

We’re still working hard to keep our gardens looking their best. But with fewer staff and volunteers to help out, things may look a little different on your visit. Please bear with us as we adjust to these challenging times.

Latest visiting update 

Our gardens, parks, cafés, shops and countryside locations are open. Many houses are also open to visit. Advance booking for visits helps us keep everyone safe and socially distanced. At quieter times such as weekdays, booking shouldn't be necessary, but to guarantee entry we recommend booking in advance, especially at weekends and bank holidays. Please check the property webpage before you visit and follow government guidance.

Pond dipping in the garden at Blickling Estate, Norfolk

Blickling Estate, Norfolk 

Blickling’s gardens are an ideal natural playground, with 55-acres of perfect hide and seek spots as well as places to play rounders. Follow the winding paths and the secret tunnels or see if you can find the secret garden.

Children running past snowdrops at Chirk Castle, Wrexham, Wales

Chirk Castle, Wrexham 

There's a colourful garden to explore at Chirk Castle, with lots of nature and wildlife to see. You can spot lots of different birds all year round, and spring's a great time to get out and about with the family.

Children exploring the garden in springtime at Cliveden, Buckinghamshire

Cliveden, Buckinghamshire 

Explore the wild woodland play trail or take a boat out on this pretty stretch of the river, which is thought to have inspired the Wind in the Willows. There’s plenty of space at Cliveden for the little ones to stretch their legs in beautiful surroundings.

 Family visitors in the rock garden at Cragside, Northumberland

Cragside, Northumberland 

Look out for red squirrels in the pines overhead, and wildlife in the pond. Then head to the labyrinth. Cut out of a rhododendron forest, it's perfect for a family game of hide-and-seek.

Visitors in the garden at Hill Top, Near Sawrey, Lake District

Hill Top, Cumbria 

Step into the garden of celebrated children's author, Beatrix Potter. Create your own adventures as you explore familiar spots from her much-loved books including the slate-flagged garden path made famous by the Tale of Tom Kitten, and the rhubarb patch where a certain Miss Puddleduck tried to hide her eggs.

 Boy in the garden in spring at Killerton, Devon

Killerton, Devon 

With space and freedom to explore and play, the gardens here have wide open spaces and winding paths through shady woodlands. Keep your eyes open for the spring flowers on the buggy-friendly path around the garden which is perfect for little legs, or take an adventurous climb up to the top of the Clump where you’ll find a den building area where you can test your skills.

Children walking in the woodland

Kingston Lacy, Dorset 

Kingston Lacy is a favourite for a family day out and it's easy to see why. With a fascinating history and acres of colourful gardens and parkland to explore, an adventure awaits whatever your age and whatever the season.

Children playing at Mount Stewart

Mount Stewart, County Down 

Voted one of the world's top ten gardens, there are lots of different areas to explore with your family. Don't miss the mythical animals on the Dodo Terrace - see if you can count them all.

 Children playing at Rowallane Garden, County Down

Rowallane Garden, County Down 

Rowallane Garden is the perfect place to go on a wildlife safari. Ladybirds, butterflies, bees, hedgehogs and much more live here, so search up high in the trees and down below under rocks and you’re sure to find some friendly creatures.

Visitors in the garden at Speke Hall, Liverpool

Speke Hall, Liverpool 

The black-and-white Tudor beams of Speke Hall will fire young imaginations in a day out exploring the gardens here. Seek out minibeasts in the woods, discover the secret garden, or bring your own games to play on the lawn as a family.  

Climbing trees at Tyntesfield, Somerset

Tyntesfield, nr Bristol 

With space to stretch out and explore, Tyntesfield is a top spot for having a go at some of the 50 Things activities. Find some funky fungi from amongst the 1000 different species found here, don your wellies for a welly walk or get to know a tree amongst some of the oldest, widest or most interesting of their species.

Fun activities to try at home
Young visitor at Colby Woodland Garden, Amroth, Pembrokeshire

'50 things' activities to do in your back garden 

Your garden can be a great place to explore. From discovering the bugs that live there to gazing up and taking in the stars, we've got some great ideas for you to kick off your back garden adventures.