Family fun at Mottistone Gardens

We've lots of ways to keep little ones entertained on a visit to Mottistone Gardens. In the sheltered valley, mini explorers can discover the wonders of nature and even our very own flowerpot people, and this summer you can come out and play in the garden.

‘Garden gallop at Mottistone’

Daily family trail, 23 July  to  26  August.  10.30am -  4.30pm. 

Mottistone was home to Warrior, a real war horse who miraculously survived action during WW1. 

Get your heart rate up at Mottistone Gardens this Summer as you follow in Warriors hooves. Borrow one of our hobby horses (limited nags available!)  and either walk, trot, gallop or Canter your way around our course and discover more about this amazing creature along the way.  

N.B  Route set in natural woodland with slight gradient and uneven ground. Less able can trek an easier route

Hobby horse racecourse.

August 2 to August 23   11am - 1pm

Join us every Tuesday and make your very own hobby horse before racing round our track.

All materials provided. Normal admission applies. Free event but donations welcome.


Flowerpot trail

Hidden around the garden are nine flowerpot people with names such as Nanny McPea, Benedict Cucumberpatch and Captain Jack Marrow, all suggested by previous visitors.
One of the most popular, Allium Titchmarsh, was launched by his namesake. You can pick up a free trail sheet at Visitor Reception, and once they’ve all been found, children can draw and name their own flowerpot person who may even appear in the garden the following year. This is great for those aged 5-12 years.
Can you find Ivan Appetite?
A caterpillar made at flowerpots and called Ivan Appetite in the gardens at Mottistone on the Isle of Wight
Can you find Ivan Appetite?

Hide and seek

The shrub-filled banks toward the top of the garden are the ideal place for a game of hide-and-seek in a safe and secure environment. Or head to the Wild Area just behind the Kitchen Garden. Just right for older children (8-12 years), hidden in amongst the trees, you could build a den, make a trail with sticks or even find a geocache.
Discover the wild area at Mottistone Gardens
Open gate with sign on it leading in to the wild area at Mottistone Gardens on the Isle of Wight
Discover the wild area at Mottistone Gardens

'50 Things to do before you're 11¾' 

We’ve plenty of ways for you to tick of some off your '50 things to do before you’re 11¾' at Mottistone Gardens. You might roll down a really big hill in the orchard, pick the daisies and wear a wild crown, or take a barefoot walk through the maze. You can collect a leaflet from Visitor Reception that will help you get started on your free, '50 things' journey.

Time to refuel

When tummies start to rumble, the tea garden makes a good pit stop. Here you’ll find freshly made sandwiches, soups, cakes and tasty treats which use produce from the organic kitchen garden where possible.

There are lots of great spots for picnics around the gardens – the grassy lawns of the orchard are a favourite, and toddlers can run around here too, or there are plenty of benches dotted high and low around the grounds.


Useful things for families to know

  • There is a free car park located next to the gardens. From here there is a short, 2 minute walk to Visitor Reception along a gravel path and down a few steps.
  • Baby changing facilities are available in the accessible toilet which is located in the entrance barn.
  • In the tea gardens there is water to help-yourself to and child friendly glasses.
  • Pushchairs are welcome but there are some gravel paths and steps.
  • Highchairs are available in the tea garden.
  • Dogs on leads are welcome throughout the gardens and there are water bowls for four-legged friends outside the shop and in the tea garden.