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"Wisley has it all…"
Where to start!
With a not-expensive joint membership (offers on all the time) you can join and get up to 3 kids in free.
There is something all year round at Wisley.
Spring - bulbs everywhere. Later on, rhododendron and azalea forest (knocks the spots off The Isabella Plantation)
Summer - rose garden and wildflower meadow
Autumn - acres, massive orchard where you can pick your own apples and pears
Winter - Christmas activities for kids, snowdrops, dogwood displays
There is a lovely and naturalistic adventure playground, with sticks in a corner to encourage kids to make a wigwam.
The huge Victorian Greenhouse is full of dry and wet climate tropical species (look out for the orchid displays, real butterfly displays - coming up soon - and Christmas displays).
Beautiful wildflower meadow and grasses.
Fab central aisle leading to viewpoint hill, with some of the best herbaceous perennial displays and annuals I have ever seen.
A huge orchard - kids love running through it, picking up fallen apples.
Pinetum - pine forest, with breathtaking heather displays.
Rock pool and rock gardens.
Things to do:
Take a picnic, find your favourite tree in the orchard and stick a blanket under it! If you're close enough to the playground, kids can run to it without you having to leave your picnic spot!
Have an amazingly scrummy lunch in one of the 2 main restaurants (the main one has just been refurbished and there's also the Glasshouse a bit further away) - food often lets places like these down, but at Wisley the food is fab. Jacket potatoes, sandwiches and soups, evolved main courses incl chicken chasseur, salmon en croute...kids can have half jacket potato portions or choose their own packed lunch stuff to put in a kids box. Nice touches like mini tubs of sliced cucumber/carrot/cherry tomato, also sliced banana in custard.
Divine cakes and biscuits plus licenced and has great teas and coffees.
Apparently they can even make you up a picnic to take out to the grounds with you (though we never have).
Loads of stuff going on for kids during the holidays and half terms.
Amazing garden centre (though not cheap).
Ice cream stands.
Plant and flower fairs.
If you're a gardening mad mum or dad, this place is for you and there's enough going on for kids that you can drag them there with you.
My DD (aged 5) loves this place.
We;re going in a couple of weeks to see the butterflies in the Greenhouse and do the Snowdrop trail.Read moreLess
1 person found this review helpful.
"The scarecrow trail at RHS Wisley - great family fun…"
The flagship garden of the RHS is located in Wisley, Surrey. Even with a toddler in tow, it oozes peace and tranquility. Set in 240 acres, you can expect to lose hours while you take in its immense gardens, loggia and canal of waterlilies.
The nearby walled garden is the perfect place to stop and take it all in amidst a sea of purple and white flowers. The Jubilee and Bowes Lyon Rose Gardens are in full bloom and up to Battleston Hill is the towering Henry Moore sculpture ‘The Arch’.
A state-of-the-art Glasshouse is like a magical jungle with palms, creepers and a waterfall. Three climatic zones provide the perfect a haven for difficult to grow, rare and endangered species and Orchids.
Wisley has varying events on throughout the year – one of which is The Scarecrow Trail. Designed by local Women’s Institute members, 100 uniquely designed scarecrows are dotted around seven acres.
With the theme ‘Strictly Scarecrows’, mostly were based on the TV programme although there were a couple made of straws and bubble wrap.
Read more here: http://www.podcastdove.com/2013/08/10/the-scarecrow-trail/Read moreLess
"Beautiful place for children to wander and parents enjoy spectaular planting…"
Very beautiful - miles of space to wander. Good cafe and greenhouse. We had a lovely picnic under apple trees - designated area and play park for children is nice with spots for parents to sit. No balls allowed but drawing is good to do there. Ponds and koi fascinate.
All in all I think more beautiful than Kew - we went in height of summer.Read moreLess
1 person found this review helpful.
"Wisley Gardens are beautiful and offer plenty of space for…"
Wisley Gardens are beautiful and offer plenty of space for varied walks.
Great cake selection on offer and yummy stews in the winter if you fancy lunch.
A BIG warning to mums with babies though if you want to visit the Butterfly exhibition in January February be ready to leave your pushchair outside of the glasshouse in the rain and have to carry baby, bags and coats as they have a policy of banning pushchairs at all times for this exhibition - even on weekdays!Read moreLess