The Wells family visit Sir Harold Hillier Gardens
Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, near Romsey, is home to one of the largest collections of trees and shrubs in the world and there are different seasonal plants in the various areas around the gardens. There are many pathways to follow in and out of the plants and trees. The children found this most exciting, jumping out from behind bushes along the way!
The maps provided are easy to follow and an early Spring trail sheet for the children was very informative, encouraging the children to observe the differences between plants and views pictured back in October with early Spring.
Fun in the tree house
Firstly, we followed a path west, away from the visitor centre, and although I was map reading and also knew about the enormous tree house, the children didn’t and unknowingly suddenly discovered the amazing tree house situated at the top of a slope! Followed by excited shrieks of delight they made their way hurriedly up the steep slope to the top. It’s an outstanding piece of craftsmanship that can be enjoyed by both young and slightly older people! (OK, I can vouch for the fact that the climbing wall is fun and the slide is very fast!)
After a while, we made our way back towards the direction of the visitor centre where we had started and then followed a path in an easterly direction. The pond area is lovely with much to observe and all around are named trees and plants to study.
Meet the pigs in Ampfield Wood
Do make sure that you make the effort to walk an extra few minutes over to Ampfield Wood to visit a few resident pigs munching happily in a woodland setting.
Occasionally along the paths you will discover a little wooden bridge, an unusual sculpture or simply a beautiful viewpoint. Continuing with our walk, this led us around Jermyns House (where it is said that Sunday lunch is delicious!) and onto the education garden which is lovely.
Delicious treats at the visitor centre
Upon arriving back at the visitor centre, the children reminded us of the great importance of trying out the cakes in the pavilion tearooms! Needless to say, the hot chocolate along with cream and marshmallows, accompanied by chocolate cake, carrot cake and coffee and walnut cake were a delicious treat!
- Lewis: A lovely place to visit, the gardens were very picturesque and we had great fun in the tree house! The café got the thumbs up!
- Oliver: I loved observing the beautiful plants and trees and would love to go again soon. The tree house was fabulous and my Granddad would love it here. I can’t wait for him to visit!
- Harriet: I liked running around the whole gardens and playing in the tree house. I liked the climbing wall without holding onto the rope! I loved seeing beautiful flowers growing really high.