Spring is the perfect time to explore the beautiful gardens and parks in and around Bath. Here are some of the finest where you can stretch your legs, enjoy the greenery, and catch up alfresco with loved ones.

American Museum and Gardens

Image - American Museum

American Museum & Gardens

The American Museum is unique as the only museum dedicated to Americana outside of the United States. As well as the outstanding collection of art and cultural objects inside the stately Georgian house, visit for a walk around the old Italianate-style manorial pleasure gardens and parkland. Take in a replica of George Washington's garden at Mount Vernon, a Lewis and Clark trail, and wonderful views over the Limpley Stoke Valley and River Avon thanks to the museum's hilltop location. 

Refuel on seasonal food, sweet treats, and hot drinks from the Garden Café. Little legs can let off steam in the fun Children's Garden playground too. 

Botanical Garden at Royal Victoria Park

Image - Royal Victoria Park

The Botanical Gardens at Royal Victoria Park

Dating back to 1887, the Botanical Gardens are a little oasis nearby to the city centre, filling a nine-acre section of Royal Victoria Park. Free to visit, there’s a beautiful woodland garden, herbaceous border, rock garden and pool, aerial walkway and more to explore. 

Sydney Gardens in Bath

Image - Sydney Gardens

Bath’s Public Parks

As well as Royal Victoria Park, Bath has a lovely selection of public gardens and parks that you can visit for free...

Parade Gardens is another city centre park with fine views of Pulteney Bridge and the weir, with a small entry fee of £2 per adult and £1 for children over 5. 

Iford Manor gardens

Image - Iford Manor

Iford Manor Gardens

Set in the Frome River valley, Iford Manor is home to Grade I listed gardens designed by renowned Edwardian landscape designer Harold Peto. Head here for an idyllic wander among Italian, Byzantine, ancient Roman and Oriental garden designs accented with statues, columns, terraces, and architecture. 

From 6th April, the café will be open for lunches, afternoon tea and snacks with views over the valley. There are also regular behind-the-scenes garden tours as well as evening champagne tours with Iford's owner, William Cartwright-Hignett. 

Dyrham Park garden

Image - Dyrham Park, credit Beth Weston

Dyrham Park

While the baroque-style house at National Trust's Dyrham Park is currently closed for conservation work (it's due to reopen at Easter), the extensive grounds are all open to explore. Amble over ancient parkland, through formal 21st-century gardens with echoes from the past, and around the tranquil zig-zagging woodland terraces. Get the most out of your visit by following one of the self-guided walking trails, which chart the estate's history, show off the artistry of the gardens, and introduce you to sweeping vistas across the channel. 

Gardens at Bowood House

Image - Bowood House and Gardens

Bowood House and Gardens

Based in the Wiltshire countryside, the picturesque grounds at Bowood House include ‘Capability’ Brown parkland, a walled garden, an Italian-inspired terrace garden, and an ever-changing herbaceous border. Let the kids loose on the Adventure Playground, complete with two new jumping pillows, plus activities at The Den, and stop for treats at the Treehouse Café or take along a picnic.

For six weeks from 15th May, you’ll also be able to enjoy bluebells, azaleas, magnolias, and rhododendrons in the beautiful Woodland Gardens, which open just for the flowering season. Originally laid out in 1854 by the 3rd Marquess of Lansdowne (a former Chancellor of the Exchequer, Home Secretary and confidante of Queen Victoria), the garden features some of the earliest known hybrids in the UK. 

Couple looking at cherry blossom at Westonbirt

Image - Westonbirt, credit Johnny Hathaway

Westonbirt, The National Arboretum

It's famed for its autumn colours, but Westonbirt should be on your spring hitlist too. A gorgeous array of colours sweep the 600-acre arboretum as exotic magnolias, camellias, and rhododendrons bloom into life. As well as walking the 17 miles of paths and testing your tree identification skills (there's around 3000 different species to spot!), there are often events, workshops and family activities to enjoy.

Bishop's Palace in Wells

Image - The Bishop's Palace and Gardens

The Bishop's Palace and Gardens

The Bishop’s Palace was the medieval home of the Bishop of Bath and Wells for over 800 years – the well pools there inspired the city’s name. Admire them in the 14-acre RHS-partner gardens along with herbaceous borders, a pretty parterre, an arboretum, a Garden of Reflection, and a fourteenth-century moat surrounding the palace. It’s a peaceful place to while away a few hours, with the palace itself open to visitors too. 

Somerset Lavender Farm

For a relaxing stroll, head to the family-run Somerset Lavender Farm in Faulkland. Take in the soothing scents of 50,000 lavender plants and visit the shop to pick up your own lavender plants (May is the perfect time to plant them). 

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American Museum & Gardens
Museum
American Museum & Gardens

The only museum of American decorative and folk art outside the United States.

Iford Manor Gardens
Garden
Iford Manor Gardens

Breathtakingly pretty 18th century manor surrounded by award-winning Italianate gardens.

Dyrham Park
Historic House/Palace
Dyrham Park

Dyrham Park is nestled in 270 acres of parkland filled with magnificent trees and breathtaking views. Inside the house, visitors can get a flavour of 17th-century life while the garden includes formal borders, ponds and an orchard.

Bowood House and Gardens
Historic House/Palace
Bowood House & Gardens outside

Set in 100 acres of Capability Brown Grade I parkland, Bowood House is the magnificent home of the Lansdown family.

Westonbirt, The National Arboretum
Garden
Westonbirt, The National Arboretum

Arboretum with over 15,000 rare and beautiful trees, all set in 600 glorious, easy-to-stroll Cotswold acres

The Bishop's Palace & Gardens
Historic House/Palace
The Bishop's Palace Wells

A medieval Bishop's Palace in Wells with 14 acres of mature, landscaped gardens to enjoy.

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