The best Sussex gardens for you to explore this summer
Sussex Gardens to explore
The South of England is blessed with more sunshine than most other parts of the UK, so it should be no surprise the gardens across Sussex are some of the most visited and renowned in the country. The Great Sussex Way have handpicked those that should be on your must see list this August, and with the Eroica Britannia Sporting and Heroic routes taking in several on the list, you’ll be wanting to visit the rest as part of your trip to Sussex and the South Downs National Park.
Petworth House’s stunning grounds are the work of legendary landscape designer Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown. During the 1750s and 60s Brown transformed the formal gardens to create the majestic lakes and wide open, natural looking spaces you see in the park today. Those taking part in the Heroic Route will get to cycle through the part shortly after the Petworth Places Pitstop on Hampers Green. Closer to the house, in the Pleasure Grounds, also the work of Capability Brown, you will find winding paths which showcase the informal, seasonal planting.
West Dean Gardens is one of the greatest restored gardens open to the public today. Our cycle through the grounds on the Sporting and Heroic rides and decent through the arboretum will be one of the highlights, but the sunken garden and working Victorian glasshouses containing exotic plants and orchids, strawberries, figs, nectarines, peaches, and a variety of other fruits deserve a return to be explored.
At the heart of Stansted Park‘s 1800 acres of parkland and ancient forest stands an Edwardian Mansion, former home of the Ponsonby family. Surrounding the house you will discover a charming walled garden, with its popular tearoom (where we highly recommend a coffee stop) the Dutch Garden, Arboretum and Yew Maze. Our experience stop on the Sporting and Heroic routes will give you time to explore.
Several others, as featured by The Great Sussex Way in their round-up on Great Gardens in Sussex, are very close to the routes our riders will take in August, but even as cyclists we realise each of these is best seen on foot. It is certainly worth extending your weekend beyond Eroica Britannia to explore the many incredible gardens Sussex has to offer.
To read the full story with features on the best gardens to visit, go to https://www.thegreatsussexway.org/things-to-do/great-sussex-gardens-chichester/
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