A spring-time tour of Cornwall's prettiest gardens
Product: www.hfholidays.co.uk Price: £889.00 Rating: ★★★★★ (5/5)
Spring is the perfect season to explore the remarkable gardens of south-west Cornwall so I jumped at the opportunity to visit 10 of them at a time when the renowned magnolias, camellias and azaleas are at their best. My friend Judy and I joined a group of 20 fellow garden lovers for seven nights, staying at Chy Morvah, hf holidays’ house in St Ives.
Under the kindly guidance of horticulture expert, Wendy Tolson, we visited two gardens a day, taking with us a generous picnic lunch which we ate in the glorious surroundings of gardens such as Trewithen, Trengwainton and Trebah. (Yes, it does seem that almost every Cornish place name begins with Tre, but we also went to Glendurgan, Caerhays Castle and the lost gardens of Heligan!)
Among the many highlights of the holiday were eating ice creams on the beach at Trebah, being given a guided tour of the unique woodland garden at Caerhays Castle by the deputy head gardener and taking a boat up the Fal estuary to disembark at Trelissick gardens.
Gardeners are a convivial bunch and soon we were all on first-name terms and still happily chatting about our days out over excellent dinners back at Chy Morvah. We were a mixed crew of singletons and married couples; many of the people we met were long-time devotees of hf holidays and some of them had travelled from as far afield as Scotland and Canada. By the end of the week, addresses were being exchanged as well as promises to supply each other with cuttings and plants from our own gardens.
In the evenings, we could either join in the activities organised by the group leaders (which included a fascinating talk on the history of Cornwall as well as an ‘antiques roadshow’ quiz) or do our own thing. The pubs and restaurants of St Ives were only a short walk away but after a day out in the open air, Judy and I were were usually happy to retire early to our comfortable en-suite room with a TV and sea view.
The cost of our holiday, sharing a twin room, was £889 per person for 7 nights which included all our meals, travel by mini-bus and the cost of entry to all the gardens we visited.
For more information or to book, visit hf holidays here
There's currently a special introductory offer available exclusively for Yours readers. You can save £50 per person on a seven-night Garden Tour with the code GDT until 31 August 2016.
Terms and conditions apply. Subject to availability. Not available retrospectively. Single room and sole occupancy charges may apply. Non member associate fee of £5. Prices per person. Visit www.hfholidays.co.uk for more information.