Wednesday, 1 June 2016

The Lost Gardens of Heligan with a baby

One of my favourite outings we did while in Cornwall recently was the Lost Gardens of Heligan. This large garden is on the south coast near Mevagissey. It used to be a huge and beautiful country estate which fell to into ruin after most of the staff left to fight in the war and never came back. It was rediscovered in the early 90's and brought back to its former glory. And glorious it is too!

My husband is massively green fingered, but even if you aren't, it's a beautiful place to walk around. There is a mix of formal gardens, vegetable gardens, woodland, fields, more wild bits, play areas and a pond in the valley.

There was an almost endless array of flowers. We went mid May but I expect there's plenty to see throughout the season. There were lots of these 'tangly trees' as I call them (I'm no horticulturist) which I just love and don't know how a child would resist climbing them.

Andrew was about 4 months old when we visited. We decided in advance to use the baby carrier rather than a pushchair and I'm glad we did. The formal gardens and vegetable gardens are pretty accessible, but beyond that there are some very steep paths that I wouldn't have risked with a pushchair. The map of the gardens does denote them as 'steep' or 'very steep' and it isn't lying! Some of the less formal areas are actually quite wild. The paths are wide and clear but our none all-terrain pushchair wouldn't have managed. When we were visiting the bluebells happened to be in bloom and the woodlands were truly magical.

As well as beautiful formal gardens and woodland walks there are a few animals to find on the way. You'll spot the chickens, geese and Shire horse easily. You'll have to be a bit more eagle-eyed to find the pigs (my favourite).

We did brave some of the steeper paths. I managed them fine despite being dreadfully unfit. I was 4 months post c-section. If you're even below average fitness, you should be able to cope. There are plenty of benches too. I'm glad my husband was carrying Andrew though.

We hadn't intended on going over the rope bridge, however the path we meant to take was closed that day and we didn't want to back track on ourselves. So over the rope bridge, baby and all, we went. Just as well we didn't bring the pushchair. I'm sure there are beautiful views from here, but I was concentrating too hard to notice them.

It being Cornwall, there are some beautifully exotic looking plants we don't get up north. I was particularly obsessed with the tree ferns. There are loads of them!

And you can't really talk about Heligan without mentioning the Mud Maid. There are a few sculptures dotted about the place, but she is the most famous. And very pretty she is too.

I would definitely recommend the Lost Gardens of Heligan for pretty much anyone. I saw people of every age there, and you can also bring your dog on a lead. There is also a very nice looking restaurant and a shop I could spend a dangerous amount of money in. Too much nice stuff in there! Heligan will probably become a regular feature of any future trips we make to Cornwall.

No comments:

Post a Comment