Yorkshire gardens in the Spring are usually at their finest in April and May. Due to being 200 miles further north of London, they tend to begin to bloom later and are always a few weeks behind their southern cousins. Tulips have been magnificent this year and there is still time to catch the stunning displays that welcome in the start of spring.
Here are our top Yorkshire gardens to visit this Spring but remember, always check the attraction website before visiting to pre-book and be fully aware of safety measures in place.
Beningbrough Hall and Gardens, York
Shaped by the people that have lived there for a period of over 300 years, the award-winning gardens are beautiful all year round. From stunning gardens to play areas and a walled garden restaurant, there are an abundance of things to see and do. The Hall itself is imposing with riverside and woodland walks close by.
Botanical Gardens, Sheffield
For residents of Sheffield these gardens are a real treasure, especially as they are so close to the city centre. Opened in 1836, they are English Heritage listed and a Grade II site of special and architectural interest. The giant glass pavilions too are a welcome and interesting retreat to look around especially if you get caught in an April shower – in May!
Brodsworth Hall & Gardens, Doncaster
This garden at this country estate near Doncaster is one of the most beautiful to visit in South Yorkshire. Taken over by English Heritage in 1990, the gardens have been meticulously restored and conserved. The Rose garden here is really special and a perfect place to visit before having a drink in the outdoor café.
Burnby Hall and Gardens, Pocklington
These magnificent gardens are a delight to visit at any time of the year but especially now to catch their magnificent annual tulip festival. The Aviary Garden forms the centrepiece of the festival before being planted up with annual bedding plants to provide a wide variety of colours during the Summer. The Edwardian potting shed is the home of the Aviary with cockatiels, budgerigars and zebra finches. The gardens have a concrete path that run around the whole garden and it is accessible for all ages as well as wheelchairs. Children will be bewitched by the masses of carp found in the lakes that literally leap out of the water as you walk by. In fact the Upper and Lower lakes are home to a National collection of over 100 varieties of Hardy Water Lily (Nymphaea) that can be seen from mid-June. The Victorian and Rock gardens are stunning as is the Stumpery, essentially a garden feature constructed using upturned roots of large trees. Families and children will also love trying to find the Secret Garden!
Burton Agnes Hall, East Yorkshire
From the first sign of snowdrops to the last of the autumn colour this garden is always a delight to visit. There tulip displays are no exception. The Hall, gardens, woodland and adventure playground are all open and the walled garden contains thousands of species, herbaceous borders, a jungle garden and collection of campanulas, a yew maze and even giant games!
Constable Burton Hall & Gardens, near Leyburn – Tulip Season Open Gardens 21-23 May
Over 6000 tulips with amazing colour themed planting schemes in the borders as well as tranquil woodland walks, picnic areas and garden trails. Away from the tulips, the trails feature cyclamen, lilies, ferns, hardy shrubs, wild-flowers and roses.
RHS Harlow Carr, Harrogate
Always a delightful garden to visit at any time, it is particularly lovely in May. With new awe-inspiring plantings, there is always something new to delight the visitor and ideas for the keen gardener to try at home. Yellows and golds dominate spring at Harlow Carr and the woodland terraces are bursting with colour at the moment and further into the woodland, the imposing old oak trees are blanketed by spring flowers. And don’t forget they have Bettys Café Tea Rooms here!
Harewood House, West Yorkshire
Reflection and mindfulness are high on the agenda at Harewood House and the setting is perfect to take the time out needed to recharge and relax. With three circular park walks now open (the North Park, South Park and Lakeside Tour), you can now access new areas of Harewood. From 29 May, families will also be able to enjoy Harewood’s Woodland Wonderland with winding willow mazes.
Himalayan Gardens and Sculpture Park, Grewelthorpe near Masham
Not strictly a tulip garden, we had to mention them as these are truly exceptional when they burst into their May blooms. Winner of the Yorkshire in Bloom Tourist Attraction Awards in 2018 and 2019 and with over 45 acres to explore, the park is home to over 80 contemporary sculptures. It is also considered to have the North’s biggest collection of azaleas, rhododendrons and magnolias.
Thorp Perrow, Bedale
A fantastic place to stroll around that is extremely child friendly. With an adventure playground, Tea Room and Bird of Prey/Mammal Centre open, there is much to admire here. With Spring trail maps available at the ticket office, the clouds of fragrant blossoms will entice the senses during your stroll.