The Gardens of Cornwall: Days Out and Day Trips from the Polurrian
In the second of our series on Cornwall’s great gardens, from formal sites to wild woodlands, we’ve rounded up our favourites close to or handy for day-trips from our Polurrian Bay Hotel. Some are open year-round, but check individual websites for dates and sites.
Spring is a wonderful time to visit some of Cornwall’s 40 fabulous gardens, free of the summer crowds. This region’s abundance of gardens and often rare plants and trees is in part due to the warmth of the Gulf Stream.
Glendurgan Garden, Falmouth
This National Trust sub-tropical valley garden descends to the Helford River at the fishing village of Durgan and includes a historic maze.
Potager Garden, Falmouth
Close to the Helford Estuary, this is an informal kitchen garden with herbaceous plants, vegetables and fruit, plus a welcoming café in a glasshouse.
Trebah Garden, Mawnan Smith
Close to Falmouth, this sub-tropical garden with its stunning coastal backdrop and four miles of footpath has won environmental awards.
Carminowe Valley Garden, Porthleven
Native oak woodland with walks, a natural pond and a brook contrast with formal areas in this abundant spot.
Lamorran House Gardens, St Mawes
Mediterranean in style, this sub-tropical paradise has lovely views over glittering Falmouth Bay and lots of giardini segreti (intimate compartments) for visitors to find and explore.
Minack Theatre, Porthcurno
This famous open-air theatre, carved into a granite cliff, has glorious gardens with views of Porthcurno Bay.
Tregrehan, St Austell
Affiliated with Kew Gardens and especially well known for its camellias, this garden has a historical collection but a modern approach.
Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens, Penzance
These large, restored valley gardens combine sub-tropical planting with woodland dotted with globally important artworks, plus wonderful views over St Michael's Mount.
Bosahan Garden, Helston
Nestled in a valley near the Helford River, with river and sea views, this characterful garden is claimed to have been an inspiration for Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca.
Kestle Barton Gallery & Garden, Helston
This restored ancient farmstead is set in fields and woods high above Frenchman’s Creek and the Helford River, with the garden itself created in the old south-facing mow-hay beside a wildflower meadow.
Godolphin House and Estate, Helston
This atmospheric National Trust site has peaceful, romantic gardens and a long and compelling history.
See also our blog on great Cornwall gardens handy for Fowey Hall.
Top image: Glendurgan Garden, ©National Trust/Andrew Butler. Bottom image: Goldolphin House, ©National Trust