See the Isle of Wight's gardens in bloom with Christine Walkden
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The Isle of Wight is often called the 'Garden Isle', thanks to its sunny, warmer- than-average weather and abundance of exotic plants.
On this wonderful 2021 tour, you'll hop across the Solent and stay in Cowes to visit the sub-tropical Ventnor Botanic gardens, stunning herbaceous borders of Nunwell House, award-winning displays at Morton Manor and Mediterranean influenced grounds of Mottistone.
Following our best-selling tour of the Cotswolds with Christine Walkden, we've invited her to join you at Osborne House, where she will give a private talk, answer all your horticultural questions and take part in a special tour of the grounds with the head gardener.
This is a perfect UK break for green-fingered readers departing next spring - the best possible time of year to go.
Reasons to book
Isle of Wight horticultural highlights
Explore Osborne House
Fascinating garden visits
- Return ferry crossings between Portsmouth and Fishbourne
- Three nights' dinner, bed and breakfast at the three-star New Holmwood Hotel, Cowes
- Guided tour of Osborne House and Gardens
- Exclusive talk and Q&A session with Christine Walkden at Osborne House
- Lunch in the Terrace Restaurant at Osborne House with Christine Walkden
- Visits to Shanklin Village and Gorge, Ventnor Botanic Garden, the gardens of Nunwell House, Morton Manor and Mottistone Manor
- Comfortable coaching throughout
- Services of a Brightwater Holidays tour manager
Day1Visit ShanklinShanklin, United Kingdom
Today you will catch a late morning ferry from Portsmouth to Fishbourne on the Isle of Wight. Your first stop will be the worldfamous Shanklin Chine, which drops 105ft from the top of the cliff to sea level. Enjoy a leisurely walk through the gorge, a natural fissure formed by water cutting through sandstone to the sea. The deeply shaded path winds down beside waterfalls to the shore, which is flanked by more than 150 varieties of wild plants and species of moss. This afternoon, you will have some free time to wander Shanklin's picturesque Old Village before travelling to Cowes to checkin at the New Holmwood Hotel where dinner will be served. D
Day2Nunwell House and Ventnor Botanic GardenVentnor, United Kingdom
After breakfast you'll travel to the privately owned gardens at Nunwell House. The gardens were first documented in 1640 when John Oglander recorded that the parlour garden had "all sorts of French flowers and tulips." In the afternoon, you will continue to Ventnor Botanic Garden, famous for its collection of rare plants. The subtropical Undercliff location makes it an ideal environment for rare plants, which are hard to grow elsewhere in the UK. You will then return to your hotel for dinner. B, D
Day3Morton Manor and Mottistone ManorMorton Manor, United Kingdom
Following breakfast, you will start the day at Morton Manor, which has won the Isle of Wight In Bloom competition several times in recent years and has twice been winner of Southern England in Bloom. Dating back to 1249, the manor boasts a huge collection of Japanese Acers and an Elizabethan sunken garden within a handsomely landscaped garden of mature specimen trees. After lunch, you will travel to Mottistone Manor, which has a colourful array of borders, shrubs and flowering fruit trees overlooking sea views. Here, Christine Walkden will join you as you tour the gardens. This evening you'll return to your hotel for dinner. B, L, D
Day4Osborne HouseOsborne House, United Kingdom
After breakfast, you'll check out of your hotel and travel to Osborne House and Gardens, accompanied by Christine. Queen Victoria's favourite home, Osborne House boasts the most impressive formal gardens on the island. You'll enjoy a tour with the head gardener, as well as a unique glimpse inside the residence. After lunch in the Terrace Restaurant you'll enjoy a fascinating talk from Christine, with time for questions. You will then be transferred back to Fishbourne for your return ferry and onward journey home. B, L
New Holmwood Hotel
A lovely three-star hotel on the water's edge in pretty Cowes
You will stay throughout your trip at the three-star New Holmwood Hotel in Cowes. On the water's edge at Egypt's Point, the hotel enjoys panoramic views of the Solent. The 26 rooms are comfortable and well equipped, with super king-sized beds and en-suite bathrooms. The sea-facing lounge and restaurant open onto two outdoor terraces, perfect for watching the activity on the water.
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