Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit

Once upon a time, I took a train from London out to the delightful city of Bath: wherein, I rented a car & headed north for an epic left-side-of-the-road tour of the Cotswolds!  This is one of England’s most idyllic spots, with pastures, rolling green hills, the cutest, most charming little villages you’ve ever seen, with equally charming names….such as Chipping Campden & Stow-on-the-Wold.   If you love Agatha Christie novels, you will love the Cotswolds.  And another very good reason to visit is to tour its famous gardens.  In this article, we’ll take a tour of the “Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit.”

Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit, Girl Who Travels the World

Kiftsgate Court Gardens are located by the town of Mickleton.

Map of Famous Cotswold Gardens

If you look at the map below, you’ll see that certain gardens are located quite close together, such as Hidcote Manor Gardens & Kiftsgate Court Gardens.  This makes for a great pairing, as do Snowshill Manor Gardens & Sudeley Castle, then further south: Painswick Rococo Garden & the Highgrove Royal Gardens.

Hidcote Manor Garden

Kiftsgate Court Gardens

Painswick Rococco Garden

Highgrove Royal Gardens

Sudeley Castle & Gardens

Snowshill Manor Garden

Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit

1) Hidcote Manor Garden

We’re starting our garden tour in the north, at perhaps the Cotswolds’ most famous garden: Hidcote Manor Garden.  Known as an “Arts & Crafts” style-garden, one of my favorite things about Hidcote is its use of various “Garden Rooms.”  Of all the gardens I’ve toured throughout my travels, this one stands clearest in my memory.  Though the main house was built in the 1600’s, the present gardens can most be attributed to the work of Lawrence Johnston, who purchased the property in 1907. 

A visit here will provide you endless inspiration as you seek to design your own garden….

Hidcote Manor Garden Hours: 10AM-5PM DAILY.

Hidcote Manor Gardens, Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit, Girl Who Travels the World

One of the distinctive aspects of Hidcote is the imposing home that greets you as you arrive…

The Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit, Girl Who Travels the World

There are many quiet corners at Hidcote….

2) Kiftsgate Court Gardens

Right across the road from Hidcote is Kiftsgate Court Gardens.  If you’re longing to tour a Cotswold garden created by three generations of women gardeners: make sure to stop at Kiftsgate.  Known for its fragrant blooms, its “Wild Garden” & “Orchard Avenue,” as well as its “White Sunken Garden,” these gardens distinctly have the feminine touch ~ thanks to Heather Muir, Diany Binny, & Anne Chambers.

Kiftsgate Court Garden Hours: Sunday – Thursday, 12PM-6PM; CLOSED on Friday & Saturday.

Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit, Girl Who Travels the World

A “sunken” garden below the main house at Kiftsgate…

Where to Stay by Hidcote & Kiftsgate Court: The closest & coziest accommodations to both gardens are located in the nearby town of Mickleton, at the Three Ways House. This 19th-century property has flower-filled gardens, & is less than 2 miles from both Hidcote & Kiftsgate.

Where to Stay by Hidcote Manor, Girl Who Travels the World

The Three Ways House Hotel is the best place to stay by both Hidcote Manor Gardens & Kiftsgate…

Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit

3) Sudeley Castle & Gardens

When I visited the Cotswolds, I stayed in the town of Winchcombe, which is the closest village to Sudeley Castle.  As I drove along the country roads, a castle emerged from the landscape & I pulled over to take a picture of the whole dreamy scene.  It turned out, the castle was in fact Sudeley, & I later visited its beautiful grounds with climbing pink roses & 1,200 total acres of land.  Though the estate is large, I still found the gardens & grounds quite charming…

Sudeley Castle Hours: 10AM-5PM DAILY.

Best Castle Gardens to Visit in the Cotswolds, Girl Who Travels the World

Sudeley Castle & Gardens.

Best Castle Gardens to Visit in the Cotswolds, Girl Who Travels the World

Sudeley has 10 different gardens spread out over 15 acres.


Where to Stay by Sudeley Castle: You don’t have to go far to find great accommodations, as the Sudeley Castle Guest Cottages are right on property. Or if you’d rather be closer to town, try the Castle Gatehouse.

Castle Gatehouse, Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit, Girl Who Travels the WOrld

The Castle Gatehouse is a charming place to stay near Sudeley Castle.

Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit

4) Painswick Rococo Gardens

Painswick is unique in that it’s the only surviving Rococo garden in England.  And it may be the “quirkiest” garden on this list, as it was designed in the 1700’s to be a frivolous “Pleasure Garden” for its owners.  Today, it houses an “Enchanted Garden” which delights children especially, magical follies are sprinkled throughout the property, as well as a maze, a Children’s Play Area, & there’s a Cafe to stop & have lunch or coffee at.

Painswick Hours: Wednesday – Sunday, 10AM-5PM; CLOSED on Monday & Tuesdays.

Painswick Rococo Garden, Best Cotswold Gardens, Girl Who Travels the WOrld

Painswick is a scenic Cotswold garden that was established in the 18th-century.

5) Highgrove Royal Gardens

Highgrove House is the private residence of Prince Charles, & its impressive gardens reflect his passion for horticulture & gardening.  Here you’ll find a peaceful Wildflower Meadow, a Sundial Garden, a Kitchen Garden, & even a Lily Pool Garden!  And don’t miss The Stumpery, which is a woodland garden complete with a thatched tree house.  There’s a lot to explore here, & you can join a group Garden Tour, opt for a Private Tour, or enjoy a Champagne Tea Tour.

Highgrove Tours: Book your Highgrove Garden Tour here.

Best Coffee Table Gardening Books, Girl Who Gardens

Incredibly tall foxgloves & delphiniums at Highgrove Royal Gardens.

Where to Stay by Painswick & Highgrove: Painswick & Highgrove are far enough apart that they warrant their own hotel recommendations. If you’re visiting Painswick’s Gardens, I’d suggest staying at the fashionable Painswick Hotel; for Highgrove, stay in Tetbury’s darling Great Tythe Barn.

The Painswick, Where to Stay by Painswick Rococo Gardens, Girl Who Travels the World

The Painswick is a first-class place to stay in the Cotswolds..

Best Cotswold Gardens to Visit

That concludes our Cotswold garden tour….but for more British-inspired fun, find out how to create your own English cottage garden, or learn how to have a Downtown Abbey-inspired holiday

xoxo Noelia

Read Next: Best Bed & Breakfasts in the Cotswolds

Pin It

5 Gorgeous Cotswold Gardens to Visit in England! Girl Who Travels the World