From a priory garden to a Capability Brown masterpiece, we recommend the best gardens to visit in Yorkshire.


For more inspiration for days out, don't miss our guide to the best water gardens in the UK and gardens you can visit via public transport.

Gardens to visit Yorkshire

RHS Garden Harlow Carr

The Subtropical border at RHS Garden Harlow Carr.

At the RHS's most northerly garden you'll find lakeside gardens, a Sub-Tropicana Garden, an arboretum and a Scented Garden.

Enjoy the main borders and the dramatic Sandstone Rock Garden, or take a stroll through the garden's Woodland where you can walk under majestic oak trees, hunt for toadstools and breath in the fresh air.

RHS Garden Harlow Carr, Crag Lane, Beckwithshaw, Harrogate, North Yorkshire HG3 1QB,

Rowes at Priory Gardens

Established in 1962 as a market garden on the grounds around a medieval priory, Rowes has been growing its stunning cut flowers for 50 years. Among them are tulips, cornflowers, scabious, larkspurs, salvias, rudbeckias and, of course, dahlias. You can book your cutting session online or buy PYO gift vouchers for loved ones. They host wedding flower workshops and 'Pick & Paint A Posy' sessions, where you pick your flowers and paint them under the guidance of a professional artist.

Priory Gardens, Bow Street, Guisborough, TS14 6PR,

Himalayan Garden and Sculpture Park

Himalayan water garden

The acid soil and abundance of springs in this woodland garden makes it ideal for its collection rhododendrons, azaleas and magnolias. There are three lakes, one of them adorned with a floating magnolia sculpture. This is one of 87 sculptures and land art in the gorgeous grounds.

The Himalayan Garden & Sculpture Park, The Hutts, Hutts Lane, Grewelthorpe, Ripon, HG4 3DA,

Castle Howard

Planted as recently as the 1960s, Ray Wood, in the grounds of this historic house, is a fine example of a woodland garden. Created by Jim Russell to allow for artistic rides and glades, it includes Pieris, wild roses, rare magnolias, hydrangeas, viburnums, maples and rowans, all providing a feast of autumn garden interest.

Castle Howard, Near Malton, York YO60 7DA,

Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Robert Indiana, Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Photo: © Jonty Wilde, courtesy of Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Artwork: © 2022 Morgan Art Foundation Ltd./ Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/DACS, London

Enjoy towering works of art in the fresh air at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, covering 500 acres of land, including hills, woodland and formal gardens. The park was originally owned by the Beaumont family, but would later become a part of Bretton Hall College. It was here that art lecturer Peter Murray had the idea of opening the space up to the public and asked artists to create works that engaged with the natural surroundings. Recent artists that have exhibited include Damien Hirst, Joana Vasconcelos and Alfredo Jaar.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park, West Bretton, Wakefield WF4 4LG,

Harewood House Gardens

Harewood House
© Harewood House Trust

Italianate Terrace, designed by Sir Charles Barry in the 1840s, stretches along the southern aspect of the House and provides stunning views over Yorkshire’s most beautiful landscape and lake.

Crafted by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown, Harewood’s landscape encompasses over 1000 acres and represents one of Brown’s most famous vistas. Away from the formal gardens, Harewood also boasts the naturalistic Himalayan Garden which was redeveloped by Head Gardener, Trevor Nicholson.

Harewood House, Harewood, Leeds LS17 9LG,

York Gate

Once the private garden of talented plantswoman Sybil Spencer, who designed it with her son, Robin, this one-acre garden near Leeds has been owned and managed by Perennial, the charity for people in horticulture, since 1994. Divided into 14 rooms, it offers plenty of inspiration throughout the year.

York Gate, Church Lane, Leeds LS16 8DW,

Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal

Visitors walking through the grounds of Fountains Abbey
© Chris Lacey

The grounds of this cistercian abbey ruin make for a wonderfully atmospheric walk. You can walk around the water gardens and along riverside paths to the deer park, home to red, fallow and sika deer. There are many ancient trees within the deer park such as sweet chestnut, limes and oak. As well as the riverside walk, the extensive parklands are covered in footpaths and trails, suitable for all ages and abilities.

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Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal, Ripon, North Yorkshire HG4 3DY,


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Abigail is a freelance writer and editor based in Hereford.