Mottisfont Abbey, Romsey, Hampshire
Anyone who comes to Mottisfont Abbey in Hampshire will undoubtedly want to linger because it’s just so beautiful; this wonderful 18th century house is built around a medieval priory, and you can still see the vaulted cellarium that was used as a larder in the 13th century. The house was used as an artists’ retreat in the 1930s and this is reflected with a modern art collection on the top floor gallery, and a drawing room that was painted by Rex Whistler.
The beautiful riverside gardens are a dream, with rolling lawns, stately trees, and little paths meandering round and about; it’s all so dreamy but of particular note is the colourful winter garden and the gorgeous walled rose garden where the fragrance of hundreds of blooms hangs on the air in the summer.
You could easily spend a whole day here, exploring the estate. There’s something very special about striding out across the fields with the dog, and hearing the squeals of delight from the little ones as they discover the wild play areas. Dress them in their old togs and let them have fun in the Climbing Bog, and you can all join in and make a den in the woods. Go and see Fred’s Fishing Hut, the Bottomless Cavern, and go splashing about in the Pump, Pool and Paddle area.
If you can’t wait till you get home for tea, go to the Old Kitchen or the Coach House Café and have a cheeky slice of cake and a cup of tea; there’ll be menus for the kids, so they’ll be happy too.
Opening times for the house and gardens vary throughout the year so please check the website before you go. Entry is free for the under 5’s.
T: 01794 340757 All information correct at the time of writing