Great Dixter House & Gardens

Great Dixter House & Gardens

Great Dixter House & Gardens
4
Tuesday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Great Dixter is a garden you can immerse yourself in, vibrant, daring and exciting. Once the family home of the great gardener and garden writer Christopher Lloyd, now led by Fergus Garrett. Great Dixter is gardened remaining true to the personality of Christo. It is a highly managed garden that is bold, experimental and has a long season. It is exuberant yet rich in biodiversity. We value authenticity, we do not ‘mock up’ areas of the house but remain true to the way Christopher lived. We want our visitors to feel as if they’ve stepped into another world. There is little signage or signs of being in a garden open to the public, Great Dixter still feels like a family home. We train students and scholars from all over the world creating an inspirational working environment with interesting horticultural discussions. We welcome professionals from the world of horticulture, design and ecology. We garden with biodiversity at the forefront of our minds.
Duration: More than 3 hours
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  • Annaliese B
    22 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A wet and wonderful day
    Even though it was a terrible day weather wise we had the best day today at Great Dixter. The gardens are glorious, so many fabulous plants which even in the driving rain looked amazing. The house is just beautiful and the house staff were very knowledgeable. We had lunch and afternoon tea in the cafe in the garden and I was so pleased that I could eat nearly everything on the menu even though I’m coeliac and need a gluten free diet…the scones were really delicious. The nursery was fully stocked and so plenty of the plants had to come home with us. Such a fun day which I’ll look forward to repeating soon.
    Thank you for leaving us this review. We are really pleased that you enjoyed your visit. It sounds like you thoroughly enjoyed everything we have to offer, even taking a little bit of Dixter home for your own garden. Thank you for visiting and we hope you come again.
    Written February 21, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited August 2023
    Written August 2, 2023
  • Sam P
    Sittingbourne, United Kingdom14 contributions
    3.0 of 5 bubbles
    Mixed experience. Love the gardens, not the Swarms of wasps in the cafe
    Have always loved Great Dixter, sunken garden stunning as always, the wind and heavy rain have taken their toll on other areas. Do not eat at the cafe if you are at all worried by wasps, absolutely inundated with them. Customers were throwing sweet cakes away to avoid eating wasps, perfectly understandable if Dixter don't wish to kill wasps but warning signs should be put up prior to purchasing refreshments particularly for those with small children. Usually nothing but praise for Dixter.
    Hello, thank you for your review. We did indeed have a wasp problem last Summer. I am sorry that this bothered you. The team at the Loggia Cafe tried very hard to attract the wasps away and we did have wasp traps but it took a while for us to get them under control. We do take this issue seriously and hope that we now have a more effective solution.
    Written February 21, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written August 14, 2023
  • Debra H
    8 contributions
    3.0 of 5 bubbles
    Don’t order the ploughman’s lunch!
    We were really disappointed with the cafe there. The ploughman’s lunch was inedible, it looked nothing like a ploughman’s should look! I’d say It consisted of mostly green leaves and everything was cut into the tiniest pieces! They put three small bits of cheese, a tiny bit of bread and relish, they said they’d no tomatoes and It tasted horrible so I ended up leaving it which was annoying as it was really expensive . I’ve been to many restaurants etc and this was definitely the worse. Not good.
    Oh dear! We are sorry that you didn't enjoy your ploughmans. We try very hard to make sure all of our visitors are happy with the food they buy in the Loggia cafe, and honestly, we rarely get negative feedback about the ploughmans but i will make sure our Catering Manager sees this as we always strive to improve.
    Written February 21, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written August 22, 2023
  • Agnes P
    London, United Kingdom8 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Quirky but beautiful garden!
    Beautiful natural garden all throughout. Friendly staff and great coffee shop. This is our second time visiting this place and will definitely come back again. A great place to take visitors.
    Thank you for taking the time to leave us this review. We're pleased that you enjoyed your visit and look forward to welcoming you back.
    Written February 21, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written September 2, 2023
  • Keith C
    Crew Green, United Kingdom58 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Pleasant staff and surroundings
    Review of just the Loggia Cafe. Great choice, including vegan options for me. Cakes were great and very generous salad and ploughman portions. There seemed to be a good number of staff and they treated us in a friendly and helpful way showing us the meals on offer. The food was well presented and ample amounts. The coffee was quite acceptable. Price wise, it's what you'd expect but not too bad given the good service.
    Thank you very much for your review of the Loggia Cafe, it means a lot to the team to receive this positive feedback. We're pleased that you found the offering was good and service great too.
    Written February 21, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written September 16, 2023
  • Julie P
    1,916 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Somewhere I'd love to return to at a different time of day & different season
    We got here mid- late afternoon, so the heat of the day had passed, but it was still sunny enough to appreciate the garden. We entered the house first, which is small but cosy, and feels lived in. Part of it is used for student visitors so isn't open. There are "rooms" to the gardens, so you can wander around different planting schemes. It's not big, but it was full of colour. As a gardening school for pupils from across the world, it has a reputation to maintain. We sadly didn't find the cafe, as we wanted a drink, but it seems it's back outside near the oast houses and car park and it was near closing time. Consequently we didn't find the shop either. There are toilets in the car park.
    Thank you for your review. We're pleased that you enjoyed your visit to the garden and house. We do educate Horticultural students from all over the world, what a place to learn! The cafe, shop and nursery are situated in the same area, beyond the Topiary Lawn.
    Written February 21, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written October 4, 2023
  • brighouse55
    89 contributions
    3.0 of 5 bubbles
    Not for us I am afriad
    Why didn't I like Great Dixter? More importantly why didn't Mrs B like the Dixter? Well, it could well be that April, particularly the April we had is not a good time to visit the garden. But after saying that this was the third garden in three days and the one we liked least. Mrs B didn't like it because she felt it was overstuffed with plants (which was Mr Lloyd's way I think), not as well kept as she expected (it isn't an NT garden) and she didn't like the constant repeating of the same plants in each garden area (again a lloyd way I think). I didn't like it because I felt it lacked "good bones" I like a bit more structure than this and we didn't get the delightful colour palette I expected (again an April thing?).And it isn't as big as I thought. What I really disliked was the overwhelming feeling that I had stumbled into a cult for Mr Lloyd and his high priest Fergus who were pontificating that this is the way to garden when it isn't. It might be the way they garden but I couldn't afford to garden like that, neither money nor time. I usually come away from every garden with an idea or a plant to try - nothing stood out from this one. Except the delightful cafe which served very reasonably priced and excellent quality food. We wouldn't return. Ever.
    Dear brighouse55. Thanks for your review. Gardens are very subjective, I think it would be fair to say that we're not your cup of tea. We certainly aren't for everyone which is perfectly fine. I think that's the crux of it really, we're not the garden for you. We wish you all the best. Emma, Operations Manager.
    Written May 24, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited April 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written May 12, 2024
  • John H
    Chelmsford, United Kingdom21 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    One of our favourite gardens to visit!
    We have lost count of the number of visits that we have made to Great Dixter and went again a week ago. As always, it didn’t disappoint, full of plants & colour, no room for weeds! Fergus Garrett and his team do a marvellous job in preserving and maintaining such a lovely garden for future generations to enjoy and of course, we will return.
    Thank you for taking the time to leave us this review. We're very pleased that you enjoy your numerous visits to Great Dixter and look forward to welcoming you back again soon.
    Written May 30, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written May 17, 2024
  • ScotinEngland
    St Anne, United Kingdom2,076 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A 5 star visit garden and experience
    An amazing day spent visiting this OUTSTANDING Gardens and Tudor buildings. What a varied set of garden spaces from tropical themes to sunken gardens to very full herbaceous borders to huge swathes of wildflower meadows and topiary sections to orchards. The list goes on and on. The house of three huge rooms on display were stewarded by knowledgeable guides who happily filled in the historic background. One of the best gardens we’ve ever visited. HEARTILY RECOMMENDED.
    Thank you very much for leaving such a detailed review, and are delighted you had such a wonderful time here at Great Dixter. We hope you will be able to visit us again soon.
    Written June 18, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited June 2024
    Travelled with friends
    Written June 2, 2024
  • SheMag
    Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom242 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Even better than I hoped
    When I took up gardening about ten years ago now, Great Dixter cropped up a lot in conversations with gardeners, so I’ve always wanted to go. What a fantastic afternoon I had. I’m still only a keen amateur but I’ve gone through my bulbs in pots stage, to bulbs in the ground, to playing it safe with rhododendrons, and I’ve hit the stage of wanting plants which are different, and which won’t mind difficult conditions. What has this got to do with Great Dixter, I hear you ask. Well, it’s simply heaven for giving you ideas. The staff are so helpful, the shop seems to sell every plant going, and even the plant labels give information; preferred growing conditions, whether they are pollinators etc. I had the most wonderful time. Then, on top of all the outside stuff, was the house itself, which no one had told me about so came as a great surprise; a wonderful barn of a main hall and half open for tours while the other half houses student gardeners. Beautiful. I now have a garden stuffed with new plants such as euphorbias which will serve as a memento of my visit for a long time. Loved it.
    What a lovely review, thank you very much. We hope you are able to visit again soon.
    Written June 18, 2024
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled solo
    Written June 8, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles707 reviews
Excellent
396
Very good
162
Average
84
Poor
39
Terrible
26

Martin C
Crewe, UK124 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2024 • Couples
Smaller than we had expected with far too much 'rewilding'. Ornamental gardens pleasant but we have seen a lot better elsewhere. Very few plants were labelled, making it hard to get planting ideas. Vegetable garden very poor.

Nursery was pretty good and prices reasonable.

Overall, like many places, I suspect they are somewhat trading on their reputation.
Written July 9, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We're sorry that you didn't enjoy your visit. Gardens are subjective, we are unlike most other gardens though we are pleased that gardens are thinking more about biodiversity when managing their gardens. We don't have labels in the borders mainly as there are so many layers of planting, it would be a sea of labels! I will pass your feedback on to our Head Gardener. All the best, Emma, Operations Manager.
Written July 12, 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

UK-EastAngle
Cambridge, UK152 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Couples
Clearly, it's a famous and beautiful garden, but it is managed in a way that is inappropriate for the huge numbers of visitors.

As other have remarked, the paths are incredibly narrow, often with the foliage spilling out into them and making them even narrower.

This is great for the cottage garden look, but it is a challenge passing others if you are elderly (as the majority of visitors seem to be) or in any way infirm. In addition, one of the yew hedge gaps near the house is so low and dark that I banged my head quite badly on a branch inside.

Lovely garden, great rewilding in places - but the paths are just too crowded and narrow.
Written June 30, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jane F
5 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Friends
Visiting Great Dixter in 2015 and 2016 made a profound impression on me. The garden was vibrant full of colour with a definite structure to it. I had never seen such a beautiful striking garden before. Having just visited the garden a few days ago I found it had changed completely. It is more flowing less vibrant colours are present and has a meadow natural feel to it. I fear it has lost somewhat the presence of Christopher Lloyd in the garden.
Written June 29, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Caroline H
6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Couples
Wow…my partner and I were bowled over by Great Dixter House & Gardens! The gardens are fabulous; packed with an immense range of plants, from the tiny little creeping plants filling the gaps between flags, to huge tropical ones, and so many in between. One of the best things, for us, is that the gardens are not ‘manicured’ and neat, they’re full, abundant and bounteous, brimming with life…plants, birds, insects…wonderful. We had no idea, before we arrived, that Christopher Lloyd was so passionate about biodiversity, and this is the fantastic result.

Every single member of staff we spoke with was friendly and helpful, whether it was answering questions about plants and wildlife, the history of the house, or the delicious food in the café.

We spent the whole day there (yesterday) and, if only we lived closer, would definitely invest in the Friend membership scheme.

Thank you so much for continuing Christopher Lloyd’s legacy…long may it continue.
Written June 14, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for taking the time to leave such a lovely review, we are glad you had such a wonderful experience. Perhaps you will be able to visit again if you are nearby.
Written June 18, 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Rachel C
Chatham, UK2 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Business
So disappointing. Certain plants have overtaken the borders and anything unusual has been suffocated. I know we're all supposed to love GD and call it magical, but it is so far away from its original core that it just hurts to see it like this. I visited many years ago and it was the best garden ever, but it seems things have just gone downhill since, yet we all should love what is happening here for some reason. Certainly not the best garden in the Southeast anymore. The natural look is used as an excuse to just not do much at all. May as well shut the gates and say it's a rewilding project. Won't be paying to go in again until the management of this garden has changed.
Written June 9, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
I am sorry that you found your visit disappointing. I will pass your feedback on to our Head Gardener but I can assure you that the garden is far from neglected. We have a very hardworking team, the garden is highly managed but we do take a softer approach than other gardens. We always consider our garden practises to make sure that we consider the benefits to wildlife as well as reviewing new and older planting schemes as a team, taking in different views and desires, this is an essential part of the garden training we deliver particularly for our scholars. As you'll see from other reviews, there are many who adore the gardens as they are, we all have our own preferences. We wish you all the best.
Written June 18, 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

SheMag
Newcastle upon Tyne, UK242 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Solo
When I took up gardening about ten years ago now, Great Dixter cropped up a lot in conversations with gardeners, so I’ve always wanted to go. What a fantastic afternoon I had. I’m still only a keen amateur but I’ve gone through my bulbs in pots stage, to bulbs in the ground, to playing it safe with rhododendrons, and I’ve hit the stage of wanting plants which are different, and which won’t mind difficult conditions. What has this got to do with Great Dixter, I hear you ask. Well, it’s simply heaven for giving you ideas. The staff are so helpful, the shop seems to sell every plant going, and even the plant labels give information; preferred growing conditions, whether they are pollinators etc. I had the most wonderful time. Then, on top of all the outside stuff, was the house itself, which no one had told me about so came as a great surprise; a wonderful barn of a main hall and half open for tours while the other half houses student gardeners. Beautiful. I now have a garden stuffed with new plants such as euphorbias which will serve as a memento of my visit for a long time. Loved it.
Written June 8, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
What a lovely review, thank you very much. We hope you are able to visit again soon.
Written June 18, 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

ScotinEngland
St Anne, UK2,076 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Friends
An amazing day spent visiting this OUTSTANDING Gardens and Tudor buildings. What a varied set of garden spaces from tropical themes to sunken gardens to very full herbaceous borders to huge swathes of wildflower meadows and topiary sections to orchards. The list goes on and on. The house of three huge rooms on display were stewarded by knowledgeable guides who happily filled in the historic background. One of the best gardens we’ve ever visited. HEARTILY RECOMMENDED.
Written June 2, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you very much for leaving such a detailed review, and are delighted you had such a wonderful time here at Great Dixter. We hope you will be able to visit us again soon.
Written June 18, 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

John H
Chelmsford, UK21 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Couples
We have lost count of the number of visits that we have made to Great Dixter and went again a week ago. As always, it didn’t disappoint, full of plants & colour, no room for weeds! Fergus Garrett and his team do a marvellous job in preserving and maintaining such a lovely garden for future generations to enjoy and of course, we will return.
Written May 17, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for taking the time to leave us this review. We're very pleased that you enjoy your numerous visits to Great Dixter and look forward to welcoming you back again soon.
Written May 30, 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Filllua
London, UK226 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Friends
one of the most beautiful gardens in the UK ,and with an excellent little cafe serving lovely sandwiches & top coffee.
a total gem.
Written May 12, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you very much for your kind review of Great Dixter, I am so glad you had such a pleasant day and we hope you will be able to visit again soon. The Loggia Cafe will be delighted with your comments too.
Written May 13, 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

brighouse55
London89 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Couples
Why didn't I like Great Dixter? More importantly why didn't Mrs B like the Dixter? Well, it could well be that April, particularly the April we had is not a good time to visit the garden. But after saying that this was the third garden in three days and the one we liked least. Mrs B didn't like it because she felt it was overstuffed with plants (which was Mr Lloyd's way I think), not as well kept as she expected (it isn't an NT garden) and she didn't like the constant repeating of the same plants in each garden area (again a lloyd way I think). I didn't like it because I felt it lacked "good bones" I like a bit more structure than this and we didn't get the delightful colour palette I expected (again an April thing?).And it isn't as big as I thought. What I really disliked was the overwhelming feeling that I had stumbled into a cult for Mr Lloyd and his high priest Fergus who were pontificating that this is the way to garden when it isn't. It might be the way they garden but I couldn't afford to garden like that, neither money nor time. I usually come away from every garden with an idea or a plant to try - nothing stood out from this one. Except the delightful cafe which served very reasonably priced and excellent quality food. We wouldn't return. Ever.
Written May 12, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear brighouse55. Thanks for your review. Gardens are very subjective, I think it would be fair to say that we're not your cup of tea. We certainly aren't for everyone which is perfectly fine. I think that's the crux of it really, we're not the garden for you. We wish you all the best. Emma, Operations Manager.
Written May 24, 2024
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Great Dixter House & Gardens - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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