Forde Abbey & Gardens

Forde Abbey & Gardens, Chard: Hours, Address, Forde Abbey & Gardens Reviews: 4.5/5

Forde Abbey & Gardens
4.5
Historic Sites • Gardens
10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Thirty acres of beautiful gardens, surrounding one of the oldest inhabited houses in England that is open to the public, features a rockery, bog garden, arboretum and millions of spring bulbs.
Suggested duration
2-3 hours
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4.5
725 reviews
Excellent
440
Very good
199
Average
44
Poor
20
Terrible
22

richard t
7 contributions
Looking tired
Jul. 2021
Visited with friends for a day. the gardens are looking tired and need care and attention. there are clearly not sufficient gardens for upkeep.
The Arboretum has NO annotated trees, which one would expect from a location that professes to be an "Arboretum". Nothing remarkable, wouldn't bother to go again
Written July 21, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

DebBell
Oxford, UK16 contributions
Beautiful location
Jul. 2021
Lovely place to visit, enjoy beautiful gardens, gorgeous house, plants and nearby pick your own. Well worth a visit
Written July 18, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Fred A
Hertfordshire UK275 contributions
Well worth a visit
Jul. 2021
In looking for a place that was dog friendly, we came across this delightful place. We went on a Monday when the abbey was closed so only the gardens were available to view - but what gardens! Spectacular different types of organised gardens, wildflower meadows, + two or three idyllic lakes to sit and wile away some time. Both the abbey and the gardens are very photogenic and there are so many different paths to wander, it was not a problem that the dog had to be kept on lead. There was access to the small chapel and a nice pottery to view. As others have said, the caf, was disappointing - situated in a beautiful old abbey building, we had coffee and cake soon after opening and very little time to wait, but the coffee was very uninspiring, lacking taste and the cake was a bit boring. But overall, a great find and we spent way longer than we expected there - there is also a really good plant shop. Highly recommended
Written July 18, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

ZagZigg
Sompting, UK11 contributions
Missed opportunity
Jun. 2021 • Family
My wife and I visited in July this year with our 18 year old son. The welcome from the lady on the till was great, the gardens and the house were all lovely and the huge fountain was stunning.
It rained a little but that didn’t really affect the day until we decided to stop for lunch.
What a disappointment. The coffee shop had very little on offer, more like a cheap little snack shop you’d find near a bus station than the sort of eatery you’d expect in a fine house like this.
They could do so much more. A real missed opportunity. I ended up with a ghastly microwaved sausage roll and a packet if crisps.
Where is the Cream tea option, the ploughman’s, a bit of local beer.
The entry price was reasonable, and it was good value but they really are missing a trick, we would have spent twice as much on lunch as we did on tickets if anything decent had been on offer!
Written July 18, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Dave A
Honiton, UK410 contributions
Hidden Gem - worth the effort to locate
Jun. 2021
Spent a good half day here. Worth the effort to get to but care, "Brown" signs are not that obvious so keep an eye out.
Tickets can be bought online with provides a modest discount though will still need to queue to "check in" Worth the little extra £1.50 to upgrade from Gardens only to include the House.
On the site of a former abbey dissolved by Henry XIII and was abandoned for 100+ years before the current property rebuilt on the site.
Gardens are definitely the high point and easy to walk around the majority.
People with accessibility issues will be slightly restricted but not a deal breaker.
Property boasts the "highest pump fountain" and timings are given for when it's powered up, normally 3X daily. Water reaches 100ft plus so make sure you're upwind if it's breezy!
There is a small cafe doing cake and coffee in the courtyard, and also a small garden shop to buy locally grown flora. Prices VERY reasonable - £4.50 for a Penstemmon that's established itself already.
Written July 14, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

GORDON S
Liskeard, UK21 contributions
3 Day break.
Jul. 2021
The Abbey itself was a revelation as to what life was like for the monks, sooner them than me.
The gardens were worth a visit on their own, beautiful flower beds with many plants I had never seen before and laid out to lead you from one bed to another, and the rest of the grounds were a delight to stroll around, such magnificent trees!
We booked into a B&B in Chard for three nights just to go to Forde Abbey and it was well worth it.
Written July 11, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

P_n_R_Herts
Herts114 contributions
Lovely house and gardens, more info please!
Jun. 2021
Intriguing conversion from abbey to mansion. It is disappointing that there is not more information in the house about what remains of the original building and what has been converted (no doubt they want you to buy the guide book!), but the staff are friendly and probably able to answer questions. The grounds are very manageable in terms of size, and when we visited in mid-June there were a lot of plants in flower. No space to picnic though. Very hard to locate! Allow plenty of time to get there: the signposting takes you a very circuitous route and following the map takes you down incredibly narrow lanes – the choice is yours!
Written July 11, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

cr8ted2praze
Bristol44 contributions
What a delight!
Jun. 2021
Attended this jewel on one of the sunniest days of the year so far. The gardens and house are amazing and I managed to see the fountain as it reached the clouds! The only issue was in the cafe, where the service was unfortunately slow and expensive, and one of the staff members who may never have seen someone who looked like me before, who I spotted staring at me behind a pillar as I waited patiently to pay for my coffee and slice of cake. Of course when she realised I spotted her it was instant plastic smiles : )) Other than that example of ignorance, special mentions go to the reception staff who were exceptionally friendly and accepting, the lady at the house entry and the lady who showed me and my friend one of the interesting features in one of the rooms in the abbey. Usually I get names, but I hope that this positive feedback will be shared with those who deserve it.

Great visit and absolutely recommended.
Written July 9, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

MCgbell
195 contributions
Beautiful tranquil place
Jul. 2021 • Couples
Fabulous walk gorgeous flowers ,vegetables and delightful water features.
The bog area was my favourite and the water fountain was impressive. I didn't go in the house. Plenty of areas to sit down. A little hilly for people with disabilities but still alot to see on the level.
Written July 6, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Alison S
2 contributions
Beautiful house and gardens
Jun. 2021 • Couples
Stunningly beautiful house and gardens but disappointed by information available inside house. Laminated information sheets were available on a single stand in some rooms but impossible for more than one person to read at a time and really not a good idea for social distancing. Also recommend taking your own picnic lunch as Cafe only sells soup, sausage rolls and cakes although the scone, jam and cream I had was lovely.
Written July 1, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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