Enter through a rather inconspicuous gate from the world-famous Long Walk and discover a world rarely explored by the general public. Frogmore Estate for me definitely deserves to be crowned one of the UK’s most beautiful ‘secret gardens’.

The estate where Frogmore House is located has been in Royal hands since the 16th century. A house was first built between 1680 and 1684, and has had many different roles since its construction (as well as being modified many times) – some of its roles have included being a home to crown tenants and a country retreat for royalty.

Nowadays it is best known for being the resting place for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert –  and while the main house is no longer a royal residence, it is still used for events and entertaining.

The house may be steeped in history, but for me the gardens are the main attraction and are more than worthy of a visit.

Commissioned in 1792 by Queen Charlotte, this beautiful garden is set in around 30 acres, and there is an abundance of spring and summer blooms, flowering meadows, redwood trees, ornate flowers and summer houses dotted around the estate.

Exploring the landscaped garden feels like you’ve stepped back in time.

I arrived on a beautifully sunny afternoon. The stunning lawn in front of Frogmore House leads to a picturesque lake and there’s a gothic ruin that Queen Victoria used as a breakfast and reading room – don’t forget to check out the beautiful ivy-clad bridge that you have to cross to get there, and sit on the quaint wooden jetty opposite.

It’s very easy to lose an hour or two meandering around these beautiful gardens, and while you can’t go into the Mausoleum, there are plenty of other areas that are worth checking out – including the Royal Burial Ground, where members of the Royal family are buried in the shade of a large tree.

Giant redwoods dominate in parts of the garden, and the view from the end of the lake back on the house is truly breathtaking. The stunning white building really stands out amongst all the plants and trees, and there are some beautiful hidden buildings (including a cute tea room hidden away  - make sure to find it if you visit).

It really feels like you’re walking around something rather special and personal. The attention to detail is second to none, and with so much to explore there are times when you will feel like you have the whole estate to yourself.

There are just 3 days charity open days a year, so keep your eyes peeled for the June 2018 dates to be announced soon.

Fancy exploring another Royal garden usually closed off to the general public?

Windsor Castle’s ornate moat garden sits at the foot of the round tower and is the private area belonging to the Castle Governor, whose residence is in the Norman Tower.

There are two sections of the garden – the upper, and lower. The upper covers the slope of the Round Tower, with a stunning little terrace and pathway.

The lower contains a beautifully maintained lawn and rock garden and has a very quaint English feel about it.

Usually only visible looking down into the moat from the Middle Ward, this little slice of garden perfection is only open on certain days in August. Combine it with a trip up the Round Tower for a fabulous behind the scenes look around the castle.

Related

Frogmore House
Historic House / Palace
Frogmore House – photographer: Philip Craven, Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

Set amidst the extensive Home Park of Windsor Castle, Frogmore House is surrounded by fine and picturesque gardens.

Windsor Castle
Castle / Fort
Windsor Castle's Round Tower (daytime) – photographer: John Freeman, Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2018

Windsor Castle is the oldest and largest inhabited castle in the world and The Queen's favourite weekend home. Entry to St George's Chapel is also included (except on Sundays when the chapel is closed to visitors but open to worshippers).

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