Tapeley Park and Gardens

Tapeley Park and Gardens, Westleigh, Devon, England

Tapeley Park Gardens are located near the village of Instow in North Devon. Located on the estate are a unique set of gardens which reflect both the grand designs of the Victorian era and the green vision of the present day custodian, Hector Christie.

The house is a private residence but its spacious grounds offer splendid coastal and countryside views and quiet spaces to enjoy nature. A QR code trail provides information about various plants as well as aspects of the estates historical features. Well behaved dogs are welcome and there is also a small childrens play area.

Tapeley is renowned for its sculpted Italian terraces which were landscaped in the 1800s, and given a redesign by the horticulturalist Mary Keen in the 1990s. Borders and flowerbeds are awash with colour from indigenous and non-native plants, which flourish in the gardens, coastal microclimate.

The flagship of Tapeleys sustainability ethos is the permaculture garden. One of the oldest in the UK, it is a thriving example of how gardens can work with nature. During the summer months it literally buzzes with bees and beneficial insects, thanks to the array of plant life.

Its QR trail allows visitors to identify exotic delights such as Chilean guava berry shrubs, domesticated Sea Buckthorn, Sichuan Peppers, Nashi pear and Siberian Kiwi fruit trees. The garden team will happily direct visitors to edible treats to sample, and host regular talk and taste tours during the summer months.

The old woodland which surrounds Tapeleys Hidden Lake, at the bottom of a tranquil ravine, is populated by oaks, beeches and fir trees, some of which are 150 years old, lending a magical quality to the nature trail which runs through it.

After a tour of the gardens, the Tapeley tearooms provide the perfect pit stop, selling hot and cold drinks and tasty snacks prepared using organic produce from the Tapeley gardens. During the summer months Tapeley has an outdoor theatre programme with performances ranging from Shakespeare to family shows (see Facebook for details of upcoming events).

2021 Covid-19 information:

Tapeley Park is covid prepared and has measures in place to protect personal safety. These include one way systems at customer entry points, increased cleaning schedules in WC and publically used areas, provision of hand sanitiser, social distancing guidelines. For this season, tea room service will be takeaway only.

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