Durham offers acres of glorious gardens for groups to explore – from hidden gardens in the heart of the city to historic walled gardens and beautifully landscaped parks.

Durham City has many green spaces groups can enjoy, including Crook Hall and Gardens, a stunning medieval manor house surrounded by glorious themed gardens just a riverside stroll from the city centre, where visitors can also indulge in Crook Hall’s famous afternoon tea. And no matter what the season, Durham University Botanic Garden promises a memorable visit, with an ever-changing 18 acre oasis of mature woodland and gardens on the edge of the city.

In the Vale of Durham, groups can discover the hidden secrets of Pockerley Hall gardens at Beamish, The Living Museum of the North, and find out what life was like as a pit village gardener at this award-winning open-air museum. Or they can take a trip to Whitworth Hall, the former home of ‘Bonny Bobby Shafto’, with elegant gardens, picturesque deer park and ornamental lake.

Groups can also admire Bishop Auckland from above at the new Auckland Tower with its incredible viewing platform, with views of rolling countryside, the 200 acre deer park and medieval Auckland Castle – witnessing the exciting developments taking place across the town coming to life.

In the stunning landscapes of the Durham Dales are the tranquil gardens of The Bowes Museum. Groups can navigate the parkland or stroll through delightful landscaped gardens - originally designed by John and Josephine Bowes themselves.

At Raby Castle, one of the finest medieval castles in England, a visit to the traditional 18th Century ornamental Walled Gardens is a real gem for group travel. Surrounded by 200 acres of lush green parkland, look out for the Red and Fallow Deer that live wild amongst the castle grounds.

Groups will not be stuck for choice when it comes to rural accommodation across the county. Nestled amongst some of Durham’s most picturesque landscapes is the South Causey Inn, with grounds overlooking the Vale of Durham and gardens for groups to explore, where the family grows juniper berries for their home-distilled gin. And for unique group accommodation with a glorious garden theme, Ramside Hall’s new treehouse accommodation development will open in 2020.

Discover more garden-inspired group travel ideas and information on where to stay at www.discoverdurham.co.uk

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