Lullingstone Castle & The World Garden
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Closed until Mar 29, 2024

Lullingstone Castle & The World Garden

Lullingstone Castle & The World Garden
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Temporarily closedClosed until Mar 29, 2024
About
Temp closed The World Garden is now closed for the 2023 season. We re-open on the 30th of March 2024.
Duration: 2-3 hours
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  • Millie B
    London, United Kingdom49 contributions
    Lovely but poor communication between owner & National Garden Scheme
    Lovely property and World Gardens that are well worth a visit. Surpassed my expectations as there was some reviews on here about the garden not being well maintained. This wasn't the case when we visited, it was lovely. Lots in bloom, lots of variety, and very tidy. Although we still came away with a positive experience overall, have to say that it got off to a rather unpleasant start. We booked for the NGS open day, anyone that has used NGS before will be aware that properties are listed online with tickets available to purchase in advance. Which is what I always do when I visited NGS open days, and indeed what I did for our visit to Lullingstone Castle. I presented my online booking confirmation, as instructed by the booking ("This email is your ticket - please show it or a printed copy at the garden gate for entry") as is always the case, and I have done at plenty of other properties without any issues. I was met with confused looks and a rather firm 'We don't accept online bookings'. I had to insist that yes they do, because NGS does: I'd already paid for entry. After some back and forth, and the owner being quite adamant that we cannot book online, and asking to take our debit card details (which I obviously declined: I'd already paid £20 entry fee, I didn't want to be charged again) eventually they let us in. I think this was more the common sense decision of the staff member at the gate whilst the owner was still insistent that we can't book online. In general it was an uncomfortable exchange, so I wanted to flag to future NGS visitors: don't try and be organised by booking online, just save yourself the hassle and pay at the gate!
    We are pleased you enjoyed your garden visit and thank you for your valuable feedback on the online booking, we will look into it for future NGS events.
    Written July 25, 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited June 2023
    Written July 22, 2023
  • Heather C
    Greater London, United Kingdom7 contributions
    Funny, Informative and Beautiful
    Went for Plant Hunters event yesterday, it was brilliant! Tom Hart Dyke imparted a huge amount of information in easily digestible chunks, and was very funny. The whole place was beautiful, the staff very helpful and the concept of the World Garden is incredible, particularly when you hear about its origins, and very well executed. A lovely afternoon, will definitely be going back.
    Thank you Heather, so glad to hear you had an enjoyable visit for our Plant Hunters event. We look forward to welcoming you again very soon!
    Written August 30, 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written August 29, 2023
  • Kirsty P
    1 contribution
    Fantastic visit to an incredible garden in beautiful Kent
    We hadn’t heard of Lullingstone before, but what a place! Hidden gem in a stunning location. The world garden was unique with a glorious nursery at the back where you can buy unusual and interesting specimens. We stopped off at cafe in the garden for a late lunch - absolutely delicious. We will certainly be back to see inside the house and explore the wider garden walks.
    Thanks Kirsty for your wonderful feedback, so glad you enjoyed your visit. We hope see you again soon!
    Written September 18, 2023
    This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
    Visited September 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written September 3, 2023
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 wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
213 reviews
Excellent
111
Very good
60
Average
21
Poor
10
Terrible
11

Millie B
London, UK49 contributions
Jun 2023
Lovely property and World Gardens that are well worth a visit. Surpassed my expectations as there was some reviews on here about the garden not being well maintained. This wasn't the case when we visited, it was lovely. Lots in bloom, lots of variety, and very tidy.

Although we still came away with a positive experience overall, have to say that it got off to a rather unpleasant start. We booked for the NGS open day, anyone that has used NGS before will be aware that properties are listed online with tickets available to purchase in advance. Which is what I always do when I visited NGS open days, and indeed what I did for our visit to Lullingstone Castle.

I presented my online booking confirmation, as instructed by the booking ("This email is your ticket - please show it or a printed copy at the garden gate for entry") as is always the case, and I have done at plenty of other properties without any issues. I was met with confused looks and a rather firm 'We don't accept online bookings'. I had to insist that yes they do, because NGS does: I'd already paid for entry.

After some back and forth, and the owner being quite adamant that we cannot book online, and asking to take our debit card details (which I obviously declined: I'd already paid £20 entry fee, I didn't want to be charged again) eventually they let us in. I think this was more the common sense decision of the staff member at the gate whilst the owner was still insistent that we can't book online.

In general it was an uncomfortable exchange, so I wanted to flag to future NGS visitors: don't try and be organised by booking online, just save yourself the hassle and pay at the gate!
Written July 22, 2023
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 are pleased you enjoyed your garden visit and thank you for your valuable feedback on the online booking, we will look into it for future NGS events.
Written July 25, 2023
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Purdy12345
Canterbury, UK34 contributions
May 2021 • Couples
A really interesting place, Tom’s enthusiasm is contagious he is very knowledgeable. The world garden is a real testament to his brave passion for plants. It rained hard but it really didn’t matter, the roses smelt amazing everywhere was lush and green I would definitely recommend a visit to such a beautiful setting. Emma does great coffee too
Written June 18, 2021
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 a review and we are glad to hear you enjoyed your visit. See you again soon!
Written June 24, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

jay1410
London, UK14 contributions
Oct 2020 • Family
We went on a cloudy day at the end of Oct during Covid. We chose it because we were looking for somewhere to meet my father in law who is old, frail and wheelchair bound. Because of covid, we could only meet outdoors. The main house was closed. But the gardens are lovely and varied even in the greyness of autumn.

The world gardens has an amazing range of flora from around the world in a small well laid out area. Then there is the cactus house and the small “garden centre” where you can buy a few plants. We enjoyed them as did my father in law.

The lake and woodland is picturesque.

Cons:
1. it is not very wheelchair friendly. The paths in the gardens are laid with coarse gravel making them very difficult to push a wheelchair through. I imagine a pushchair might also be difficult to manoeuvre although probably manageable as it’s a lot lighter.

2. Badly sign-posted. There is massive signage for the lullingstone Roman villa but the castle and gardens are another half mile away with tiny hard to read signs.

3. At £9 per adult, it felt just a touch expensive although parking was free.
Written October 30, 2020
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 your kind words and feedback.
Written November 1, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Julie
70 contributions
Apr 2021 • Family

It was our first ever visit to The world Garden this morning. We were so looking forward to it we arrived early. There was a little hiccup with the card machines but this was all sorted out quickly, and Tom was there welcoming us all in his usual charismatic way. Track and trace all up and running well.

We were there for the Easter Event, which happened to be the opening day. On entry my daughter who’s seven was allowed to chose her pencil and we were given an information leaflet and a printed paper to pop down the letters we had to find around the grounds to complete the Easter challenge. All wonderfully printed and easy for our daughter Holly to read. The grounds themselves are just coming to life. Everything is manicured and colour is appearing everywhere. As we walked towards the moon gate I even spotted some dainty snake head fritillaries just showing themselves through the patches of grass.

The cafe marquee was open for take away only, and my mother in Law purchased some divine cake, but there was plenty of seating for us to sit and eat our picnic that we took.

At the end of our visit Holly got her Easter chocolate prize, I got some new plants and both myself and my mother in law purchased Tom books that he signed for us while we waited.

We left by the gate house and said goodbye to Toms mum who we had met when we arrived. A delightful friendly lady.
We all had a lovely few hours here and will definitely return in the next few months. The grounds are extensive. Wonderful for children to run around in and truly inspiring for us gardeners!

Highly recommend.
Written April 3, 2021
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 leaving such an informative and kind review. Tom, Sarah and all the volunteers have worked so hard over the winter, so it means a lot to have such great feedback. Hope to see you again soon!
Written April 9, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Latte Lover
5 contributions
Sep 2020 • Family
Visited today with my 11-year old son, he & I loved it.
I’ve been to South Africa & today I felt like I had returned to Cape Town’s Botanical Gardens. Wow! What can I say?! How has the owner managed to collect such a fantastic selection of plants??? And it’s not just for plant lovers.... There are sculptures, plant tunnels, glass houses, maze-like passages & woodland walks for the kids. The ice-creams are good too. Thank you for a lovely day. We’ll be returning soon with the rest of the family.
Written September 19, 2020
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.
So glad to hear you had a great family day out, Tom the curator will be delighted. Glad you enjoyed the Kentish ice cream too:) See you soon!
Written September 20, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

LShippo
Wokingham, UK49 contributions
Aug 2021 • Couples
We went to visit the World Gardens as there was a special tour with the son of the owner. Dressed in a costume of the first plant hunter he provided a superb tour, switching characters as we went around the gardens.

Other characters would magically appear and give their stories!

The gardens and poly tunnels were extremely beautiful, and Tom provided very good information on the plants and their origins.

I can imagine visiting at different times of the year to fully appreciate the variety of plants and trees that are planted there.

Thank you Tom for being such a wonderful host!
Written September 2, 2021
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 SO much for your kind words and I am so glad to hear you enjoyed our Plant Hunters event. We look forward to seeing you again soon!
Written September 3, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Pauline017
Longfield , Kent8 contributions
Aug 2020 • Couples
The world gardens are untidy and look un cared for. Plants were just laying on path and we got there as they opened for the day but no one had checked things before opening. Plants were gone over and nothing was coming through to replace them so looked very tired. Quite samey in some beds with repetitive plants.
Only stunning exhibit was the Mexican garden as was all cacti so didnt need same care or water. Path ways through beds were often over grown with very spikey plants so you couldnt appreciate or fully appreciate anything. Plants need moving for safety or close the path.
I did email them but they did not reply
The rest of grounds were nice but nothing special.
Not able to visit house due to covid but the main house from outside looks tired with rotten peeling paint on windows.
Lakes looks pretty but no pedalos so you cannot appreciate it from the water which is a shame as it looked lovely and like to of seen more if it.
Some unusual plants like castor oil plant in beds but none available to purchase in little nursery just run of the mill plants
Very un impressive over all.
Written August 14, 2020
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.
As family and volunteer run small attraction we do our very best to maintain the garden and are really pleased with how it looks. The extreme hot weather has been challenge in recent week, although Tom the curator has been up early watering the 2 acre site daily. Our small volunteer team has worked flat out during lockdown to ensure the garden looks its very best and we have so much positive feedback from the hundreds of visitors since we re-opened in early July. We pride ourselves on offering unusual plants, many unique to The World Garden and hope you may take time to visit again.
Written August 17, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Elizabeth H
8 contributions
Aug 2020 • Family
This was a surprise day out for my 7yr old son who loves cacti.he loved running through the woods and seeing the huge lake.house wasnt open due to covid but there was still plenty to see. He was constantly pointing things out in the world garden,I especially loved the black bamboo and pond bamboo,gorgeous.beautiful display of dahlias.the highlight was 'hot & spiky' cacti house.so many varieties to see. We purchased a few cacti and plants from the nursery too & met Tom Hart Dyke himself! Friendly staff and yummy homemade cakes too. For a lovely afternoon out and to see some unusual plants I definitely recommend lullingstone castle and world garden.we shall be visiting again next year when hopefully the events will be back on.
Written August 18, 2020
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 Elizabeth for sharing your kind feedback for our garden, we are delighted your family had a great day out and look forward to seeing you again in 2021!
Written August 18, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Ashleigh W
7 contributions
Aug 2020 • Couples
Amazing. Definitely recommend you go. V. Friendly and knowledgable about the history. I arrived at the rear entrance and the lady, Kay, who runs the booth for tickets saw me and decided to stop and say I could follow her to the main entrance, once we arrived, she had a 20 minute chat with us about the castle. The lady who owns the house was in the gift shop, she took the time to talk to me about the church, grounds and history. I will be returning post Covid to go into the house. I loved it.
Written August 30, 2020
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 your feedback and kind words about our staff, it's really appreciated. We hope to welcome you again in 2021!
Written September 3, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

machinmad
Yaxley, UK2,490 contributions
May 2022
Trust your sat nav as you squeeze down the dead-end road leading to the castle. The 15th century gatehouse is impressive. The castle itself is only open at weekends, shame, as it probably has lots of history to impart that we didn't get to see.

The walled World Garden contains many plant species from around the globe, collected in a bygone age. The orchid and succulent tents are colourful, informative and interesting.
Written May 30, 2022
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 your review, the manor house is open on event days and bank holidays so hopefully you will be able to make a return visit. So glad it was an enjoyable visit.
Written May 31, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Lullingstone Castle & The World Garden - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

Frequently Asked Questions about Lullingstone Castle & The World Garden

Lullingstone Castle & The World Garden is open:
  • Thu - Sun 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM