Our National Trust family membership has turned out to be great value over the last couple of years. I did worry that with only two local properties (Dyffryn Gardens and Tredegar House) we wouldn’t get our use out of it –but we most definitely do.
Much of this is down to the brilliant programme of activities at both properties, which always gives us something new to experience, especially during school holidays.
We headed to Dyffryn Gardens yesterday afternoon to take part in their Plant Hunter Expedition trail, which opened on Saturday 8th April and runs until Sunday 23rd April.
Our mission started at Base Camp, a white tent filled with explorers’ equipment, where we picked up a map. From there, we followed clues around the beautifully-kept gardens, pushed cargo down the long ponds with a huge oar, investigated in the field laboratory, added our trail markers to the rainbow-ribboned tree, and ended up at the victory tent where we played with a selection outdoor games.
It was a lovely way to re-explore the gardens. Little Miss E, my seven-year-old daughter, really impressed me with her map reading skills, while Little Man O, 5½ loved reading the information points around the trail, telling us about different explorers and their discoveries.
We have favourite trees we like to climb on and hills that you just can’t resist rolling down. Other favourites are the rocky area at the front of the house which we call Fairy Land, as well as the red-bricked arches in what we call The Secret Garden, at the bottom right
We didn’t make it into the botanical gardens on this visit, or even into the house, but if you’d like to know more about them, then you can read our previous review here.
My children were excited to see the huge posters for the Easter Cadbury Egg Hunt taking place from Good Friday until Easter Monday – so I’ve promised them we’ll either go here or to Tredegar House over the weekend. (It’s an additional £2 per trail on top of usual entry charges.)
Plant Hunter Expedition is open from 10am-6pm daily and runs until Sunday 23rd April. Adults £9.60, children £4.80, family £24. Gift aid prices. No extra charge for the trail.
Dyffryn Gardens, St Nicholas, Vale of Glamorgan, CF5 6SU
Disclaimer: We pay for our National Trust membership ourselves and Dyffryn Gardens did not know we would be writing this review.