My most recent experiences of Compton Acres Gardens have been of friends’ weddings, where if I’m honest, the beauty of the Italian Garden went a bit fuzzy as I slipped into a prosecco induced coma, so I jumped at the chance to explore the rest of the 10 acres with the Bournemouth Bloggers thanks to Darren Northeast PR.
Speaking of weddings, our first stop was the Italian Villa, run completely separately from Compton Acres, but with use of the stunning Italian Gardens for guests to get drunk (ahem I mean sip prosecco) in. Ceremonies are held on the top floor with spectacular views, you then move down to the main floor for the wedding breakfast and then down another flight of stairs to party the night away.
We were then given the freedom to wander the gardens at leisure so I headed off with Even Angels Fall and Teatime with Ciara to the Italian Gardens to admire the villa from the outside. It’s one of the most picturesque sections of Compton Acres and we spent a while taking advantage of all the Instagram gold!
Next, we wondered through the Wooded Valley, high up amongst the trees.
We followed the winding path down to the Rock and Water Gardens, which were a maze of cute little steps, tunnels and bridges taking us over little streams and through some gorgeous floral displays. there were plenty of places to sit and take it all in, and also wheelchair accessible paths for those who don’t fancy steps and bridges.
The stream opened up into a pond with a gorgeous ballerina statue where I made a few new friends!
Halfway round we found a cafe tucked away behind a wall of colour, with fantastic views over Poole Harbour. Open 11am – 4pm, it’s the perfect place to stop for sandwiches, cake, a drink and of course a naughty scoop of Purbeck Ice Cream.
We wandered through the Heather Garden which although not in full bloom, was still very pretty – these guys looked like they were enjoying themselves anyway!
Our next stop was the cute little Memory Garden dedicated to the three children of Mr Beard, who first opened Compton Acres as a tourist attraction to the public in 1952.
We finished our tour in the Japanese Garden. It was colourful, tranquil, and possibly my favourite corner of Compton Acres. I loved the colours and the highlight was the red teahouse which looked amazing covered in wisteria.
Of course after all that walking we were in desperate need of refreshments so we enjoyed a cheeky cream tea in the cafe (cream first, then the jam – I’m not an animal). And then, to be honest, we enjoyed another one!
In my opinion, Compton Acres is overlooked on the ‘things to do in Poole list’, it’s a lovely place to spend a morning or afternoon and the cafe does a great choice of food including breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and even Sunday roast! Compton Acres is open all year round apart from Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day. Check out their website for more information.
Big thanks to Darren Northeast PR and Bournemouth Bloggers for having me. I’ll definitely be back!
Our entry to the gardens and cream tea were complimentary as part of our press visit, however all word and images are my own.