Planning a visit
to The Beth Chatto Gardens
We find that the average visitor will stay four hours at the Gardens. Beth's is a garden for plant lovers and while it's not the biggest, at around 7 acres, it is beautiful. The focus is on Beth's mantra: 'Right plant for the right place'. A visit tends to include the Gardens, Nursery, Gift shop and often a stop off in the Tearoom or Gravel Garden Restaurant.
WE ARE CURRENTLY IN THE PROCESS OF RESURFACING THE DRIVE TO THE GARDENS AND ARE USING A TEMPORARY DRIVE WHILE THE WORK IS COMPLETED. PLEASE EXCUSE OUR APPEARANCE WHILE THIS WORK IS CARRIED OUT.
We are open every day of the year apart from two weeks over Christmas and New Year (closed from Monday 24th December through to 1st January inclusive)
1 Mar - 31 Oct: Mon-Sat 9-5pm, Sun 10-5pm.
1 Nov - 29 Feb: Mon-Sat 9-4pm, Sun 10-4pm.
November through to 22nd March: £4.50 per adult.
23rd March - 30th April & 1st - 31st October: £6.95 per adult.
May - September: £8.45 per adult.
November 2018 - March 2019: £4.50 per adult.
1 carer goes free with disabled badge holder.
Child admission: FREE (max 3 per paying adult) or £1.50 on special event days (eg Wildlife Fair, Widllife Trail, Great Easter Egg Hunt, Great Pumpkin Hunt).
Sorry, no concessions.
A Friend of the Garden membership (from just £25) allows you year-round access to the Gardens during opening hours.
Car parking is free with space for coaches and disabled drivers.
Assistance dogs only. We recommend leaving dogs at home as our car park is very open with no shaded areas.
RHS members enjoy free access to the gardens from November through to March.
Tearoom and Gravel Garden Restaurant. Please note, Lunches served up to 3pm in Summer and 2.30pm in Winter. Cakes & Light refreshments last orders at the Tearoom are 4.30pm in Summer, and 3.30pm in Winter.
Colchester Bus Station is to the east of Colchester in Osborne Street and Stanwell Street. From the High Street turn right down Queen Street opposite Colchester Castle, then bear right at the bottom of Queen Street into Osborne Street. The bus station is on the left. Number 76 First Bus (Colchester to Clacton via Essex University) leaves from here once an hour. Journey time: 30 minutes. There is a request stop just as you leave the village of Elmstead Market. From there, you should be able to see our brown Tourist sign. Cross the road (please note: it's very busy and on a bend). The Gardens are ¼ of a mile down the drive.
Colchester has two train stations, North Station and Colchester Town. Colchester Town station is in the centre of town and near the bus station. North Station is over a mile north of the town centre and would require another bus to reach the town centre but does have a taxi rank just outside if you would prefer to continue your journey by car. Regular trains to North Station run from London Liverpool Street, Ipswich, Clacton on Sea and Norwich. Trains to Colchester Town are less frequent and may require you to change at North Station. Journey time to Colchester Town from London Liverpool Street is approximately 90 minutes.
Why not pop in by bike, and enjoy a snack in our Tea Rooms. The Beth Chatto Gardens can be reached from several bicycles routes. The closest is a route published by Visit Essex and can be viewed here. Route 4 "Cultural Sites and Constable Country" is the map that has our location. The route takes you around some of the countryside encircling Colchester and is roughly ten miles long. We can be found in the bottom right hand side of the map marked as attraction 14. If you would like to hire a bike for your visit to the area, whether you are a resident or a holiday maker, bikes can be hired from The Outdoor Hire Centre including tandems, childrens bikes and bikes with picnic equipment!
There is a taxi rank outside North Station (please note not outside Colchester Town station) and one on Colchester High Street. Local taxi companies include:
- Five Sevens: 01206 577777
- Hawaii 5-0: 01206 543210
- Panther Cabs: 01206 525525
Please note we do not endorse these companies and cannot guarantee their cost or level of service. For your return journey staff in the shop will be happy to call a taxi company for you.