Where are the best places to see autumn colour in Surrey?
As we bid a fond farewell to summer, we can start looking forward to the changing landscape of autumn. As the days grow shorter, there’s nothing better than wrapping up and heading out to the countryside. Here you can enjoy the beautiful reds, golds and russets of autumn and the crispy crunch of leaves underfoot.
In Surrey, we are lucky enough to have a fantastic choice of places to enjoy the new season. As the UK’s most wooded county, there are endless opportunities to see a medley of autumn colours.
Here’s our top suggestions of the top places to find autumn colour in Surrey.
Basingstoke Canal, Frimley
One of the best places to see autumn colours in Surrey is alongside the Basingstoke Canal. This beautiful waterway flows for 31 miles from Greywell in Hampshire to Byfleet, where it joins the Wey Navigation.
Expect to see a palette of yellows, golds and russets on the trees that overhang the towpath. Also, look out for the beautiful boat houses and some spectacular reflections from the bridges.
Valley Gardens at Virginia Water Lake
Without doubt, one of the most spectacular places to see autumn colour in Surrey is at the Valley Gardens, by Virginia Water Lake. The gardens belong to the Crown Estate at Windsor Great Park and are maintained by a dedicated team of gardeners.
The Valley Gardens look amazing throughout the year but come into their own in spring and autumn.
In autumn, the Valley gardens are ablaze with colour, and you’ll see a riot of oranges, reds, and yellows. It’s the perfect time to explore the Punch Bowl and surrounding gardens.
Leith Hill, nr Dorking
For a true taste of autumn, head to Leith Hill near Coldharbour. Set within the Surrey Hills, an area of Outstanding National Beauty, Leith Hill is ideal for an autumn stroll. The idyllic woodland provides a canopy of leaves, ablaze with autumn colour and offers plenty of trails to explore.
After a hike through the woodland, climb up to Leith Hill Tower to enjoy panoramic views over Surrey.
Bushy Park, East Molesey
As the second largest of London’s Royal Parks, there’s plenty to explore at Bushy Park. The wonderful mixture of open parkland and woodland provides a stunning landscape to enjoy the autumn colours.
You can take a walk through the beautiful Waterhouse Woodland Gardens to see the waterways and wildlife. There’s also a large playground for children.
The bonus for nature lovers is seeing the deer rut in Bushy Park in the autumn months (September to November). Approximately 320 red and fallow deer roam freely across the park and in the rutting season you can see the bucks competing for the females.
Winkworth Arboretum, Godalming
Of course, I can’t write about autumn colour in Surrey without a mention of Winkworth Arboretum in Godalming.
Head along to this popular Surrey beauty spot to experience autumn in all its splendour. Although these National Trust gardens look stunning all year round, Winkworth Arboretum is famed for its vibrant autumn colour.
In autumn, you can enjoy a rich display of reds, oranges, and russets, from a wide collection of international trees. However, the cream of the crop at Winkworth has to be the brilliant red Japanese maples and acers. You can catch these in their full glory from mid-October.
Ramster Gardens, Chiddingfold
Luckily, in autumn Ramster Gardens re-opens its gardens for a limited time so visitors can enjoy the vibrant colours of this picturesque 25-acre woodland garden.
With an impressive tree collection from around the world, these Surrey gardens come ablaze with autumn colour in autumn. In particular, the Japanese influence of the gardens looks magnificent.
Click here for more information on a visit to Ramster Gardens
Hatchlands Park, East Clandon
With over 400-acres of parkland, Hatchlands Park is perfect for finding some great colours in Autumn. The long walk (2.8 miles) follows a trail around the edge of the park, through woodland and open parkland.
Alternatively, the Wix Wood walk will lead you through ancient woodland to the children’s adventure area. Afterwards, stop for a hot chocolate in the café and take a few minutes to visit the resident donkeys.
RHS Wisley Gardens, Woking
Finally, the last of our places to see autumn colour in Surrey is at RHS Wisley.
RHS Wisley always makes an enjoyable family day out, and autumn is no exception.
With such a variety of trees and plants, there’s plenty to explore and an array of autumn colour to enjoy.
As well as seeing the usual favourites like the Glasshouse and Rock Garden, head to the pinetum for stunning autumn colours. If you are visiting Wisley with children, check out the new playground, which they will love.
Where is your favourite place to find autumn colour in Surrey? We’d love to hear your comments below.
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