Flower Escapes in the UK and Beyond

Walking through bluebell woods near Coniston | John Millen
Walking through bluebell woods near Coniston | John Millen

Do you love being surrounded by flowers in bloom? Whether you’re thinking of a spring getaway to the English countryside or a trip to Europe later in the summer, we have a number of trips departing in the next few months that will allow you to experience nature in all its glory.

From bluebells and daffodils to orchids and edelweiss, this is where you need to head to enjoy nature’s beautiful spectacle of colours…


                                          
DAFFODILS IN NORTH YORKSHIRE | BEST TIME: MARCH-APRIL

Daffodils may be typically associated with the English countryside but for the genuine wild variety (two-tone yellow flowers, narrow trumpets and forward pointing petals) head to North Yorkshire to walk the Cleveland Way. The daffodils at Farndale Valley are reputed to have been planted by the monks of the nearby Rievaulx Abbey and there is even a dedicated mile-long ‘daffodil walk’!

Find out more about the Cleveland Way

Spectacular yellow golden Daffodils |  <i>Michele Eckersley</i>

Rievaulx Abbey, near Helmsley |  <i>John Millen</i>

 

BLUEBELLS IN THE COTSWOLDS | BEST TIME: APRIL-MAY

The Cotswolds are on the finest regions to enjoy these quintessentially English carpets of blue. The Cotswolds landscape features a range of gentle hills extending northeast of the city of Bath through Cheltenham to Stratford-on-Avon, Shakespeare’s birthplace. Along the way you’ll encounter villages lined with stone-built houses and unspoilt woodland, often covered with bluebells during the spring months .


Find out more about walking in the Cotswolds

Bluebells and the pikes, Great Langdale |  <i>John Millen</i>

Cycling into Guiting Power |  <i>John Millen</i>

LAVENDER IN PROVENCE | BEST TIME: JUNE-AUGUST

With colours varying from violet to indigo and everything in between, the lavender fields of Provence are guaranteed to take your breath away and awaken all your senses. The heady scent of lavender is strongest in the height of summer, when the fine stalks wave in the wind, with prairies in bloom stretching as far as the eye can see. 

Discover our Rambling in the Luberon trip

Lavender box, Les Baux, Provence |  <i>Rachel Imber</i>

Lavender fields by a Cistercian abbey in Provence |  <i>Emmanuel Valentin</i>


                                                    
SUNFLOWERS IN TUSCANY | BEST TIME: JULY-AUGUST

It’s hard not to fall in love with sunflowers: they give a sense of happiness, like a sun shining on a beautiful summer’s day. Sunflowers in bloom are a striking sight and in Tuscany they are an icon of the region. Follow the backroads in the warm summer months and spot the sun-loving ‘girasoli’ among cypresses, vineyards and traditional Tuscan architecture.

Find out more about walking in Tuscan hilltop towns and villages

Riding near Volterra, Italy |  <i>Brook Martin</i>

Bagno Vignoni

 

EDELWEISS IN THE ALPS | BEST TIME: JULY-SEPTEMBER

The national flower of Switzerland, edelweiss takes its name from the German words ‘edel’ (noble) and ‘weiß’ (white). It is probably Europe’s best known mountain flower, mostly seen between the months of July to September. It grows in rocky limestone places and its scarce, often short-lived bloom can be found in remote mountain areas of the Alps. There plenty of other wild flowers that adorn the meadows of the Swiss Alps throughout the summer.

Find out more about walking in Switzerland

Edelweiss in the Dolomites

Stunning views across alpine meadows |  <i>Jon Millen</i>

 

ORCHIDS IN MADEIRA | BEST TIME: YEAR ROUND

Rising steeply from the Atlantic Ocean, Madeira’s subtropical climate and rich volcanic soil make for perfect growing conditions and orchids here enjoy an impressive year-round flowering season. There is a dedicated Orchid Garden with more than 7,500 species, while a week-long Flower Festival takes place every spring. 2022 the festival takes place from 5 - 29 May.

Find out more about walking in Madeira

Hiking in the Pico Ruivo, Madeira, Portugal

Spring Walking, Italy, Tuscany, Portugal, Madeira, Self Guided Walking, United Kingdom, Cleveland Way

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