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Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, Gloucestershire

Discover Britain's most terrific trees, beautiful blooms and superb shrubbery

Posted: 26 July 2011
by Fiona McKim

Standing proud in a sprawling 600 acre site, Westonbirt Arboretum is home to one of the worlds finest collections of trees and shrubs, or as we like to think of them, V.I.T’s (very important trees)

Many rare and exotic species from every corner of the globe await discovery within the lush 17 miles of picturesque landscape here, including 82 champion trees, the tallest of their kind in the country.

Star attractions The changing seasons highlight the trees as the star attraction here and the summer months are an ideal time to enjoy their natural beauty. Throughout July and august the air is heavy with the scent of lime trees and with the low drone of bees gathering nectar from this rich supply. Later, as the vitality of the summer season gives way to the rusty palate of autumn an array of red, oranges and yellows cover the landscape. Keep a keen eye out for some of the first trees to fade away and you may observe the vibrant princess pink of the Chinese spindle changing into a handsome red hue.

Family X-Factor The chance to wander through lush forestry discovering new, exciting environments will appeal to the young and adventurous amongst your family. Pick up a Naturally Playful trail map and explore the children's trail around the arboretum and look out for special play areas where children can climb, build dens and clamber over fallen logs.

Not many people know this, but… Westonbirt may describe itself as a rare and important tree collection, but you won't find any 'keep off the grass' signs here! The Forestry Commission encourage visitors to explore off the paths and amongst the trees.

Special Events Visit the arboretum from July 23–August 31 and children can enter free of charge, plus the learning team will be holding craft and trail events throughout the school holidays
Cost Varies depending on the season, £6–9 (adults) £5–8 (concessions) £2–4 (children)

Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, North Tetbury, Gloucestershire, GL8 8QS.

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Days out, activities, summer holiday, children events, arboretum, tree, flowers, nature, wild, enviroment, workshops, family events, champion trees, rare tree, exotic plants, flowers

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