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6 spectacular snowdrop walks in Essex

Nature is rolling out the white carpet! Wrap up warm and head outside to discover the best lovely and local snowdrop-spotting places in Essex.

It’s that time again. Get your layers on, grab your phone and head out to these local beauty spots to catch a glimpse (and Insta-worthy snap) of winter snowdrops in the next few weeks.

RHS Hyde Hall, Chelmsford

If you’re looking for a guaranteed sighting, then Hyde Hall is the place – there were 15,000 snowdrops planted in its 1.3-acre winter garden back in 2017. Spot them in large drifts on the rolling slopes then head to the hilltop café-cum-restaurant for a warm cuppa and slab of cake. There’s also a brilliant wooded play area for the kids and an epic garden centre shop for the ‘rents.

Markshall Estate, Coggeshall

Hot off the snowdrop press! This Muddy editor has just been informed by a Markshall insider that the best time to see snowdrops in their ‘full glory’ is from… this week! So, cancel your plans and hot foot it down to one of the estate’s popular Snowdrop Weekends. There are only two (this week and next), so get booking! Oh, and did we mention that there’s not one, but three different varieties of snowdrop on display? Happy hunting!

Hedingham Castle, Halstead

How about some nature with a side of Norman history? Hedingham Castle’s Snowdrop Walks (Sunday 6 and Sunday 24 April) also include entry to the fab fort, making it a great day out for all the fam. Pop into the Keep Café for a hearty bowl of soup or brave the chill and picnic alfresco. Brrrr.

Daws Hall, Braintree

This stunning, 25-acre nature reserve on the Essex/Suffolk border rarely fails to disappoint on the snowdrop front. Book tickets for one of the Snowdrop Sundays (running now until 20 Feb) to hunt down the brill blooms in the hilltop woodland. There’s also a treasure hunt and nature table to keep the kiddos entertained. The bad news? Dogs aren’t allowed, so you’ll have to leave the hound at home. Sorry, pups.

Gibberd Garden, Harlow

Boasting beautiful lawns, streams, sculptures and glades, this grade II listed garden is always a delight to visit, but its Snowdrop and Hellebores Days are especially, well, special. After scouting swathes of snowdrops, pop into the Barn Tearoom to refuel. Good to know: entry for under 5s is free. Runs 13 – 23 Feb (Sundays and Wednesdays).

Beth Chatto Gardens, Elmstead

For another guaranteed sighting, head to the award-winning Beth Chatto Gardens. Best known for its lauded gravel plantings, it also puts on a seriously stunning snowdrop show January – April. Super flower fan? Book tickets for Beth’s Beautiful Snowdrops guided tour – led by Garden Director, David Ward – to swat up on your snowdrop trivia. Then plan a dinner party and show off to all your other gardening-mad mates. Blooming brilliant.

Need more things to do? Check out our bumper guide of local things to do in February.

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