Snowdrops are popping up across the South West, bringing that first sign that spring isn’t a too-distant hope and will be returning soon enough. In many gardens that the National Trust care for, swathes of snowdrops can be seen; here’s a guide to the top spots perfect for exploring followed by warming treats in the cafés.

Did you know that bees love snowdrops? They're a vital source of nectar early in the year when not many other plants are in flower. By planting snowdrops, you'll be building on the eco-system this vital species calls home, so look out for snowdrops for sale in the shops as you explore, so you can take a bit of inspiration from your National Trust day out and help nature in the process. 

Cotehele, Cornwall

Open daily from dawn to dusk, Cotehele garden is a garden for all seasons. At this time of year snowdrops are in abundance. Although snowdrops flower all over Cotehele, you’ll find them en masse in the Upper Garden; under trees, in the borders and peeking through the black grass on the pond in contrast to the brilliantly coloured dogwood stems.

Dyrham Park, Gloucestershire

Dyrham Park is home to more than half a dozen types of snowdrop, all of which occur naturally – although they are helped along with annual snowdrop dividing sessions carried out by the garden team to encourage growth the following year. You can find them stealing the show in front of the house in January and in February, and there are more blooming in the nut walk in the garden and the terraces.

Kinever Valley, North Devon

This hidden wooded valley in North Devon is perfect for a snowdrop walk. There’s a route which begins in the village of Morthoe and leads through the countryside, taking in this snowdrop hotspot and ending up at a secret little cove by the sea.

Kingston Lacy, Dorset

Kingston Lacy is well known for its spectacular displays of over 40 varieties of snowdrop from late January to the end of February. The one-and-a-half-mile snowdrop walk passes through the Victorian fernery, meandering down the iconic Lime Avenue and on to Lady’s Walk. You can even join guided snowdrop walks on 12 and 26 February, where you can learn more about the different varieties and discover their long history at Kingston Lacy (£8, booking essential via

Killerton, Devon

Killerton’s historic landscape garden and estate is filled with pockets of cheery snowdrops. You can find them throughout the garden, near the chapel, in the parkland in front of the house, in Dane’s Wood and Ashclyst Forest. There are handy walking leaflets on arrival to help you find your way around. On Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 March, 11am-4pm, you can help to add to the display of snowdrops in the chapel grounds by planting memory snowdrops (£1 donation per bunch). 

Knightshayes, Devon

The Garden in the Wood at Knightshayes is a great place to see dainty snowdrops, as well as early flowering camellias and rhododendron. This part of the garden has been described as ‘like a sweet shop for any plant lover’ - a description which holds true at any time of year.

Lacock Abbey, Wiltshire

Image: Connor Shepard
With walking trails among the delicate scatterings of snowdrops in the Abbey's grounds, a day at Lacock is a great way to get out in nature. Lacock's woodland garden is at its best in winter and spring, before the leaf canopy of the trees block out the light to the bulbs and flowers. Soon enough, under the trees you'll find, alongside snowdrops, aconite’s, anemones, daffodils, snakeshead fritillaries and one of the best displays of crocus vernus in the country.

Newark Park, Gloucestershire 

image: Emma Western
Carpets of snowdrops can be found across the estate when Newark Park reopens from Saturday 1 February. The beautiful setting has views out over the Cotswold countryside waiting to be enjoyed while you’re on a snowdrop walk. 

Stourhead, Wiltshire

Brilliant white snowdrops can be found around the lake in this world-famous garden from February. With winding paths to follow and many shrubs lie dormant waiting for spring, you can clearly see the design of the garden created over 250 years ago.

Trelissick, Cornwall

Thanks to the mild maritime climate at Trelissick, early flowering rhododendrons and camellias bring colour to the garden from February onwards. The borders are already scattered with hellebores, cyclamen and snowdrops, and the river views are framed and silhouetted by the budding branches in the canopies.

Trengwainton, Cornwall

When this exotic Cornish garden re-opens from Sunday 9 February there will be a great display of snowdrops to see as you wander the winding paths. Many nestle at the base of the trees lining the Drive and Long Walk.