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Abbey Gardens



Tresco Map

Last Visited: 2012

Chilean Puya (Puya chilensis)
Chilean Puya
(Puya chilensis)

Tresco Abbey Gardens were started soon after Augustus Smith took a lease on the Isles of Scilly from the Duchy of Cornwall in 1834.

He started by planting a shelter belt of trees to protect the garden then, in conjunction with Sir William Hooker of Kew Gardens, he began the outstanding collection of plants we see today.

The Old Abbey
The Old Abbey

The gardens are laid out on what is basically a grid of paths up the side of a south facing hill; it is not a place to go if you are looking for inspiring garden design.

On the other hand, if you want to see fine outdoor specimens of plants that would normally be confined to hot-houses in this country, Tresco Abbey Gardens is the place for you.

The scant remains of the medieval Tresco Abbey, and the various works of art all add interest to the place, as does the Valhalla Museum of shipsʼ figureheads and other artefacts.

Itʼs not cheap though, nowhere on Tresco is. Unlike the other islands where, although things may cost more than on the mainland thatʼs just the way it is and you donʼt feel you are being ripped off, Tresco is very much geared up to remove as much money from its visitors as quickly as possible.

For opening times, admission prices, etc. please see the official web site, detailed below.