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Gardens of the UK and IRELAND


Jack Hobbs – Tour Escort  

Jack Hobbs has selected a range of gardens predominantly in the South-West of the UK, Wales and Ireland. The tour will start with the Chelsea show, still viewed as one of the most important on the UK calendar. It will include the famed Wisley Gardens in London. In all, it is planned to visit a further 10/12 gardens from the Eden Project in Cornwall to RHS Bridgewater at Manchester. 

Jack has been Manager of the Auckland Botanic Gardens since 1997 and President of the Royal NZ Institute of horticulture from 2001 until 2011. Apart from an obvious enthusiasm for plants and gardens, he plays tennis and loves to travel. He is also well known as a television presenter on gardening programmes and has written articles on plants and gardening. He has escorted tours to many countries including China, Canada, Vietnam, Borneo, Britain, Europe and South Africa and on the local scene to the Chatham Islands.

Your travel itinerary

Monday 19 May

Auckland – Singapore

Mid-afternoon departure on Singapore Airlines, change planes in Singapore

Tuesday 20 May


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On arrival at London we transfer to a central city hotel, an early morning check-in is included. Rest of the day free, welcome dinner this evening.

Wednesday 21 May

London Chelsea Flower Show

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The prestigious Royal Horticultural Society Chelsea Flower Show has become a must-see event, world famous for its stunning displays, vibrant colors and innovative designs, set in the grounds of London’s Royal Hospital Chelsea. 


Thursday 22 May

London – Wisley - Salisbury

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A short journey out of London there are 240 acres to explore at RHS Wisley in Surrey, including the new ¾ acre glasshouse representing desert, tropical and temperate climates.


Friday 23 May

Salisbury – Garden House- St Austell

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The Garden House’s 10 acres, described as “a plantsman’s paradise”, is located on the edge of Dartmoor National Park. From there continue south for a three night stay.      


Saturday 24 May

Eden Project

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Today is our opportunity to visit the Eden Project, an environmental complex containing the world’s largest greenhouse. It was built in a disused clay pit to study plant populations in a variety of environments. Afternoon free to relax.


Sunday 25 May

Lost Gardens of Heligan

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A short drive south to a garden with a difference. It is reowned for the “Jungle” and its two  figures “Gaints Head and Mud Maid”. Afterwards spend some time in the small nearby fishing village of Megavissey.


Monday 26 May

St Austell- RHS Rosemoor - Bath

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Today the drive is north to the 8 acres garden who New Zealander, Lady Anne Berry (then Palmer) created in 1959, and developed over a 30-year period. After the visit continue via Glastonbury, Street and Wells to a two night stay in Bath.


Tuesday 27 May

Bath - Stourhead - Bath

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A short journey south is Stourhead. This 1,072-hectare estate is a breathtaking 18th century landscape garden with lakeside walks, grottoes and classical temples. 

Wednesday 28 May

Bath- Llanover / Wales Botanical - Carmarthen

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Today the diverse two garden trip includes travelling along the Brecon Beacons of Wales via Newport and Abergavenny. One visit has the largest Glasshouse imaginable and the other a private family listed one garden.

Thursday 29 May

Carmarthen – Dyffryn Fernant - Ferry – Wexford (Ireland)

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 An afternoon ferry crossing to Ireland is preceeded with a visit to Dyffryn Fernant. For more than two decades, this garden has grown out of the ancient landscape. On arrival at Rosslare a transfer to overnight accommodation near Wexford. 

Friday 30 May

Wexford – Blarney Castle – Cork

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A day with a difference your chance to increase the gift of eloquence or “the gift of the gab” at Blarney Castle. The ritual attracts countless people, including world leaders and celebrities, keen to gain the ability to speak persuasively. 


Saturday 31 May

Garnish Islands

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Today’s 90km journey is to the south western corner of Ireland where with a short ferry ride you land on Garnish Island. Here, the Garnish Island gardens are an incredible patchwork of plants from around the world. The unique location of the island produces a microclimate which allows for exotic species to flourish.


Sunday 01 June

Cork- Birr Castle - Belvedere

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Travel north through the Irish countryside to Birr Castle which is one of the great gardens of Ireland. The 6th Earl started the great collection of magnolias, finding that, although the garden is mostly on limey soil, magnolias do indeed grow well here. Then continue to Belvedere.


Monday 02 June

Belvedere – Dublin

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Before travelling on to Dublin, a visit to Belvedere House Gardens & Park, set in a magnificent 160acre Lakeside estate. Many of the trees in the woodlands are well over 100 years old, with one Yew tree near the Icehouse reputed to be over 800 years old.

On arrival at the hotel enjoy a free afternoon. 

Tuesday 03 June

Kilmacurragh Botanical Gardens

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Today travel south to one of the Irish National Botanic Gardens  where Kilmacurragh Gardens have a rhododendron collection dating back over two centuries. Since the National Botanic Gardens took over management in 1996, this collection has only grown and now holds an impressive 180 species. 

Wednesday 04 June

Hunting Brook-Powerscourt

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Just south of Dublin there are two gardens to visit - Hunting Brook Gardens is made up of five acres of contemporary exotic gardens and fifteen acres woodland. Conversely, Powerscourt is one of the world’s great gardens, named by National Geographic as the third finest garden across the entire globe.

Thursday 05 June

Dublin – Ferry- Bodnant - Manchester

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An early morning ferry will get to Holyhead in Wales before mid-day. In the afternoon the ever-popular Bodnant Gardens will be visited and possibly a stop at Chester on the way to our final destination, three nights in central Manchester.


Friday 06 June

RHS Bridgewater

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The last Garden on the tour is the 154-acre Royal Horticultural Society Bridgewater Garden.  Definetly different to the other RHS gardens, they even grow weeds!

Saturday 07 June


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A free day to explore this city at leisure or some last minute retail therapy. Farewell dinner tonight.

Manchester is the now flourishing ‘capital of the north’ and it reflects its extraordinary 18th century wealh.  See the regenerating city centre and the revitalised Salford Quays; now home to MediaCity UK and the expanded northern hub of the BBC.


Sunday 08 June

Manchester – Singapore

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Transfer to the airport for a mid-morning departure on Singapore airlines.                


Monday 09 June

Singapore – Auckland

At Singapore change planes to arrive in Auckland late evening.

Please ask about extending your UK/Europe holiday!


• Economy air flights: Auckland – Singapore - London // Manchester –Singapore – Auckland

• All transfers and transport as outlined

• 20 nights’ accommodation in England, Ireland and Wales

• First class hotels with private facilities

• Meals as specified

• Sightseeing and entrance fees as specified 

• RHS membership

• See garden booklet for garden information 

• Jack Hobbs to escort, subject to 20 persons travelling

Included Garden Visits

• Bodnant Garden

• Belvedere House

• Birr Castle Demesne

• Blarney Castle

• Bridgewater

• Dyffryn Fernant

• Eden Project

• Hunting Brook

• Kilmacurragh

• Llanover Garden

• Lost Gardens of Heligan

• RHS Rosenoor Garden

• Wales National Botanic Garden

• Powerscout

• Stourhead

• The Garden House

• The Garinish Island Gardens


• You cannot begin or continue to travel if you have received a positive Covid-19 test in the last 7 days.


ESTIMATED Cost Per Person * 

Auckland - Auckland
Twin ShareSingle


Business Class Upgrade (Limited Spaces)


Premium Economy Class Upgrade  (Limited Spaces)


Early Booking Discount (04 October 2024) $150
Previous International Pukekohe Travel Tour Discount $100

*This is a cash price. Credit cards will incur a 1.5% fee
*Itinerary and costs subject to change, airline and fuel charges and currency fluctuations prior to final payment


• Travel Insurance – compulsory – please ask us for a quote

• Items of a personal nature

• Tipping and gratuities

• Items not specified

• Airport and airline taxes (approx. NZD450)


Booking Conditions

• A non-refundable deposit of $1000 per person will secure a place on the tour

• Full payment no later than 15 March 2025



• From the date of Booking until 15 March 2025 – loss of deposit

• After 15 March 2025 – no refund


Travel Insurance

 Travel insurance is essential  - please ask for a quote. 


General Information

By day – comfortable touring clothes and walking shoes.
By night – smart casual


England /  Wales -British pound

Ireland  - Euro


• A current passport is required, valid six months beyond the date of travel

• No visa is required for New Zealand Passport holders

• All other passport holders - please ask


Weather              Max ˚c          Min ˚c    

London                18                10

Dublin                 18                9

Cork                   18             11

Health and Mobility

Walking tours are an important part of the itinerary and a good standard of health is required with the ability to walk on uneven surfaces and climb stairs.


Terms and Conditions

For full terms and conditions please visit our website www.pukekohetravel.co.nz/ termsandconditions or ask our tour consultant for a copy

Note: Pukekohe Travel reserves the right to correct errors and omissions on our website without recourse.
* Itinerary subject to change