The National Trust Easter Egg Trail: Dyffryn Gardens (Country Kids)

For my first Mother's Day back in 2010, Mr. TBaM took me to Dyffryn Gardens in the Vale of Glamorgan. We had a beautiful walk through the gardens pushing our little bundle in his pushchair, and it was good to revisit the site after such a long break since my last visit.

Dyffryn Gardens is a place that I'd first visited as a child with my parents, when the main house used to hold craft fayres every so often, particularly at Christmas time, and we'd wander from room to room and enjoy the immediate gardens. At the time though, things were beginning to look a little tatty, and fairly soon after the main house was closed to the public and left to fall into disrepair despite the efforts to maintain it. Visiting the venue over the past two to three years, and seeing such a stunning house boarded up, was so sad; I'd recount my memories to Mr. TBaM and sigh with nostalgia.

On Good Friday, the main house reopened finally.

January had seen the National Trust bring Dyffryn Gardens under their wing, and as a result they have spent a serious amount of money starting to restore it to the grandeur that it once knew. We visited today to take part in the National Trust Easter Egg Trail (sponsored by Cadbury's) and I will confess that I hadn't realised the house was reopening. When we registered for the Trail and were informed questions 1-4 would require us going inside, I became very excited when I realised I'd be able to actually show Mr. TBaM what I'd been waffling on about!

Dyffryn Gardens

These photos are just a small snapshot of some of those that I took (I want to save the others for another post) but what they do show is the amazing details in the house that the Easter Egg Trail encouraged the children (and adults) to examine. Questions like 'How many people can you see in the stained glass window in the Great Hall?' and 'Are there 2, 4 or 8 swans on the ceiling of the Red Drawing Room?' really encourage visitors to view the wonders of the magnificent house. The Boy has not collapsed in that middle photo above, he's lying on the provided beanbags looking at the painted ceilings.

We spent a pleasant thirty minutes sauntering from room to room in the house (we should have only spent ten minutes as the house was actually supposed to be closed but they sneaked us in), answering the questions and enjoying the beauty of the architecture. The remaining six questions were centred around the gardens and we set out to find the answers but became distracted by all the wonderful play opportunities!

Dyffryn Gardens

What else can you do on International Tree Climbing Day but climb a tree with an inviting split trunk? And really, the opportunity to cross off #2 on the National Trust's 50 Things To Do Before You're 11 & ¾ was too much to resist! 'Rolling down a really big hill' it was then! ('Really big' is very subjective when you're only 3 & ¾!)

It was such a pleasure to see Dyffryn Gardens on its way to being the magnificent venue that it once was, as a resident of the Vale of Glamorgan I'm very grateful to the National Trust for adopting it and making this happen. We're keeping our fingers crossed for sunny weather tomorrow again, as we want to go back and finish our Easter Egg Trail off!

country kids

Learning for Life

We received free entry into the Gardens in order to review the Easter Egg Trail. My opinion is honest and unbiased.

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Comments

  1. says

    Lovely to see an old house being restored, Well done the NT! Looks like they have set up a great Easter Egg hunt and I love the questions to ensure a little learning of the history of the place too. The boy does look so much older than his 3 and 3/4 years in that tree!

  2. Melksham Mum says

    It looks like a lovely place. I love a bit of the old NT me and so glad they're moving with the times. The beanbags are a great idea!

  3. says

    We have a beautiful national trust property near us but I don't think my wee man is old enough to really appreciate it yet to justify spending the money but we are able to enjoy the grounds which are just as beautiful! I too hate to see beautiful things go into disrepair. Looks like you had an amazing day and the boy looks like he is having as much fun as usual! He is so adventurous!

  4. I heart motherhood says

    NT really do a good trail don't they. The boy looks like he's having loads of fun and reminding me how I used to love rolling down hills myself!!

  5. Nichola fabfortymum says

    What a stunning place and equally stunning pictures, your boy looks like he had a fantastic time. He's just beaming with delight

  6. says

    i am hoping to take my two for their NT easter egg hunt this week as daddy was too ill to taker us over the weekend. the boy is looking very pleased with himself and rightly so – i love seeing him being such a 'boy'. great shot of him in the tree and rolling down the hill. sounds like you all enjoyed a great day out x

  7. says

    This looks like it was so well organised, having read Johnson Babies I had a feeling of Deja vu – didn't you 2 do a post of Barry isalnd beach at the same time too once?
    I love that photo of The Boy up the tree, you'll have that list ticked off in no time at all.

  8. says

    The Boy looks so happy to be outside having fun. It's fantastic to see the real benefit of organisations like the National Trust when buildings like this are saved for everyone to enjoy. We'd have loved to have done one of the Easter Egg Trails this year, I'm getting so frustrated by having no car!

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  1. […] the wonderful work that they are doing in restoring and preserving the nation's history. Visiting a local mansion house which has been boarded up since I used to visit it as a child, was like opening up a treasure box; […]

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