Where to Go
What to See
What to Do
What's On

Fairhaven Garden

Beautiful ancient woodland, water gardens and a private broad in the heart of the Norfolk Broads

An Introduction to Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden

Boat Trips
New Growth
Old Oak Tree

The Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden comprises 53 hectares (131 acres) of beautiful ancient woodland, water gardens and a private broad at South Walsham in the heart of the Norfolk Broads. The garden was left in trust by the 2nd Lord Fairhaven in 1973, and was opened to the public in 1975. The garden is renowned for its fabulous collection of candelabra primulas – the best naturalised collection in the UK – which can be seen in May. It is also well known for magnificent Autumn Colour's in late October and early November. Fairhaven also organise events throughout the year, such as jazz music.
Local Websites

Norfolk Cottages

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden Plan

Click plan to open a larger image

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden Guided Picture Tour

We start our tour of Fairhaven Woodland and Water Gardens at the entrance, where you can not only buy tickets for the garden, but also browse the gift shop and view the map of the garden. There is also a large tea room (with both indoor and covered outdoor seating) and plant sales.
Sensual Garden
The Sensual Garden, near the entrance to Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden
Tearoom Cafe
The tea-room cafe and plant sales
Garden Bench Seat
Plenty of bench seats for a picnic

The first part of the garden is called King Oak Path and the highlight of this section is the King Oak Tree, a 950ish year old tree! The tree is home to many different species of animals and birds, as well as providing food for many others. A path leads to the ice hole, where buried ice was used to cool fresh food, preserving it for months.
King Oak Tree
The King Oak Tree
Woodland Path
Woodland path near the King Oak tree
King Oak Tree Trunk
The trunk of the King Oak
Woodland Water Views
Beautiful Woodland Water Views
Spring Growth
New spring growth
Woodland Water Views
Ice Hole Sign
Ice Hole
The Ice Hole

The West Garden is located over a series of wooden bridges and walkways. Here you get see different kinds of water plants, some with huge and dense foliage. Across the bridges, in the West Garden, you will find some newly planted Hydrangea and a rest area.
King Oak Tree
A bridge over the water to the West Garden
Dense Undergrowth
Dense undergrowth
Big Leaves
Massive foliage
Wooden Bridge
Wooden Bridge to the West Garden
Board walks over water at Fairhaven


The garden is famous for its carpet of yellow primroses and in late spring, candelabra primroses. There are also many daffodils, camellia, azaleas and rhododendron. Spring is a time to see all the new shoots and growth, such as fern fronds opening out.
It has been a few months since our last visit, so we went to see what the gardens are like in summer. We were not disappointed! A green canopy shades the hot sun from a dense green undergrowth containing many ferns, foxgloves and some enormous foliage. Water Lilies and Hydrangeas were just coming into flower.

The Old Oak
Old Oak tree in Summer
Summer Green
Green water
Big Plants
Dense undergrowth
Massive Leaves
Massive foliage
The bridges and paths are surrounded by dense green plants, with peaceful woodland and water walks.
Dense Foliage
Water bridges
Wooded Paths
Woodland walks
Water Paths
Peaceful water walks
Water Lilly
White water lilies
On hot days, the canopy of leaves is welcome!
There is a bamboo tunnel, near the water.
Tree Canopy
Tree canopy
Bamboo Tunnel
Bamboo tunnel

Throughout the year the paths are well sign posted and there are little pieces of information along the way.
You can take boat trips around the private Broad from the gardens own staithe.
Path signpost
Fairhaven boat trips around the Broad

Fairhaven Garden summary of what to SEE and DO

Beautiful woodland paths
Candelabra Primulas in spring
Magnificent autumn colours
Private broad views and boat trips
Special events such as jazz
Tea rooms an plant sales

Our Verdict

We love Fairhaven as there is always something to see all year round. They allow dogs on leads, so it makes somewhere that your dog can join in too. Even on busy days, you can feel that you are the only visitor in the garden!




Pet Friendly
Relaxing Breaks
Short Breaks
Norfolk Cottages


Clothing Store
Electronics Photo Store
Toys Games Store
Pet Store
Books Maps Store


Aerial Norfolk
Tour Suffolk
Pocket Britain
Map Moose Offline Maps
Travel Tours from Home

Hotel B&B Search
Cottage Search
Pet Friendly Search
Spa & Relaxing Search
Beach Coast Search
TourNorfolk is an independent tourism website and therefore does not represent the views of any official body. All content is copyright unless stated otherwise. See our picture re-use policy for using our pictures on your own website. Privacy Policy. TourNorfolk Sitemap. Top of Page.