Review 2014: The Vyne


The Vyne, National Trust

Vyne Road, Sherborne St John, Basingstoke, Hampshire, RG24 9HL
We went to the Vyne last weekend and had a fabulous time. It was when the weather was gorgeous and it felt like the first day of spring.

We spent a long time in the Walled Garden, playing on the toys and talking to the chickens.


We then went to the Hobbit play area and had a brilliant time!


We finished off our morning lying on our picnic rug on the lawn in front of the house, people watching and looking out for aeroplanes!



There is LOADS to do at the Vyne. As soon as you walk in, there are the lakes which have HUGE black fish in. You then walk over the mini waterfall (at least, I think that’s what it’s called).


Keep walking up the main path, towards the house and on your left is the Walled Garden.


There are bouncing toys and mini tractors that you can play on and picnic tables which have different types of tracks laid out (don’t forget your toy cars for this!).



We also had a look in the green house and spent some time looking at the chickens.


As you come out of the walled Garden you walk towards the house through a promenade of trees. I love this bit! Lol.


As you walk towards the house, you pass the tea rooms and you can also sit outside as there is an outside booth selling ice creams, etc.

Behind the Gift Shop is the new Hobbit play area. It’s fantastic and I want one of the tunnels for our garden! Miss NHM enjoyed flinging herself down the fireman’s pole with Daddy to catch her at the bottom!




We spent a long time lying on our picnic blanket on the lawns and people watching. There is also the forest behind, Morgesten Woods, which is lovely to walk through, but not much fun without an off road pushchair. We didn’t make it here this time.


I wouldn’t take anyone under the age of 5 into the house. This is because I wouldn’t want to control an under 5 in a stately home that it isn’t practical to take pushchairs into. However, you can borrow a hip carrying infant seat, which might be a good solution for very small little ones.

Get here early, to avoid the crowds. If the weather is nice, you will get the pick of the best deckchairs which are laid out on the lawn between the house and the main lake.



Is excellent but pricey. We took a picnic with us but I have eaten here before and the Sunday lunches are very yummy.


Are excellent and all eco.

Baby Facilities

The baby changing facilities are also excellent quality.There is one near the entrance when you arrive and one behind the restaurant.


Is free and there is loads. If you can’t find a space in the main car park then park in the overflow which has loads of space


  • £7.50 for adults to enter the grounds only.
  • Children under the age of 5 are free or £4 over the age of five
  • £22 for a family ticket.If you plan to visit a lot of National Trust properties, it may be worth investing in a year pass. Check out the details from last years Season ticket post.

Rating out of 5

5 out of 5 because we had such a lovely day, although I’m sure this was helped by the lovely weather.

Other Reviews

Santa’s Grotto’s/Father Christmas Visits in North Hampshire 2013

I put out a request on NorthHants Mum in September, asking if anyone has any suggestions for future posts.

Wendy sent me a great message asking me if I could research a decent garden centre for Christmas where the children will find a good Santa.

I’ve also added a few more places where you can meet Father Christmas, that aren’t garden centres.

Please let me know if I’ve missed any!

Hopefully the below helps!

Santa Grotto’s and Father Christmas Visits

Wyevale Garden Centre

Wyevale Garden Centre in Sherfield on Loddon is doing either Breakfast or Tea with Father Christmas. It’s available from 18th November until 24th December. For more details please click HERE.

Conkers Garden Centre

Father Christmas will be with the team at Conkers from Saturday 7th December and every Saturday and Sunday up until 22nd December. For more details please click HERE.

Dobbie’s Garden Centre

Dobbie’s Garden Centre in Shinfield, Reading has a Santa Grotto that is available from the 17th Nov until 24th December. For more details please click HERE.

Henry Street Garden Centre

Henry Street Garden Centre is in Arborfield, on the way to Reading. You can find out more details about visiting Father Christmas at Henry Street HERE.

Miller’s Ark

Santa will be arriving at Miller’s Ark on Saturday 23rd November, Santa is only with us ONE day this year, so do not miss seeing him in his grotto. Click HERE for more details.

Festival Place

Santa and his helpers are back for another magical Christmas at Festival Place!

Bring the kids along to enjoy some festive fun at our enchanting Santa’s grotto. Watch their faces light up as they experience the grotto for the first time, complete with fir trees, train ride and snow!

Your visit will cost £4.50 per child and includes a train ride, a visit to Santa to tell him those Christmas wishes, an early Christmas gift, a letter from Santa and a photo opportunity!

Book your visit online here.

The Vyne

Follow the Baubles and find Father Christmas, stay for Christmas lunch and then make some Christmas Crackers. For more details please click HERE.

Have I missed any?