The Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens are set in a beautiful valley near Penzance, they are situated a mile or so back from the coastline between Penzance and Marazion, with glorious views of St Michael’s Mount and Mounts Bay peeping through the dense woodland. As you arrive at the gardens you will find the cafe and nursery on your right and the gallery a short stroll to your left. You are greeted by a beautiful grassy hill, sat atop the hill is a sculpture that looks like a temple. It seems a little out of place perched up on top of the hill but that seems to only strengthen its beauty. You notice other oddities around you, a brick chair, a pyramid of metal. Curiosity piqued, you then head up a woodland trail to the ticket shed so that you can explore the gardens which are full of surprising and often interactive sculptures.
With such an incredible place comes an incredible history, first owned by the monks of St. Michael’s Mount, then bought by Michael De Tremenheere in 1295. Michael began a 600 year lineage, with the land keeping the name Tremenheere. This carried on until Seymour Tremenheere, who in 1890 paved the way for the gardens (quite literally!) by creating a carriageway zigzagging up the hillside to his summer home. It is said to have been a vineyard for St. Michael’s Mount during the 15th century before being planted with beech trees by Seymour Tremenheere meaning it is now largely sheltered from prevailing winds.
You can grab a coffee, a tempting cake or an utterly scrumptious lunch and sit either in the cafe itself or grab a takeaway cup and find a spot on the hill and take in the panoramic views of Mounts Bay. Entry to the cafe, gallery and nursery is free, perfect for a relaxing afternoon on a budget! On your right, just before the cafe, is a gateway leading to a wooded lane. A gentle stream trickling on the right and trees, exotic foliage and hidden surprises on your left. A couple of minutes walk and you reach the ticket shed where you can grab a map and pay your entry fee for the sculpture gardens (£9 for adults, £4.50 for children and free for under-fives). The staff are friendly and happy to help if you have any questions.
A short walk into the woods you come across a stream, surrounded by moss-covered trees and foliage from far away lands. You can almost picture yourself in a fairytale. You can hear the water tumbling over little waterfalls down into the valley, smell the earthy scents of the forest and run your hands through the long grass that is dancing in the breeze. Climbing gently up the hills you come across sculptures, some striking and impressive, others tucked away almost hoping to be found. At the top of the hill you are treated to glorious views stretching from Newlyn to Marazion and what better place to sit and take in mother nature in full glory than the pagoda nestled in the trees.
To fully explore the wonders within the gardens give yourself around 2-3 hours, if you want to take breaks or maybe even stop and have a picnic you may want to take a whole afternoon. The gardens are open daily from 10:30am-4:30pm with last entry at 3:30pm.
The gardens close from 7th November and reopen mid February 2022, but the cafe is open daily until Christmas Day then reopens February 1st.
The Gallery is open Tuesday to Saturday 11am-4pm.
With stunning vistas, magical woodlands, striking sculptures and wide-open fields, Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens is a fantastic destination for lovers of both natural and man-made art. Sitting just outside of Penzance and now housing sculptures that both compliment and stand out from the natural beauty of the area, it is not to be missed!