The Best Secret Gardens in Cardiff

The Best Secret Gardens in Cardiff

Cardiff is remarkably green for an exciting capital city with over 330 parks and gardens. Amongst these is a collection of hidden sanctuaries where you can seek solace in nature. Here are the best secret gardens in Cardiff.

Whether you're a nature enthusiast, a history buff, or simply seeking a moment of tranquillity, these parks and gardens in Cardiff offer places to explore the urban landscape.

Dyffryn Gardens

On the outskirts of Cardiff is Dyffryn Gardens, a National Trust treasure renowned for its breathtaking Edwardian Garden design. The 55 acres were commissioned by the homeowner Reginald Cory, who had coal mines in the South Wales valleys and developed further by his descendants. Wander through its ornate terraces, fragrant rose gardens, and tranquil water lily ponds, and lose yourself in the romance of a bygone era.

Cosmeston Lakes

Escape to Cosmeston Lakes, where sprawling lakes, ancient woodlands, and wildflower meadows await. As a quarry for over 80 years, it was developed into a country park in 1978. Follow its winding trails, spot resident wildlife, and reconnect with the natural world amidst this idyllic rural retreat. It's a haven for walkers with flat, even paths accessible to everyone. It also has a children's playground, picnic benches, and BBQ areas.

Secret Garden

Don't miss the enchanting Secret Garden nestled within Bute Park. Tucked away behind towering walls and lush foliage, this hidden gem offers a tranquil escape from the urban clamour. The Secret Garden Café specialises in sourcing local, seasonal, and organic ingredients. Bute Park is Grade I listed and a Green Flag site. It has a wealth of horticulture, wildlife, and a superb tree collection. 

Roath Park Rose Garden

Lose yourself in the fragrant beauty of Roath Park's Rose Garden, a hidden gem nestled within one of Cardiff's most beloved parks. Stroll amidst its vibrant blooms, bask in the tranquillity of its surroundings and savour the simple pleasures of nature. Roath Park, gardens and lake are recognised as one of Britain's most beautiful late Victorian parks.

Rumney Hill Gardens

Discover the secluded charm of Rumney Hill Gardens, a peaceful retreat tucked away in the suburb of Rumney. The park was built in the 1950s on a former cemetery and local quarry site. Wander along its scenic paths and admire its colourful flowerbeds. The park lies on the Rhymney Trail, which follows the river to the coast. 


Secret Gardens in Cardiff

Insole Court

Steeped in history and surrounded by picturesque gardens, Insole Court offers a glimpse into Cardiff's Victorian past. Once a private home, the beautiful gardens have been open to the public since 1946. Explore its meticulously landscaped grounds with exotic plants and discover a world of timeless beauty and charm.

Forest Farm

Forest Farm is full of surprises. The nature reserve was formed in 1967 and includes the last remaining sections of the former Glamorganshire Canal, which ran from Merthyr Tydfil to Cardiff. The canal still holds fresh water and is a hunting ground for kingfishers and herons. It's also on the banks of the River Taff. Explore the diverse habitats, bird hides, ponds and marshland to discover. 

Fforest Fawr

Discover the untamed beauty of Fforest Fawr, a designated nature reserve on the outskirts of Cardiff. It is a beautiful country park with stunning scenery and spectacular views. The forest was a silica mine used in the copper, iron and steel industries and exported worldwide. With towering trees, the gentle rustle of leaves, and the occasional chirp of a hidden bird – it feels like a world away from busy roads and suburbs beyond the treeline. It is covered in bluebells in spring, and you can even pick wild garlic!

Cefn Onn

Tucked away in the northern outskirts of Cardiff, Cefn Onn Park is an oasis of wooded pathways, trickling streams, and vibrant floral displays. It was originally developed as a private garden for Ernest Prosser, the Director of the Rhymney Valley Railway, with a swimming pool and summerhouse. Today, it's Grade II listed and Green Flag listed. Lose yourself amidst its natural splendour and the sights and sounds of the countryside.

Tredegar House

On the fringes of Cardiff is Tredegar House. The red-brick structure was home for more than 500 years to the Morgan's, later Lords of Tredegar. There are three gardens within the house walls. The first garden you enter is called the Orchard Garden, and the next is the Cedar Garden. After that is the Orangery, with fruit trees that have been growing since the 18th Century. Outside the walls is Tredegar Park, which has 90 acres to explore. It is popular with local runners, dog walkers and families. Follow the path around the late, home to swans, herons and ducks. 

Bedrooms at Future Inn Cardiff

Hotel in Cardiff

Future Inn Cardiff is an ideal base for the night, offering various-sized rooms that can sleep up to four adults, including our accessible bedrooms. All rooms have a private bathroom with shower facilities, a desk with workspace and a laptop safe. Room features include an iron and ironing board, hairdryer, tea and coffee-making facilities, bottled water and a flat-screen TV.

Perks include a hotel with free parking and electric car charging, free Wi-Fi and a complimentary robe and slippers in your room, plus home away from home services like our guest laundry room, ice buckets, and ice machine you can help yourself to. 

If you want to explore these secret gardens on two wheels, bring your bike. We are a cycle-friendly hotel.

Make a Reservation

Book your stay online, where we guarantee the best rate, or with our Reservations Team on 02920 487111 or email 

Future Inn Rewards

For additional benefits, you can join the Future Inns hotel loyalty program. Alongside a member's discount rate, for every £1 you spend on accommodation, you earn 1 reward point. You also get a complimentary drink voucher to redeem in the bar when you dine. Plus, you get double points when you eat in the restaurant. Points collected can then be used to upgrade your bedroom to a suite or a free night's stay. It's also completely free to join! 

Dishes on the menu in Thomas Restaurant

Welsh Restaurant

Thomas Restaurant is ideal for fuelling up before exploring. The team serves breakfast, brunch, lunch, evening a-la-carte or traditional roasts on Sunday. A homemade Taste of Wales Afternoon Tea is served daily between 1pm-5pm, or our set menu offers 3 courses for £25 daily between 5pm-10pm. A large selection of alcoholic and soft drinks is also available, including Welsh beer and spirits, wine by the glass or the bottle, plus 2 for £16 cocktails

Reservations can be made on 02920 487111 or, or online: 

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