Regional Routes

Invitations to visit gardens and landscapes

The parks and gardens of the European Garden Heritage Network are ideal starting points to explore the distinctive garden design and natural and built heritage of the participating regions. Visitors can discover hidden treasures, gain a fresh perspective on the familiar and enjoy the unique features of a cultural landscape!

Each of the current twelve garden routes in England, Germany, France, Belgium and the Netherlands has a theme that highlights the particular characteristics of a region and includes views of the cultural landscape. The routes raise the awareness of the significance of parks and gardens, urban design, heritage site preservation, cultural tourism and sustainable development, as well as regional identity.

Currently, around 180 parks and gardens, museums, historic city centres, modern architecture and areas of natural beauty as well as some manfactures of regional products are represented on these routes. Following the course of the Loire in France, the rolling hills of Cheshire in England or on the plains of Germany’s Niederrhein on the way from one garden to another, the uniqueness and diversity of the European regions are waiting to be discovered. The garden routes have also proven to be starting points for further cooperative initiatives and the promotion of regional tourism.

More than the route itself, however, the aim of the regional routes is to act as a gateway to discover the entire regions, providing regional themes as signposts to sights and attractions that may otherwise have gone unnoticed by the visitor. Visits to these regional garden paradises and landscapes allow a wonderful insight into the common European cultural heritage.

E.g. England: Situated in Britain’s southwest, the Somerset region is characterised by unspoiled landscapes, from limestone cliffs to gently rolling sandstone and historic wetlands, as well as numerous market towns, manor houses and notable gardens. The anchor garden at Hestercombe with its 18th century English landscape, a 19th century Victorian terrace and an Edwardian formal garden, presents traditional British garden culture at its best.

E.g. Germany: The garden routes in Nordrhein-Westfalen were developed from earlier schemes and projects that have been in existence for many years. Among these are the “REGIONALE links und rechts der Ems“ in Münsterland, the “Straße der Gartenkunst zwischen Rhein und Maas” and the project “Garten_Landschaft Ost WestfalenLippe”. The Ruhrgebiet has long been known as an industrial region. Increasingly, parks and gardens are becoming important elements of a new and sustainable urban development. From formally designed castle, monastery and manor gardens to converted industrial landscapes, the garden routes let you experience the Ruhrgebiet’s structural transformation!

E.g. France: A dense network of rivers, 450 km of coastline, broad fields and the chateaux of the landed gentry are characteristic features of the western Loire Valley region. All around the anchor garden, Parc Oriental in Maulévrier, garden treasures are waiting to be discovered. The park is Europe’s largest Japanese garden with 300 different plant species and light shows. Together with regional specialities such as wine and cider production, fish and oysters or a salt garden museum, garden design can not only be seen, but smelled, tasted, touched and experienced as well!

The EGHN’s goal is to invite other regions to join the network. First results could be achieved by including gardens from Swden, Ireland and Italy as cornerstone for future routes. There is also interest from Malta, Rhodes, the Amsterdam region and Brittany.

This will offer visitors an even broader choice of attractive opportunities to learn to love garden design at a regional level and to gain insight into the European idea behind the garden network.

The central information platform for the garden routes, as well as for the EGHN itself, is the website www.eghn. eu. Here users can find necessary and useful information in English, German and French and for the regional routes and gardens in Limburg (NL), Westflanders (B) and North Hesse (D) also in Dutch.

For four regions in Nordrhein-Westfalen as well as for the route in Limburg, there is an additional garden guide, which informs visitors about the individual stops along the garden route. You can receive this information at either the gardens themselves, from Stiftung Schloss Dyck or as download from this page:

EGHN_Route Ostwestfalen-Lippe (pdf-file, 4,8 MB, German, English, French)
EGHN_Route Münsterland (pdf-file, 5,5 MB, German, English, French)
EGHN_Route Ruhrgebiet (pdf-file, 3,6 MB, German, English, French)
EGHN_Route Rheinland (pdf-file, 4,2 MB, German, English, French)
EGHN_Route Limburg (pdf-file, 6,8 MB, Dutch, German, English, French)

Download of reports and booklets related to this action (in English - if no other language is mentioned):

EGHN_Case Study "Gardens cultivating local pride and regional standing" (pdf-file, 2 MB)

EGHN_Case Study "Gärten fördern lokale Strukturen und regionale Identität" (pdf-file, 2 MB, German)

EGHN_Case Study "Les jardins promeuvent les structures locales et l'identité régional" (pdf-file, 2 MB, French.)

EGHN_Paper on voluntary work "Renaissance bürgerschaftlichen Engagements" (pdf-file, 0,3 MB, German)

EGHN_Value and impact assessment of Tatton Park (pdf-file, 0,9 MB)