Pictures of Exbury
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Standing close to the saltmarshes and creeks along the Beaulieu River, in an area of outstanding natural beauty, Exbury must be one of the most captivating villages for miles around.
From this lovely location there are views over the Solent towards Cowes on the Isle of Wight and of course you get a 'birds eye view' of towering liners as they head towards Portsmouth harbour. This is also the location for the magical gardens surrounding Exbury House, formerly the home of the famous Mitford family. The estate was sold to Lord Forster, who on his appointment as Governor of Australia, sold it on to Mr. Lionel de Rothchild and today the estate remains in the hands of his son, Mr. Edmund de Rothchild.
Exbury gardens were designed an built during the 20th-century and the garden is now famous for the celebrated Rothchild collection of magnificent rhododendrons, azaleas and camellias. In all seasons these gardens are resplendent in vivid colours, early spring shows bright daffodils gracing a beautiful meadow and in summer poppies bloom along with other glorious summer species. The Sundial garden features exotic flowers and the Rock garden tumbles with stunning plants. Autumn brings the glory of Maple and beech, and of the garden planted when the house was owned by the Mitford's there are wonderful Cypress trees and magnificent Cedars, used to this day by roosting peacocks! Lionel de Rothchild loved flowers, his garden was a ruling passion to which he dedicated his life until he died in 1942. Following his death, Exbury House was requisitioned by the Royal Navy, leaving his widow with a staff of only four pensioners to try to keep her husband's life's work alive. When Edmund de Rothchild returned from the war he continued his fathers work in making the garden the haven of peace and tranquillity we experience today. For the comfort of visitors there is a restaurant and a tea gardens on the tennis court, there is a gift shop and a plant centre selling exquisite varieties of Exbury plants. There is even a steam train to take you on a magical tour round the northern part of the garden, not only will it 'take the weight of your feet' but it is great fun for one and all. Another option is to tour the whole garden from the comfort of a chauffer driven buggy!
Many of the charming houses and cottages seen in the village were built by the Rothchild family as homes for the families of those who worked on the estate and in the 'big' house. In the lovely church dedicated to St. Katherine there are memorials to past owners of Exbury House.
Apart from enjoying Exbury, the region offers a wealth of visitor attractions. The beauty of the new forest is within easy reach so too is Bucklers Hard Maritime Museum found at the centre of Bucklers Hard, a picturesque 18th-century village. Then there is the joy of the Solent with the opportunity of deep sea fishing. A visit here will give you many happy memories and leave you wishing to return.
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