Earlier this year I discovered The Sculpture Park in Surrey, about an hour’s drive from my home. I loved exploring its winding paths through woodlands and beside picturesque ponds and discovering hundreds of fabulous sculptures in every shape, size, and genre. It was enthralling! Since then, I’ve visited another wonderful local park, the Hannah Peschar Sculpture Garden, and I hope to visit many more. For a little inspiration, I’ve asked my fellow bloggers about their favourite sculpture parks around the world. Starting in England with the two parks I recently visited here’s our guide to the best sculpture parks in Europe. A guide to sculpture parks further afield will follow soon.

Sculpture Parks in England

Hannah Peschar Sculpture Garden, Surrey

Recommended by Kathryn, Mandala Meadow

Hannah Pescher Sculpture Garden in England

This beautiful and tranquil sculpture garden in the south of England is home to an ever-changing collection of contemporary sculptures. Founded and originally curated by Hannah Peshcar some 36 years ago, the garden now boasts over 200 pieces by artists from across Europe.

Once part of a large estate designed between 1915 and 1920, the park is now a smaller, independent 10-acre garden, set around a 15th-century grade 2 listed timber frame cottage. The current curators, Anthony Paul and Vikki Leedham have continued where Hannah left off.

Since its opening, the garden itself has been in the capable hands of award-winning landscape designer Anthony Paul. He has redesigned the garden, creating new ponds and introducing some spectacular large-leaved plants which form stunning living sculptures.

Cost: £12.50 for adults, £8.50 for students, over 60s, and people with disabilities, £7.50 for children aged 12 to 6, £4.50  for a carer when accompanying the person they care for, Gardeners’ World 2 for 1 – Buy 1 ticket per 2 people and show a valid voucher on entry.

Recommended length of visit: 2 hours

Facilities: No on-site refreshments | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | Dogs allowed| Free onsite parking | Toilet facilities | Limited disabled access | No disabled toilets

Address: Black & White Cottage, Standon Lane, Ockley, Surrey, RH5 5QU, England

How to get there by public transport: The closest main train station is Dorking, which has a taxi rank – it is a 15-20 minute drive from the station to the Garden. No buses.

Further information: Hannah Peschar Sculpture Garden


The Sculpture Park, Surrey

Recommended by Kathryn, Mandala Meadow 

The Sculpture Park, Surrey,one of the best sculpture parks in England

Hidden in a natural valley by the village of Churt in Surrey, The Sculpture Park, is home to hundreds of fascinating sculptures dotted around woodland paths and natural springs, in a truly magical setting. While some artworks are permanent features, many change regularly as pieces are sold and new ones put on display. The range of work is fascinating, from the quirky to the classical. Some are humorous while others make a political statement and some just completely take you by surprise.

There’s so much to see here that it’s hard to fit it all into one visit. Allow plenty of time to explore the woodland trails that wind their way through one of the most exciting sculpture parks in England.

Read my review in full, A magical day out at The Sculpture Park

Cost: Tickets can be booked in advance here and currently cost £10 for adults, £5 for children, over 65s, students, disabled, carers plus Eventbrite’s booking fee. Under 3s are free.

Recommended length of visit: 4 hours or more

Good to know: No on-site refreshments | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | Dogs allowed | Free onsite parking | Toilet facilities | No disabled access

Address: Corner of Jumps and Tilford Road, Churt, Nr Farnham, Surrey, GU10 2LB, England

Parking: There’s a small parking bay at the entrance to the park that fills up quickly. Once this is full there is roadside parking but please do park carefully and with respect for others.

Refreshments: The pub, Bel and the Dragon, Churt has an excellent reputation. It is easy to leave the park to take a break for some refreshments at the pub before reentering the park. You may need to book in advance so please check their website for up to date information.

Further information: The Sculpture Park.



Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail, Gloucestershire

Recommended by Richard, RJ About Glos

Best sculpture parks in England, Forest of Dean

The Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail in Gloucestershire fantastically combines art and nature, in the heart of the forest that was once a royal hunting ground.

On arrival, visitors start at Beechenhurst Lodge which has a visitor centre, cafe, picnic area and parking. The cafe serves a variety of lunch options, freshly baked pastries and cakes. You can also pick up a map and guidebook here to help you navigate the forest. Alternatively, before you go, download a map and guide from their website to help you explore.

The whole of the trail is in the beautiful forest and has clearly marked trails. To see all the sculptures, you need to walk 4.5 miles, some of which is steep in places. The area is a great place to spot wildlife too. If you are quiet and observant, you might see deer, wild boar, and buzzards circling above.

There are 16 sculptures on the site, all designed to blend into the landscape. Many of these reflect the local Forest of Dean Heritage. One highlight is a sculpture called Cathedral, a stained glass window suspended above a forest trail. The Forest of Dean is known for its mining heritage and a few of the sculptures highlight this, including The Heart of Stone and Coal Measure Giants.

The Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail is a great day out if on an adventure in this part of Gloucestershire.

Cost: Free

Recommend length of visit: 2 to 3 hours

Good to know: On-site cafe | On-site toilets | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | Dogs allowed | On-site parking

Address: Speech House Road, Coleford, Gloucestershire, GL16 7EL, England

How to get there: The Forest of Dean Sculpture trail is easy to reach by car or by public transport from Gloucester or Coleford.

Further information: Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail


Yorkshire Sculpture Park

By Helen on her Holidays

Yorkshire Sculpture Park, one of the best sculpture parks in England

The Yorkshire Sculpture Park was one of the UK’s first permanent outdoor galleries for sculpture, and it’s still one of the largest of its kind in the world.

Near Wakefield in West Yorkshire, the park is just on the border with South Yorkshire, and halfway between Leeds and Sheffield. With 500 acres of beautiful and historic parkland, and high-quality pieces from internationally renowned artists, it’s a brilliant day out for all the family.

The park is set in what used to be the grounds of Bretton Hall, a grand stately home, later a college. The park displays a wide range of sculptures from around the world and also hosts a programme of exhibitions. Sculptor Henry Moore, who was born in nearby Castleford and studied at Leeds College of Art visited in 1979 and asked for his work to be displayed here; there are now several Henry Moore sculptures set on the sloping banks near the entrance.

Sculptors including Damien Hirst, Ai Weiwei, Rachel Kneebone and Chiharu Shiota have all had works displayed at this sculpture park in recent years.

There are five food and drink outlets at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, ranging from a table-service restaurant to a cafeteria, coffee shop and kiosk, but one of the most popular options is to bring a picnic. There are lots of lovely picnic spots around the park; under trees, on the grassy slopes, by the lake, or by your favourite sculpture.

Cost: £6 per person. Under 18s are free.

Recommend length of visit: 3 to 5 hours

Good to know: On-site restaurants | On-site toilets | Disabled access and toilets | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | Dogs allowed | Indoor galleries | Learning centre | Large on-site car park

Address: Yorkshire Sculpture Park, West Bretton, Wakefield WF4 4LG England (use WF4 4JX for your sat nav)

How to get there by public transport: Regular bus service from Barnsley and Wakefield to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park | Nearest mainline station is Wakefield Westgate

Further information: Yorkshire Sculpture Park


Sculpture Parks in Europe

Château La Coste, Provence, France

Recommended by Nadine, Le Long Weekend

Château La Coste, Provence, France

Château la Coste is a destination vineyard in Provence, France. Not only can you sample the fine wines grown and produced on-site, but there are also several restaurants, galleries, a bookshop, and even a hotel within the grounds.

The main attraction for many, though, is the thoughtfully designed Art & Architecture walk. Set within the grounds of the estate, the trail weaves through the vineyard, taking in several sculptures by artists and architects from all around the globe. Some of the installations are interactive, some quirky, and others will fill you with wonder.

The entire walk takes around 2 hours to complete in total, with or without a guide. If you have kids that love exploring, it may take a little longer! It’s a fun thing to do at any time of the year, as the views change with the seasons.

Guided walks are available in either English or French, and you’re allowed to take your dog as long as they are on a leash.

After you’ve completed the walk, you can enjoy a picnic in the grounds, or eat at one of the acclaimed on-site restaurants. Head to the Terrace for a casual dining experience al fresco, or the Tadao Ando to dine by the water’s edge.

The entire estate has an artistic and architecturally designed appeal, so if you’re interested, you’ll find plenty to admire at every turn. Don’t miss a visit to the art centre before you leave, where you can pick up a souvenir of your visit to this very special place in Provence.

Cost: Unguided – €15 for adults, €12 for children. Guided – €25 for adults and €15 for children.

Recommended length of visit: 2 to 3 hours

Good to know: Free on-site parking | On-site restaurants | On-site toilets | Disabled access and toilets | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | Dogs allowed

Address: 2750 Route de la Cride le Puy-Sainte Réparade, 13610, France

How to get there: You will need a car to reach Chateau la Coste.

Further Information: Château La Coste


Catherine Park, Tsarskoe Selo, St Petersburg, Russia

Recommended by Anna, Travel Cultura

Catherine Park, one of the best sculpture parks in Europe

Catherine Park is a part of Tsarskoe Selo, a former residence of the Russian Imperial family, the Romanovs, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Tsarskoe Selo is situated in Pushkin, a town 19 miles away from Saint Petersburg.

As you wander around the beautiful gardens, you’ll discover dozens of sculptures and monuments, created in the main by Italian sculptors in the 18th century. You’ll encounter heroes of ancient Greek and Roman mythology, such as Hercules, Andromeda, and Perseus. Other sculptures represent allegories such as Glory, Love for the Motherland and Peace, often glorifying the military exploits of Russia.

Another masterpiece of Catherine Park is Cameron Gallery. Russian Empress Catherine the Great conceived a pavilion for walks and philosophical conversations. The gallery was built in 1784. The upper level is decorated with bronze busts of famous philosophers, sages, scientists and educators — all those whose wisdom Catherine the Great appreciated a lot. Thus, not only will you enjoy a magnificent view of Catherine Park, but also spend your time in the company of Socrates, Plato, Epicurus, and Herodotus.

Within the park, there is a restaurant and a coffee house where you can eat something hearty or just have a short coffee break. Picnics in the park are not allowed.

To see the sculptures in Catherine Park, visit it from April to October. During winter times, the sculptures are hidden in special boxes that protect them from cold and humidity.

Cost: 150 Rubles (about £1.50)

Recommended length of visit: 3 to 5 hours

Good to know: Onsite restaurant | Onsite toilets | Children allowed | Picnics are not allowed | No onsite parking

Address: 7 Sadovaya Str., Pushkin, St. Petersburg, 196601, Russia

How to get there by public transport: By bus or by suburban train from Saint Petersburg to Pushkin.

Further Information: Catherine Park, Tsarskoe Selo


Vigeland Sculpture Park, Oslo, Norway

By Melissa, Parenthood and Passports

Vigeland Park, Norway

Vigeland Park is the world’s largest sculpture park ever created by a single artist. The park, located in Oslo, Norway, is home to more than 200 distinct statues all created by Norwegian sculptor Gustav Vigeland. Each of the unique sculptures represents a stage in the cycle of life, from infancy to death.

This free sculpture park, which has been around since the 1940s, is a true celebration of the complexity of life. At the centre of the park, marking the highest point in Vigeland park, The Monolith column towers prominently over the park. The intricately carved stone statue depicts 121 humans clinging to each other, all intertwined together around the column.

Leading up to The Monolith, visitors will pass numerous interesting statues as they cross a sculpture-lined bridge. Perhaps the most popular one among tourists, Angry Boy, is one of the most famous statues within the open-air exhibit. The sculpture depicts a young toddler boy who is clearly upset, throwing a tantrum, and about to stomp his foot. Many visitors to the park hold the statue’s hand, whether as an act of comfort to the child statue or for good luck. So many people have touched the child’s hand over the years, that it has become shiny in comparison to the rest of the now dull, bronze statue.

The sculpture park can be found within Frogner Park, the largest public green space in Norway’s capital. If you are visiting Oslo with kids, Frogner is not only home to Vigeland sculpture park, there is also a swimming pool, cafe, and the biggest playground in all of Norway.

Cost: Free

Recommended length of visit: 1 to 2 hours

Good to know: No on-site facilities or refreshments | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | Dogs allowed

Address: Vigelandmuseet, Nobels gate 32, N-0268, Oslo, Norway

How to get there by public transport:  Tram 12 or bus 20 to Vigeland Park. Paid parking is available by Monolittveien, Middelthunsgate by Frognerbadet and by Halvdan Svartes gate 50.

Further Information: Vigeland Sculpture Park


Park Güell, Barcelona, Spain

Recommended by Christine,  Live Love Run Travel

Park Guell, Barcelona, Spain - one of the best sculpture parks in Europe

Park Güell is a large park in Barcelona, Spain, where you can easily spend hours exploring the grounds and enjoying the views of the city. The park is most famous for the fabulous creations by Gaudi in the Monumental Zone. Plan to spend at least two hours here discovering such works as the curved walkway of the Laundry Room Portico,  the stunning view from the Greek Theatre and the famous Dragon Stairway (don’t touch the dragon!).

Although the Monumental Zone is open 24 hours a day, most daylight hours require tickets. During busy days, the line can get quite long if you try to get tickets on arrival. Instead, book your tickets online ahead of time. You can book up to 3 months in advance.

Once you are in the Monumental Zone, you can stay as long as you would like, so take your time to walk around and enjoy the various levels of the area. Once you leave, you cannot reenter without another ticket. There is a restaurant in the Monumental Zone or you can bring your own refreshments to enjoy the picnic area in the park.

Cost: €10 for adults, €7 for 7 to 12-year-olds and the over 65s, free for under 7-year-olds,

Recommended length of visit: 2 to 3 hours

Good to know: On-site restaurant | Onsite toilets | Disabled access and toilets | Picnics allowed | Children allowed

Address: Park Güell, 08024 Barcelona, Spain

How to get there: Parking in the area is limited, so public transportation is the easier way to get here. The nearest metro stations are Lesseps or Vallcarca on the green line (L3). The bus routes, H6, D40 can also be used.

Further Information: Park Güell


Skulpturen Park Köln, Cologne, Germany

Recommended by Kerry, VeggTravel

Skulpturen Park Köln, Cologne, Germany

The Skulpturenpark Köln is a free open-air sculpture park in the heart of Cologne, Germany. The unique venue features loaned works from previous exhibitions as well as an impressive permanent collection. Every few years there is a different theme where specific installations are created especially for the park.

From 2020 to 2022, the theme is ‘Natural Takeover’. Inspired by the global pandemic and its hold over the world, the art has an underlying message of environmentalism and divergence. Particularly eye-catching pieces include Mary Bauermeister’s 130 tree trunk installation that represents the unpredictability and power of nature. A contrasting piece is Katja Novitskova ‘corn snakes’ which depicts object-based photographic cutouts that look different from alternative perspectives. This depicts our virtual realm and a different form of reality.

The first Sunday every month hosts a public guided tour from 3 pm. For adults, this tour costs 8 Euros but will give you a much better understanding and appreciation of the unique sculptures and their creators.

Entrance to the park is free so it makes a great location for repeat visits or to relax with a picnic. If you’d rather buy food there, head to the Richters Restaurant from 12pm for lunch or to use the toilet facilities. There is a nearby café located near the zoo.

Many people stumble across the Sculpture Park by accident. However, the intriguing and artistic collection of masterpieces means a visit should be on your list of things to do in Cologne Old Town.

Cost: Free

Recommended length of visit: 1 to 2 hours

Good to know: Onsite restaurant | Onsite toilets |Disabled access and toilets | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | No onsite car park

Address: Sculpture Park Cologne Foundation Elsa-Brändström-Str. 9 50668 Cologne, Germany

How to get there by public transport: Take the subway from Dom/Hauptbahnhof in the direction of Reichensperger Platz line 16 or line 18 in the direction of Buchheim Herler Straße or Thielenbruch. At Reichensperger Platz leave the subway. From here, take the bus, line 140 Worringer Straße (one stop) or go on foot down the Riehler Straße in the direction of Zoo/Flora to the Skulpturenpark Köln.

Further Information: Skulpturen Park Köln


Memento Park, Budapest, Hungary

Recommended by Sam, My Flying Leap

Memento Park, Budapest

For an incredible step back through local history that’s a bit off the tourist path, you’ll want to check out Memento Park in Budapest. It’s an open-air museum with 42 statues and plaques from Hungary’s Communist period during the height of the Cold War.

The park feels a bit surreal given the shifts in the political climate. The Communist era feels like such a distant past. The atmosphere is heightened by the dramatic period music playing as you enter the park. And it’s well worth the walk down memory lane.

Memento Park is made of statues gathered from the city of Budapest and the surrounding area after the fall of Communism. The park opened in 1993 to encourage people to think freely about the past and what dictatorship and democracy mean. And when you’re surrounded by statues of historical figures like Marx, Engels, and Lenin, it’s easy to do. The opening was to celebrate the second anniversary of the Soviet withdrawal from Hungary as well as Communist leaders and local heroes. You’ll also see statues representing the Hungarian working class that evoke the drama of these tough times.

While there is an entrance fee, you can visit Witness Square for free The highlight of this part of the park is the statue called Stalin’s Boots. The original was pulled down from its pedestal during the Hungarian Revolution and it was recreated and added to the park as a highlight.

Memento Park is an interesting history lesson about a time you may not know a lot about. It’s a celebration of the end of the Hungarian Soviet occupation and well worth seeing when you visit Budapest.

Cost: 1800 HUF for adults, 1200 HUF for children | Guided tours from 2900 HUF per person

Recommended length of visit: 1 to 2 hours

Good to know: No facilities | Children allowed

Address: Budapest, Balatoni út – Szabadkai utca sarok, 1223 Hungary

How to get there by public transport: Memento can be reached via local bus 150 in the direction of Campona, which can be boarded from the Kelenföld train station (Metro Line 4) or Újbuda-központ. There’s also a direct bus service from Deák Ferenc Square that leaves at 11 a.m. every day and shuttles passengers to the gates of the park.

Further Information: Memento Park


Westersingel Sculpture Route, Rotterdam, Holland

Recommended by Lara, The Best Travel Gifts

Westersingel Sculpture Route, Rotterdam, Holland

The Westersingel Sculpture route is a one-kilometre-long route along a beautiful boulevard in Rotterdam, The Westersingel, where you’ll also find many good restaurants and bars. The route consists of a total of seventeen sculptures including masterpieces by famous artists such as Pablo Picasso (number 12 at the crossroad of the Westersingel and the Witte de Withstraat) and Auguste Rodin (number 8).

The trail is part of the cultural axis and The International Sculpture Collection of the city of Rotterdam. It’s the perfect free thing to do for art and culture lovers in Rotterdam.

For those who would like to experience more art in Rotterdam, the route finishes at Museumpark. Here, some of the city’s finest museums can be found including The Kunsthal, Chabot Museum, and the Museum of Boijmans Van Beuningen.

Cost: Free

Recommended length of visit: Less than an hour

Address: Westersingel 1, 3014 GM Rotterdam, Holland

How to get there by public transport: The park is a five-minute walk from Rotterdam Central Station

Further Information: Westersingel Sculpture Route


Tarot Garden – Giardino dei Tarocchi, Tuscany, Italy

Recommended by Lisa, Travel Connect Experience

Tarot Garden, Tuscany, Italy

The Tarot Garden is a contemporary sculpture park located in southern Tuscany, a few miles from the Tyrrhenian coast. One of the most beautiful gardens in Italy, it was born from the vision of the French-American artist Niki De Saint Phalle.

For the creation of this art park, the artist was inspired by Park Guell in Barcelona and the ancient Garden of Monsters in Bomarzo, Italy. Niki, along with a team of artists, created a sculpture trail on a hill near the small town of Capalbio. It consists of 22 main sculptures, representing the Major Arcana of the Tarot, revisited by the artist’s genius. The park took about 10 years to create using mirrors, ceramics and iron in a magnetic vortex of bright colours. The shapes of the anthropomorphic statues are round, feminine, and voluptuous, in the style that made Niki De Saint Phalle famous all over the world. In fact, the artist has produced sculptures in many cities in Europe and North America.

The Tarot Garden is open from April 1 to October 15, from 2.30 pm to 7.30 pm. The entrance ticket costs €14. To visit it takes about an hour and you need comfortable shoes because there are several climbs and descents to deal with.

Cost: Adults: €15 | Children 7 to 22 years, and over 65s €9 | Under 7 years old and adults with 74% invalidity and one carer free access

Recommended length of visit: 2 to 3 hours

Good to know: No on-site refreshments | Onsite toilets | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | On-site car park | Not accessible by public transport

Address: Giardino dei Tarocchi Pescia Fiorentina, Capalbio Provincia di Grossetto (58100) Italy

How to get there: The best way to reach the park is by private car or by train to Grosseto and then by cab.

Further Information: Tarot Garden


Versailles Gardens, near Paris, France

By Elisa, World in Paris

Sculptures in the Versailles Gardens, France

The Gardens of Versailles, which surround the magnificent Palace of Versailles on three sides, with more than 250 sculptures is one of the largest outdoor sculpture museums in the world.

The gardens were commissioned by King Louis XIV when he moved with his family from the Louvre to Versailles. The designer, André Le Notre, was the most famous landscape designer of his time.

The Petit Parc is the closest garden to the palace. It has a French-style layout with a geometric design and a wonderful variety of flowering plants and trees. The majority of the sculptures are found here. They are mainly classic sculptures in marble commissioned during the XVII and XVIII centuries by the three kings who lived in Versailles. Many Greek and Roman gods and goddesses can be seen as well as many animals and mythological creatures, many with a symbolic significance. Some groups of sculptures represent an ancient myth or story, including the Latone and the Enceladus Fountains.

Located just 40km from Paris, Versailles is an easy day trip from the capital.

Cost: Free (with some ticketed events in summer)

Recommended length of visit: 3 to 5 hours

Good to know: On-site toilets | Disabled access and toilets | Picnics allowed | Children allowed | Boat rental | Bike rental | No on-site parking or refreshments

Address: Place d’Armes, 78000 Versailles, France

Nearest railway stations: Versailles Rive Droite or Versailles Chantiers train stations

Further Information: Versailles Gardens


Parikkala Sculpture Park, Finland

Recommended by Moon Ray, NomadicMun

Parikkala Sculpture Park, Finland

One of the most unique and creepiest parks in the world is the Parikkala Sculpture Park in Finland. This is the creation of world-famous Finnish self-made artist Veijo Rönkkönen. The park is the outcome of his 50 years of artistic works.

Without any formal art education, Veijo Rönkkönen created this glorious garden on a half-acre plot with 500 concrete sculptures, including animals, plants, people from different cultures, as well as self-portraits of the artist himself. most notably in the ‘Yoga Garden’ which comprises 250 sculptures of Rönkkönen as a young man.

After his death, the park was sadly left uncared for, and the condition of the statues began to deteriorate. The sculpture park does not receive any public funding but is now maintained through the voluntary entrance fees and the proceeds from the park’s boutique located in Rönkkönen’s former home in the middle of his self created world. Certain statues can also be sponsored and various events are held in the park during the summer.

There is a small cafe ‘Kuutostien Kukkokievari’ along with a picnic area in the onsite car park.

Cost: Voluntary entrance fees – adults €5, children €2 , family ticket €0, guided tours €95

Recommended length of visit: 1 to 2 hours

Useful to know: Children allowed | Dogs allowed | Picnics allowed

Address: Kuutostie 611, 59130 Koitsanlahti, Parikkala, Finland

How to get there: The park is located in Koitsanlahti, right next to Highway 6, 5 miles from the centre of Parikkala, South Karelia, Finland. It is about 200 miles from Helsinki.

Nearest railway stations: Parikkalan Rautatieasema is about 6 miles from the park from where you can hire a taxi

Further Information: Parikkala Sculpture Park


Our guide to the best sculpture parks in Europe




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