The Woodland Garden at Ardkinglas, near Cairndow at the head of Loch Fyne, is one of my favourite places. I have visited a number of times and recently spent another day there.
Visiting at Rhododendron time you encounter sights like this.
I know that not everyone shares my love of Rhoddies, but I was just blown away by what I encountered last week.
The garden is also home to some spectacular trees, such as this European silver fir. It is around 250 years old and when young it may have been damaged by frost or deer, and it has grown with four large trunks!
More colour ...
And another 'Wow'!
Ardkinglas House was built by Sir Robert Lorimer for Sir Andrew Noble and completed in 1907. The earlier buildings on the estate are described here. The house, a family home, is only open to the public on certain days during the summer. I was lucky to be able to join a tour this time.
It helps to have a knowledgeable and enthusiastic guide, and we certainly had that. One of the most interesting houses I've ever visited.
The OS map from 1874 shows a 'model railway' running along the shoreline at Ardkinglas. It was constructed in 1866. Its story is here.
The only surviving artifact relating to the model railway is this axle and wheels, on a shelf in the house!
The ornamental pond in the grounds is called 'The Caspian'.
The centrepiece of the Ladies' Garden (not usually open to the public) is this small pond, with an 'unusual' statue!
Azaleas galore! What a wonderful place.
The estate website is here. For a bird's eye view of the house and surroundings, see here.