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Cascade Gardens

  • 4.4

  • from 198 Google reviews

A statue in a park
A statue in a park

1 of 12

Cascade Gardens by Alan Clements. Cascade Gardens

About the garden

Cascades Gardens, The Meditation Garden and Bonsai Centre is a peaceful and natural garden to visit in the historic village of Bonsall near Matlock, Derbyshire. Refreshments are available. Inspired by Japanese gardens and Buddhist philosophy. Cascades Gardens is a celebration of Nature and an ideal place to immerse yourself in a relaxing and beautiful natural environment.

The more complex and demanding the world becomes the more we seek sanctuary in our gardens. Years of austerity, Covid and global conflict has increasingly led us to look to gardens or beautiful natural places to retreat, relax, and find peace of mind.

Cascades Gardens has been designed by the owner Alan Clements over the last 26 years from waste land in an ancient quarry, to now reflect the natural balance and harmony that can be found in unspoilt landscape. The combination of massive rocks, water and lush natural planting is intended to refresh the soul and celebrate Nature. Cascades nursery has a wide range of interesting plants in the nursery and now has a Bonsai centre where you can buy Bonsai trees, pots and tools and get friendly advice.

Changing with the seasons, there is always something new in the garden; waterfalls and hellebores in March, a delightful spring garden in April and May, roses in June and an abundance of interesting plants, shrubs and trees throughout the the year.

Cascades Gardens has many places to sit in quiet corners amongst its dramatic scenery. Perfect for reflection and meditation whatever your religion or spiritual views. On a quiet sunny day there is a sense of peace, stillness and energy throughout the garden and you can hear the sound of water wherever you are.

Ideal for garden enthusiasts, plants people and those seeking peace and quiet and relaxation, come and explore this fascinating garden which originates from a quarry, corn mill and lead mine from the 19th century. Cascades gardens is set on many levels with a new “garden room” and seats around every corner showing perennial flower beds, roses, waterside plantings and alpine and conifer rockeries. There is a great view from the cliff top path and quarry bank. Every season brings new surprises with hosts of hellebores, hostas, unusual perennial flowers, shrubs, trees and conifers.

The informal gardens have been designed to blend in with the spectacular natural landscape of rocks, cliffs and woodland. The Bonsall brook runs through the garden and flows over the ruined corn mill and many waterfalls most of the year. This gives the house its name, the Cascades. In the winter the flow of water can be a torrent and in the summer it dries up to a gentle trickle.

Alan Clements, who has been gardening for over 50 years and is Chairman of the Japanese Garden Society (Midlands) can be booked for garden talks. Garden group visits are welcome. He also runs some amazing mediation retreats at Cascade Gardens with beautiful accommodation on site. More details on this can be found at or by calling Alan direct on 07967 337404

Opening times

Garden open to the public everyday from 1st March to 30th September, 10:00am until 4:00pm It is not open to the public on Wednesdays or Thursdays except for private hire for group visits, retreats and talks by Alan Clements Last entry 3pm except by arrangement Group visits welcome.

Useful details

Garden area

4 Acres

Dog walking

Yes - Dogs on leads.

Cafe or restaurant

Food and drink facilities include a cafe/restaurant.


Yes - Children of all ages.


Yes - There is a plant shop.

Derbyshire, DE4 2AH

Check local coronavirus guidance before you visit

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Google reviews

  • 4.4

  • from 198 Google reviews

Jade Crawford

5 months ago


Spent a few nights at this unique and magical meditation garden. Host was very welcoming and pleasant and made sure we had everything we needed. Host also made a delicious cooked breakfast every morning for us with vegetarian options able. Was visiting Peak District which was around a 50 minute drive from this location. The garden is stunning and was able to walk around and take in the views. Bought a beautiful plant from the greenhouse too as a keepsake. Jake was the cutest most friendliest cat ever !!!

Sally G

5 months ago


Lovely garden. Lots of paths to explore and plenty of seating. Made even more interesting because of the streams and waterfalls and a lead mine to explore. Very good cakes and coffee. A very pleasant young man working in the garden made us very welcome. Plants for sale. Dog friendly.

Hazel Brown

4 months ago


Really tranquil, well stocked garden. The friendly owner welcomes you and provides a self guided tour leaflet. Moving from bench to bench you discover the garden's secrets. The garden is promoted for meditation but in reality this is difficult as someone is always waiting for your bench - but non the less the garden is tranquil with it's water features , sculptures and dense planting. A very pleasant couple of hours. There is a serve yourself refreshment area including cream scones and other cakes. The plant sales area includes an impressive collection of bonsai trees.

Trish Bradshaw

4 months ago


The owner has done an amazing job, and achieved what he set out to do.The gardens are absolutely beautiful, calming and relaxing. There's also a small cafe, selling cakes and snacks. Well worth a visit.

Gillian Entwistle

a month ago


A warm welcome from the owner and beautiful garden to amble around. Not massive but lovely garden rooms to sit and relax in, which we did. Nice cakes and a coffee finished the visit off nicely. A place to spend time, read a book, people watch.

Contact the garden

01629 822813

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