Hidden Highdown

Built on the uncompromising surrounds of a Sussex Chalk Pit and showcasing a lifetimes love of horticulture – Highdown Gardens is the personal collection of Sir Fredrick Stern (1884-1967) and home to many rare and beautiful plants collected during his travels China and the Himalayan regions.

Keen photographer Paul Robards tells us why Highdown Gardens is one of his favourite spots.

Highdown Paul Robards and Kath

It’s worth visiting Highdown throughout the year to see the different flower displays, from the spring daffodils, crocuses and tulips to the Hellebores, trees and flowering shrubs. It must be ones of the most tranquil places in Sussex and I have to say it is probably the warmest place in Worthing, when the sun is shining. Because the gardens are sheltered this really is the best place to see the early Spring flowers and to catch sight of the first glimpses of over winter hibernating butterflies.

There is a lovely chalk garden area (don’t miss the wall of white roses in spring) with benches to sit and appreciate the gardens and a pond, which attracts Dragonflies. These race around with a flash of colour and hover across the top of the water looking for prey.  Bees buzzing in the flower borders and birds singing in the trees or going about their duties, set the scene. There are wonderful photographic opportunities to be had.

My wife and I often take her mother Kath to the gardens as she is from a Kent gardening family back ground. She enjoys looking at the great variety of plants, flowers and trees and naming them. Mostly in Latin. Not bad for someone in her late 80’s.

The gardeners work really hard getting it to look its best. And there isn’t even an entrance fee, but I do recommend placing a donation in the post box on leaving to show your appreciation.

Highdown Flower & Bee

Discover more about Worthing...

Highdown Gardens

These beautiful chalk gardens are home to The National Plant Collection of the Plant Introductions of Sir Fredrick Stern - a unique collection of plants and trees, with many unusual plants to be discovered all year round.

Highdown Hill

An important archaeological site, located on the site of a late Bronze Age settlement and an early Iron Age hill-fort, Highdown Hill has some interesting archaeological finds. It is now a favourite dog walking spot for locals.

What's On

A wide range of events take place in Worthing all year round, whether along the promenade in the gardens, museum, theatres or live venues. With such a variety there is something for everyone, so begin your search now!

Family Friendly

Worthing is a town to reconnect as a family. There’s something for kids of all ages in Worthing; indoor or outdoor, whatever the weather, space to run, new activities to explore, challenges to be met. The beach and South Downs are both natural playgrounds with endless opportunities for fun to be had.