Les Jardins du Château de Vullierens - Jardins des Iris (VD) | En
Updated: Sep 9, 2018
On Sunday afternoon we decided to head out again. I have seen lots of pictures on Instagram lately taken at Château de Vullierens which looked beautiful but I had assumed that walking around gardens wouldn’t be terribly enjoyable for the children. I did some further research and discovered that part of the grounds is made up of a wooded enchanted forest area. That was all the encouragement we needed so off we went.
The chateau is well signposted and there is plentiful parking out the front. It was fairly quiet when we arrived (you have to check their website as the opening hours change according to season and in summer it seems it is only open in the afternoons) so we parked easily and paid for our entry - CHF10 per adult and free for children up to the age of 11. You start the visit in a smart gift shop selling nice bags, candles etc and then pass through an area where they sell their own wine.
We had a gorgeous walk around the beautifully tended gardens and enjoyed looking at the incredible sculptures as we went (our favourite being a sort of enormous spherical wind chime which is one of the first things we saw when we started the visit).
We passed along the main path, detouring now and them to examine the gardens in closer detail or admire an artifact and eventually a long tree lined path which afforded us a break from the sun and offered a nice breeze, led us to Le Royaume du Roi Lézard.
Jude was already excited by the red cow sculpture at the entrance of the wood and raced off to find the first activity. I won’t spoil it by giving too much away but there were lots of hidden gems for the children to look for and the theme is based around elves and fairies which really captured the children's imaginations.
Jude has already started asking « is it real »? about everything but was captivated when we told him that the fairies become statues by day but come out to dance and sing when the sun goes down. It was lovely to see his excitement as he discovered the forest.
Once we had completed the circuit of the forest (it's not very big) we walked back along the main path veering off to the right to enjoy the views. Jude was tired by this time so Jean gave him the camera which perked him up as he tried to photograph the sculptures, butterflies and his sister!
We left through the shop again and stopped at the unisex toilets on the way out and were hugely surprised to find them modern and really clean with LED colour changing lights behind the toilets and touchless taps and dryer. There is also a small baby changing area provided.
We really enjoyed our afternoon at the chateau and had the impression there was lots more to discover. I gather there is a cafe which is open is the spring but not the summer, and that in autumn they are only open for a selection of weekends when they have food trucks on site. Picnics are forbidden on the grounds.
The best time to visit seems to be between the end of April and mid-June to visit as the famous iris gardens are in full bloom but we missed that this year unfortunately. As well as wine, they also sell a selection of their iris plants to grow at home and I see that you can also purchase these online www.jardindesiris.ch.
Parking : Yes
Toilets : Yes (very modern)
Baby Change Facilities : Yes
Accessibility : Yes suitable for pushchairs or wheelchairs
Website : https://jardindesiris.ch/