Tickets Now On Sale For Open Day At Portrack, The Garden Of Cosmic Speculation

Copyright R.B Photography

Tickets are now on sale for the very popular open day at the Portrack Garden of Cosmic Speculation near Dumfries in May 2019.

Date And Time

Sun, 5 May 2019

11:00 – 17:00 BST

This event always sells out very quickly and tickets are limited to see the forty major areas, gardens, bridges, landforms, sculpture, terraces, fences and architectural works.Adult Tickets are priced at £10.00 plus a booking fee of £1.67 per ticket, Children (Under 16) Tickets are free.

Covering 30 acres, The Garden of Cosmic Speculation, designed by Charles Jencks, uses nature to celebrate nature, both intellectually and through the senses, including the sense of humour. A water cascade of steps recounts the story of the universe; a terrace shows the distortion of space and time caused by a black hole; a “Quark Walk” takes the visitor on a journey to the smallest building blocks of matter and a series of landforms and lakes recall fractal geometry.

Organisers said “There is limited parking in the fields beside Portrack, so admission is via pre-paid ticket only. Please book your tickets online from 1 February at Eventbrite.
There will also be limited tickets available in person at the Midsteeple in Dumfries for local people with no internet access. Please check ticket availability as we expect this event to sell out.
Early entry before 11am will not be permitted and last entry is 4.30pm. We regret that there is no wheelchair access. Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times. Teas will be provided throughout the afternoon by The Usual Place, our local enterprise partner.
The Upper Nithsdale Youth Pipe Band will perform near the tea area at 1.30pm and 3pm (weather permitting). Please note that the garden is not open to the public at any other time during the year. Further information is on the Scotland’s Gardens Scheme website.


Holywood is one and a half miles off A76, five miles north of Dumfries.


Vehicle access is by a signed one-way system from the A76. Please follow signs and bear with us if it is slow on the single track lanes. Parking is in the fields 5-10 minute walk from the garden. Please use the WC facilities in the car park near the railway bridge before entering the garden.


Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres will receive 60% of the money raised at this opening. The net remaining will support Scotland’s Gardens Scheme beneficiaries (described more fully below).


Picnics are permitted but please take your rubbish with you when you leave.

Water, teas, coffees and scones will be available to buy on the day.

The Upper Nithsdale Youth Pipe Band will perform near the Tea area at approx 1.30pm and 3pm (weather permitting).


The greenhouses are currently being refurbished and so will not be open to the public during this year’s charity garden opening. The decorative exterior is still clearly visible.

The kitchen garden is also closed to public visitors during the Open Day. Please do not attempt to cross the lane to access it as this is the exit route for all vehicles leaving the garden.

Please be sure to wear appropriate footwear as the parking area ground can become very muddy.

The garden is NOT accessible by wheelchair, nor is it easy to navigate with a buggy. There are many areas without defined pathways and the garden included small bridges over streams.

Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times.

Please contact the Scotlands Gardens Scheme office (0131 226 3714) for special access/parking instructions if you are arriving by bus/coach. Coaches will not be given access on the day except by previous arrangement and are required to park off site.


For further information about the garden see

For further information about the opening please contact Scotland’s Gardens Scheme at or 0131 226 3714.


What’s the refund policy?

This is a charity fundraising event and Scotland’s Gardens Scheme regrets refunds will not be issued under any circumstances.

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

Yes, all adults will need a ticket to enter the garden. Accompanied children under 16 will each need a children’s ticket. But importantly, you will not be able to park a car at the event without a CARPARK Pass. You can, however, be dropped off by a vehicle on the top lane by the main house.

Is my ticket transferrable?

Yes, however each ticket will be checked on entry and cannot be used by more than one person.

All Images Copyright DGWGO & R.B Photography