Parc del Laberint – Barcelona, Spain
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This royal estate is home to the oldest garden in Barcelona, created in 1792 by an Italian engineer named Domenico Bagutti. The highlight of the gorgeous 55-hectare manicured grounds is the two-metre high cypress hedge maze. The aim of the exercise is romance: there is a statue of Eros, the Greek god of love, at its centre. Image credit: Modes Rodriguez (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Longleat Hedge Maze – Wiltshire, England
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Made up of 2.7 kilometres of yew trees – about 16,000 of them – the largest hedge maze in England can take between 20 and 90 minutes to complete. It was added in 1975 to the Elizabethan estate of Longleat, which includes other mazes as well as a safari park.
Hampton Court Palace Maze – Surrey, England
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This impressive hedge maze has the honour of being the oldest in the United Kingdom, having been commissioned by William III of Orange in the early 17th century. It’s of a type called a multicursal or puzzle maze, and it’s full of twists, turns and dead ends.
Reignac-sur-Indre Maze – Indre-et-Loire, France
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This seasonal maze in the Loire Valley emerges every summer. Made from either sunflowers or corn, it covers four hectares. It’s harvested each autumn and planted in a new, circular pattern each year. Image credit: YannarthusBertrand2.org
Villa Pisani Maze – Stra, Italy
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If you’re after a challenge, consider this high-walled maze in the historic Venetian doge’s Villa Pisani: it’s said to have even stumped Napoleon Bonaparte. Win out in the end and you can ascend the pretty tower that is at its centre.
Ashcombe Maze & Lavender Gardens – Shoreham, Australia
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The uniquely curved shapes of this evergreen hedge maze, planted with Monterey cypress, require regular grooming to maintain their rounded edges. There’s also the Lavender Labyrinth on the site south of Melbourne, planted with more than 40 fragrant varieties.
The Dole Plantation Pineapple Garden Maze – Wahiawa, Hawaii
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Shaped like a pineapple, this maze has more than four kilometres of paths lined with 14,000 plants – including pineapple, of course. The Dole Plantation is the former home of James Dole, an American industrialist who developed the pineapple industry in Hawaii. Visitors can take a tour on the Pineapple Express train and try a delicious Dole Whip soft-serve pineapple ice cream.
Penpont Maze – Brecon Beacons, Wales
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Guests of Penpont House, a private home dating back to 1666, will discover a large maze on the grounds in the shape of the pagan symbol of the Green Man. Its owners commissioned local artist David Goff Eveleigh to complete the maze, to celebrate the millennium.
The Tangled Maze – Springmount, Australia
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The beautiful botanical maze in central Victoria is two metres tall and changes seasonally – it’s planted with thousands of different climbing roses and other flowering plants including wisteria, jasmine and honeysuckle.
Richardson Adventure Farm Maze – Spring Grove, United States
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This massive corn maze is one of the largest in the world and is redesigned every year based around themes such as Star Trek and the Beatles. This year, the maze covers more than 11 hectares and celebrates the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series in 2016.
Schönbrunn Palace Maze – Vienna, Austria
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More than one hundred years after the original 1720 maze was cleared, a new maze was established in the Schönbrunn Palace grounds in 1999. Based on the original and laid out with yew hedges, the maze covers more than 1715 square metres.
Labirinto della Masone – Fontanellato, Italy
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Covering almost nine hectares, this bamboo maze is the brainchild of publisher Franco Maria Ricci, 80, who harboured the dream for years before creating the star-shaped labyrinth in a space adjoining his home. Several different species make up the 200,000 plants used in the maze.
Andrássy Castle Maze – Tiszadob, Hungary
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This impressive castle and surrounding grounds was reopened in 2015 after a multi-million-dollar refurbishment. The boxwood maze here is dotted with yew trees and looks like an enormous squid when viewed from above. Image credit: Andrassy Facebook
Castlewellan Peace Maze – County Down, Northern Ireland
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This maze was created in 2000 to acknowledge the signing of the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland two years earlier. More than 6000 yew trees make up the maze, planted by people from all over the country. Those who complete the maze can ring the Peace Bell at the centre. Image credit: Kenneth Know (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Glendurgan Garden Maze – Cornwall, England
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Set in the well-kept subtropical gardens of Glendurgan run by the National Trust, this cherry laurel maze was originally planted by Sarah and Alfred Fox in 1833 for the amusement of their 12 children. There’s a thatched summerhouse at its centre. Image credit: Skinnyde (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
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