Blooming Britain: gardens and stately homes to visit this spring

Towering country homes and soft, rolling hills are a quintessential part of Britain, and the grand stately homes that dot the island totally summarise the nation's pastoral side. Once the preserve of haughty heiresses and wealthy imperial figures, the UK's manor houses and their accompanying gardens can today be enjoyed by all, and we reckon that springtime is when they truly come alive.                                            

Blenheim Palace

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Blenheim Palace was built in the 18th century and served as the birthplace of Winston Churchill. Marvel at the gigantic 2,000-acre parkland that surrounds the estate, or get lost in Blenheim's beautiful gardens, all easily accessible for visitors taking advantage of our attraction break at The Oxford Belfry.      

Shakespeare's five houses

Dotted across Stratford-upon-Avon are five buildings that played host to William Shakespeare or his close family, providing visitors with an excellent view of the interior fashions and gardening styles of the Elizabethan era.

The town's historical haunts - Shakespeare's Birthplace, Hall's Croft, Shakespeare's Grave, Anne Hathaway's Cottage and Mary Arden's Farm - are a delight, especially when paired with one of our great two-night attraction breaks available at both The Stratford and Stratford Manor.

Castle Howard

Located in the beautiful Yorkshire countryside nearby QHotels' Aldwark Manor Golf and Spa Hotel, Castle Howard and its grounds once occupied a staggering 13,000 acres of space. Today, visitors must make do with 1,000 acres of parkland, pretty gardens and a majestic stately home that featured in the TV series Brideshead Revisited.

Osborne House

Designed by Prince Albert to be his Queen's summer retreat, this grand, Italian-influenced Isle of Wight location is a joy to visit. Grandiose rooms, wide-ranging collections and a set of gardens that burst into life over spring - it's easy to see how Osborne House was fit for royalty. The House is a wonderful day out for those staying at Norton Park.

Chatsworth House

If you're staying at the exquisite Tankersley Manor and fancy a day viewing beautiful treasures and historical artworks, make sure to head to Chatsworth House this spring. Situated near the River Derwent, this fancy home and its accompanying gardens are the perfect place to enjoy a sunny April day.

Woburn Abbey

Dating back to 1145, Woburn Abbey is one of Bedfordshire's finest examples of stately architecture. In spring, the house's gardens come alive, with lakes, a boulder garden, kitchen garden and richly-manicured conservatory all being open to the public. The house's art and antique collections are similarly opulent, featuring works that include Queen Elizabeth I's famous Armada Portrait.

If you're staying at The Oxford Belfry, there's no better place to spend a sunny Sunday this springtime.

Burghley House

Located near to QHotel's Belton Woods hotel in the Lincolnshire countryside, Burghley House's dreamy spires and expansive gardens make for a fine day out. Inside, detailed frescoes line the walls, while the Garden of Surprises is sure to delight visitors of all ages.

Woolbeding Gardens

Covering 26 acres, Woolbeding Gardens in West Sussex is a finely-crafted collection of natural splendours. Blooming flowers, foliage and neatly-pruned topiary, orchid collections, and classic English walled gardens make Woolbeding a joy in the spring, and visitors can easily lose themselves in the wooded glades and gardens.

                                 

The Hampshire Court Hotel is nearby, a perfect base from which to enjoy the jewels of the British countryside.

 

Audley End House and Gardens

The fabulous gardens of Essex's Audley End were designed by 'Capability' Brown, the much-lauded architect of a large portion of Britain's stately sceneries. Fountains and tulip blooms, a serene lake, and pretty garden buildings continue the exquisite flavour of the utterly elegant Jacobean mansion house. It's the perfect place to visit when paired with a stay at the nearby Cambridge Belfry.

Warwick Castle

Warwick Castle is a great place to enjoy a day with the family. The castle features lavish decorations and furnishings, as well as all sorts of medieval curiosities. In the gardens, beautiful lawns and woodlands can be explored, and there are all kinds of activities for kids - big and small - to get involved in.

QHotels guests wanting to visit the castle can take advantage of our attraction breaks - available at Chesford Grange and Stratford Manor - for a lovely family getaway.

Stately homes are part of the British country make-up - take a day or two this spring to truly appreciate these marvellous creations and their fine garden climes. Have you any favourite stately homes you'd like to visit this spring? We'd love to hear from you!

 

 

 

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