Blenheim Palace sits eight miles from the historic city of Oxford, and is one of England’s largest and most beautiful houses. Although Blenheim holds the title of palace, it has never been a royal residence, although it is the birthplace and ancestral home of one of the most recognisable figures of British history—Sir Winston Churchill.
Built in English Baroque style, the palace is considered to be a masterpiece of 18th century architecture, and has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The estate nestles among 2000 acres of ‘Capability’ Brown designed parkland, which is home to formal gardens, an adventure playground, a hedge maze, a butterfly garden and a large fishing lake.
A tour through Blenheim Palace is an unforgettable experience. Explore the magnificent State Rooms, hung with tapestries and portraits, and filed with exquisite furniture. Learn all about the life of the ‘Greatest Briton’ Winston Churchill, in a permanent exhibition featuring photographs, letters and personal possessions. Journey back in time and discover Blenheim’s past, in the Untold Story, an interactive experience exploring 300 years of rich history.
Away from the State and Public rooms, you’ll find additional tours investigating life behind the scenes at Blenheim. Take the Upstairs Tour and find out which illustrious guests stayed in the luxurious bedrooms. Take a peek at life in service with the Downstairs Tour, or wander through the richly appointed private apartments of the Duke of Marlborough in the palace’s East Wing, with The Duke’s Floor Tour.
When you feel ready for refreshments, you can choose from brunch or afternoon tea in the orangery, sandwiches, cakes and beverages from the Oxfordshire Pantry, light meals at the Water Terrace café, and pizza, ice cream, soups and salads from the Pleasure Gardens deli.
Blenheim’s gardens are magical. From the serene Water Terrace Garden and the peaceful Secret Garden, to the ornate Italian Garden, the fragrant Rose garden and the stunning Roundel Garden, the grounds at the palace hold something for everyone to marvel at.
To discover the history of the gardens you can join the free walking tour which sets off every day (weather permitting) at half past eleven.
Beyond the formal gardens lie trails for you to explore at your leisure. You can download trail guides before you visit or pick up maps at the visitors centre, and then set off to Walk In Churchill’s Footsteps and seek out his favourite places, follow the Lights, Camera, Action trail and find yourself in the shooting locations used in TV shows and blockbuster movies like Mission Impossible and Cinderella, or hit The Finest View In England trail to admire the landscape of ‘Capability’ Brown.
Events at Blenheim
Blenheim Palace hosts a wide range of events throughout the year. You can visit in the spring and catch the Jousting Tournament weekend, or take your youngsters along for Easter holiday fun. Summertime sees the palace host a food festival, the Blenheim Palace Triathlon, and Gifford’s circus, along with flower shows, car rallies, and classical music concerts.
When you purchase a ‘Palace, Parks and Garden’ ticket to Blenheim Palace you have the opportunity to convert your ticket to an annual pass at no extra cost. The pass then allows you to visit the house and grounds as often as you wish over the next 12 months.