Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire is the only non Royal palace in the UK. It was given a a gift to the Duke of Marlborough by Queen Anne, for his victory against the French in 1704, crushing Louis XIV’s ambition to rule Europe. John Vanbrugh was appointed to design and build it, but this was delayed for a few years due to problems with the contract.
Blenheim Palace grounds were created between 1764 and 1774. The view across the Queen Pool has been described as ‘the finest view in England’. Enter through the Woodstock Gate to be hit by this spectacular view immediately. The bridge across the Queen Pool was built containing rooms, but they have never been used.
Our day at the palace was purely spectacular. Val and I spent around an hour exploring the inside of the palace and around 2 hours in the gardens and the grounds.
How to get to Blenheim Palace
You can get to Blenheim Palace easily from Oxford on the S3 bus to Woodstock. The bus goes from outside the Theatre on George Street, Oxford.
Tips for a fantastic day at Blenheim Palace
- Enter through the Woodstock Gate to avoid crowds and be greeted by the spectacular view of the Queen Pool.
- Queue at the Kiosk in the courtyard to get your photograph taken and day pass upgraded into to an annual pass for free.
- You can pay £5 extra to become a privilege card holder – this will give you a 15% in the cafe, restaurant and gift shop.
- Pay the extra money for the buggy ride around the grounds – it’s well worth it.
- When you are inside the palace, make sure you look out of the window in the library to get an amazing view of the palace gardens.
- Avoid going when there is an event on as it can get very crowded (unless it is something specific that you want to attend).Avoid going when there is an event on as it can get very crowded (unless it is something specific that you want to attend).
- There is a butterfly house that contains over 100 species.
Where to Eat at Blenheim Palace
- Have a meal in the cafe overlooking the terrace fountains or take a picnic if the weather is sunny.
- Avoid going when there is an event on as it can get very crowded (unless it is something specific that you want to attend).
- For special occasions you can book to have a meal in the Indian rooms.
- If you prefer to explore Woodstock, and eat in the town instead of the Palace, I recommend The Blenheim Buttery Inn. They do a lovely afternoon tea with homemade cake!
Where to stay near Blenheim Palace…
- Disabled guests can get a carer in for free.
- Mobility scooters are available to hire with a £10 deposit.
- Blue badge holders can park right by the palace entrance.
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If you enjoyed this blog, check out my photos taken Inside Blenheim Palace.