I must admit living in England has its benefits and even though you don’t get the best weather you have some of the most scenic countryside’s and Royal estates at your doorstep. The National Trust which is an independent charity and membership organisation for environmental and heritage conservation in England, Scotland and Wales is your passport to some of the best kept secrets in the UK. It works to preserve and protect historic places and spaces forever, for everyone.
One such jewel in the portfolio of the National Trust is Wadesdon Mannor. A magnificent country home and Estate surrounded by the Oxfordshire countryside and the Chilterns Hills. Waddesdon is just a short train ride away from the hustle and bustle of London and an ideal place to relax in the English countryside. Waddesdon Manor and gardens are owned by the National Trust following James de Rothschild’s death in 1957. The Rothschild Foundation (a charitable trust) now manage the property. Being part of the National Trust property, means members can enjoy the benefits that come with the membership.
Waddesdon Manor is easily accessible by both public and private transport. If you are getting here by public transport trains run direct to Aylesbury and Aylesbury Vale Parkway from London Marylebone. There are free shuttle buses in the summer from Aylesbury Vale Parkway station to Waddesdon Manor or else you can take a cab. By car it is just under 2 hour drive from London. Enter the following post code on your Sat Nav HP18 0JH. You reach the central parking area where you can hop on to a coach which transports you around to the various parts of the Estate.
Waddesdon is quite close to the Bicester Village Shopping Outlet so if you are a shopaholic then you can always make a quick stop and get some great bargains.
Waddesdon Manor is a country house designed like a French Chateau in the village of Waddesdon, in Buckinghamshire. It was built by Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild in 1874 to entertain some of his guests from around the world and house his collection of fine art. It houses a large collection of art from the eighteenth century around the French revolution and is a great place to visit if you are an art lover. One of the most precious collection outside of France which includes the Tableaux de la Révolution, a series of art work which portray key moments of the French revolution including the storming of the Bastille and the executions of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette.
The Manor was opened to the public in 1957 and is managed by The Rothschild Foundation, a family charitable trust, on behalf of the National Trust. It is now visited by over 350,000 guests every year who come here to admire the precious art collection or simply enjoy the beautiful gardens of the Estate and make it a fun day out for the entire family.
The main attractions of Waddeson Manor is the collection of the 18th century French paintings and decorative art pieces.
The Manor has also created a digital version of the art which is available free for academics and wider public to view from anywhere in the world.
The Manor has been visited by some of the most influential and popular celebrities and heads of state including the Monarchy. There are various trees planted around the estate by these visitors and there is an impressive display showcasing them do this.
If you are not a massive Art lover then you can enjoy the painstakingly restored Victorian gardens that go all around the house. There are 2 beautiful fountains at each end of the manor house which are picture perfect and a great shot for any photographer.
If that was not enough there is a large aviary just behind the manor house which houses some exotic birds in the surrounded by well-manicured gardens and a fountain in the middle of the aviary. You can easily spend the day wandering around the manicured gardens that act as the perfect backdrop to the manor house whilst the kids can enjoy the playground.
The Wine Cellars.
There is something for everyone in at Waddesdon Manor. If you love your wine there is no better place than the Cellars. The Wine Cellars were built in 1994 to celebrate the Rothschild’s families association with with some of the finest wines in the world. The cellar houses more than 10,000 bottles of wine stored in the vaults documenting for over 150 years of the family’s ownership of two of the most famous Bordeaux vineyards, Château Mouton Rothschild and Château Lafite Rothschild. You can sample a few wines in the shop or take home some of the best bottled specially for the manor shop.
The Silent Space
Originally designed as a pleasure ground for guests that were staying at the Manor, the gardens have a few areas that provide moments of calm. There is a Silent Space that can be found just beyond the Aviary. The perfect place to relax and soak in the very impressive natural beauty around you on one of the benches. Here you can get some beautiful views Aylesbury Vale. Amidst all the flora and fauna you can always hear the chirping of the birds and see some of them fly over you showing off their colourful wings.
Eat and Drink
After walking around the house and gardens you can choose from either the formal dining facility at the Manor house to the more relaxed ambience of the café /restaurant at the Stables. Set within the Old Servants’ Hall the Manor Restaurant offers a full menu with options for breakfast, lunches, and the traditional British afternoon teas. You can always grab a quick bite to eat from the cafe dotted around the stable area or sample some homemade produce including cakes and ice creams from the restaurant and food-to-go outlets.
Whether you want to marvel over the impressive art collection within the Manor or simply enjoy the immaculately laid Victorian gardens Waddesdon has something for everyone, but with the sun shining you could not ask for a more beautiful surrounding and a absolutely stunning day out with the family. From the extensive collection of paintings from the 18th-century to the exquisite Dutch furniture the Manor houses some the best of its kind on exhibition to the public.
So if you are looking for a great day out with the family or just by yourself I could not think of a better place to escape and enjoy the grandeur of the Waddesdon Manor and its immaculate landscaped gardens.