Hampton Court Palace is a former royal palace in Hampton in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. It is about 12 miles (19 km) southwest and upstream of Central London and open to the public as a major tourist attraction. The palace gardens and nearby Bushy Park host the Hampton Court Flower Show annually.
With its 500 years of royal history Hampton Court Palace has something to offer everyone. Set in sixty acres of world famous gardens the Palace is a living tapestry of history from Henry VIII to George II. From the elegance of the recently restored eighteenth century Privy Garden to the domestic reality of the Tudor Kitchens visitors are taken back through the centuries to experience the Palace as it was when royalty was in residence.
Situated in beautiful tranquil surroundings on the banks of the River Thames, lies the jewel of our country's unique Royal heritage. Hampton Court Palace
spans over 400 years of history and was home to some of the great Kings and Queens of England, such as Henry VIII and King William III.
Many great Royal events and dramas took place within these walls, with each successive monarch leaving their own unmistakable influence on the Palace. The Great Hall and Chapel, built by Cardinal Wolsey, belong to Henry VIII's time. As you pass from room to room you will see sumptuous examples of decoration, furnishings and Renaissance paintings, which will leave a lasting impressions of the manner and style in which the Royals of the time lived.
Hampton Court Palace isn't just about looking, you can also smell, touch and hear history come to life. In the Tudor Kitchens you will find roaring log fires and biling cauldrons, as if in preparation for a great banquet.
Costumed guides will take you on tours through Henry VIII's Apartments via the magnificently hand painted King's Staircase. Sound guides will further enhance your experience, should you wish to wander freely around. The Georgian Court was shaken by the tales of scandal and you can hear every juicy detail.
With such a rich tapestry of history, encompassed in such stately surroundings, including sixty acres of Tudor, Baroque and Victorian gardens and the newly restored Privy Garden, Hampton Court Palace truly is Britain's most beautiful time capsule.
Oct - Mar. Mon. 1015 - 1630; Tues. - Sun. 0930 - 1630. Mar. - Oct.
Mon. 1015 - 1800; Tues. - Sun. 0930 - 1800. Sun. 0930 - 1800.
For details of admission charges, group rates and season tickets, please telephone 0871 560 9461
Hampton Court Palace web site
British Rail: From London Waterloo direct to Hampton Court, only 32 minutes.
Buses: 111, 131, 216, 461, 513, R68.