Visiting Kingston Lacy: what you need to know

Kingston Lacy house in Dorset

We're looking forward to welcoming you back. The parkland, garden, takeaway cafe, shop and toilets are now open. The ground and state floors in the house are open but with limited availability. To ensure the safety of our visitors, staff, volunteers and local communities, we've reduced the number of people we can welcome at one time and you’ll need to book your visit in advance. In this article you’ll find everything you need to know about what's open and what to expect from your visit.

In this article:

 Arrival and parking 

When arriving at Kingston Lacy please have your ticket ready to show our staff either on your phone or a printed copy. If you’re a member, you’ll also need to show your membership card. You'll be asked to show these at Visitor Reception after parking.  

In order to maintain social distancing, please arrive within your timeslot. Sadly, if you're more than 10 minutes late, we won’t be able to guarantee you entry. Your entry will be at the discretion of the property staff and will be based on visitor numbers and the ability to maintain social distancing.

We have a large car park at Kingston Lacy, so there is plenty to space to park away from others. We have designated blue badge holder parking close to Visitor Reception. 

Campervans that are used for transport are welcome but are not permitted to stay overnight. At this time we’re unable to welcome caravans and coaches.

There is no limit to the amount of time you can spend at Kingston Lacy during your visit.   

Staying safe

The safety of our staff, volunteers and visitors is our priority. Look out for signs while you’re here which will explain any changes to how you can access different parts of the site. 

To help keep everyone safe, please follow social distancing and government guidance when you visit. If you’re showing any of the symptoms of coronavirus, or if you've been in contact with anyone that has the virus in the last 14 days, please don’t visit. 

In line with government guidance visitors to our house, shop and cafe are required to wear a face covering. Please bring one along with you.

What's open?

The parkland, garden, takeaway cafe, shop and toilets are now open. The ground and state floors in the house are open everyday but due to limits on capacity, it may not be possible for everyone to access the house during their visit. To ensure the safety of visitors, the Kitchen Garden including the play area remains closed until further notice. We’re working hard to get these open as soon as it is safe to do so. You will need to wear a face covering when visiting the house, shop or cafe. 

Bringing a dog? 

Dogs are welcome in all outdoor areas with the exception of the formal garden, immediately behind the house. Assistance dogs are welcome in all areas. Dog friendly routes are clearly signed from arrival to help you make the most of your visit. We do ask that you keep your four-legged friend on a lead at all times.

Exploring the garden

The garden is looking lovely, but it won’t be quite as you’re used to seeing it. We’ve had almost no gardeners at the property for many weeks, while everyone stayed home and stayed safe.

We have a small team in now, but nowhere near what we’re used to, so the garden isn't perhaps as well-groomed as you might be expecting. There are some weeds and rough edges; please bear with us as we do what we can as soon as we can, and instead enjoy all the many other pleasures that our garden has to offer.

Exploring the house

We are delighted to open the magnificent State and Ground Floors in the house at Kingston Lacy everyday from 11am – 4pm with last entry at 3.30pm. These rooms offer lavish interiors and display some of the most reknowned artworks in the Bankes collection. The bedroom and attic floors will remain closed until further notice. Your pre-booked timed entry ticket provides access to the garden and parkland. If you would like to visit the house, please check availability on arrival.

To keep you safe we have introduced a one-way route through the house and hand sanitising gel will be made available on entry and exit. We are also limiting the number of people who can access the house at any one time. Due to limits on capacity, it may not be possible for everyone to access the house during their visit. 

In line with government guidance visitors to our house are required to wear a face covering. Please bring one along with you.

By visiting the house you are helping us to develop a new experience that can be used to open more places that you love. Thank you for your support.


Reopening the house at Kingston Lacy: What you need to know

Planning a trip to see the house at Kingston Lacy? Join us on a video tour to find out what has changed since we reopened the Ground and State Floors of the house.


Most of the new garden route follows hard-standing paths which are wheelchair and pushchair friendly. However, one stretch of path is grass, and may become muddy following heavy rain. Please check with staff on arrival if you have any concerns. We have added extra seating along new parts of the route to offer you a place to rest along the way.

There is a shorter garden route for those less able to manage longer distances - this is clearly signed. This route does contain a few small steps and is therefore not wheelchair accessible.

We are sorry but we are unable to offer our mobility scooters or buggy service at this time.

Visitors wishing to view the State floor of the house will need to climb flights of stairs. The
ground floor of the house is accessible to wheelchair users where visitors can experience the house in 360° on a touch screen virtual tour.

Book your tickets

How to book

All visitors must book a ticket in advance, including members. Entry and parking is free for members, but please bring your membership card with you. Non-members will need to pay in advance.

  • Please book one ticket per person, except for children aged 5 or under as they don’t need a ticket.
  • You’ll need to choose a 30-minute arrival time for the day you want to visit.
  • The timeslot is for your arrival time only 
  • Tickets are for your use only and are not available for resale
  • We'll send your booking confirmation by email. Please make sure you fill in your correct email address when you book to ensure you receive your confirmation email.

Every Friday we'll release new bookings for visits the following week. You can book up to 18 hours before a timeslot. 

Due to limited spaces, we’re asking that you only book once a week to allow others a chance to visit.

Upcoming events

Timed entry to Kingston Lacy garden and parkland (21 Sept - 27 Sept)

Tue 22 Sep 2020
Book your timed entry to visit Kingston Lacy garden and parkland. The house is open daily with limited availability on a first-come-first-served basis – please check availability on arrival.