Magical mansions and gardens

Many of the beautiful houses and gardens we look after are imbued with a magic that you’d normally only find in the pages of a fairytale. There are fascinating stories just waiting for you and your family to uncover on your next day out. From mansions that are guarded by dragons, to gardens where princesses once played, visit one of these places and you’ll find plenty to feed your imagination – whether you’re young or young-at-heart.

Children playing in the garden at Hardwick Hall, Derbyshire

Explore the magical garden at Hardwick Hall

How long will it take the kids to discover the secret fairy house in the gardens at Hardwick Hall, Derbyshire? They'll love looking inside this magical world.

Children playing in the rain outside Ightham Mote, Kent

Explore the magical garden at Ightham Mote

Ightham Mote, Kent, has a curly wurly tree and goblin’s grotto in its gardens, which children love investigating. The house is charming too – perfect to discover on a rainy day.

Visitors on the Iron Bridge at Cragside, Northumberland.

Explore the magical garden at Cragside

Can you and the kids find your way to the middle of Nelly’s Labyrinth? Named after a reputed local witch, it’s just one of the highlights of a trip to Cragside, Northumberland.

Little girl with binoculars

Explore the magical Waddesdon Manor

Fairy tale fans will be in their element at Waddesdon Manor in Buckinghamshire. Can the children find Sleeping Beauty? Don’t miss the woodland playground in the gardens.

The Bear's Hut at Killerton, Devon

Explore magical Killerton 

If you think the children would enjoy a day finding out about dragons, a bear hut and an extinct volcano, visit Killerton in Devon. It’s full of legends just waiting to be uncovered.

Playing outside the Thatched Cottage at Claremont Landscape Garden, Surrey

Explore the magical Claremont Landscape Garden 

Claremont Landscape Garden in Surrey was once a place for young royals to play. Let your little princes and princesses continue the tradition when you visit.

The Yew walk at Antony in the mist

Explore the magical Antony House, Cornwall 

Walk in Alice’s footsteps through the magical house and gardens of Antony House, Cornwall. This is where Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderful film was shot. Don’t miss discovering Antony’s history too.

Children looking at a concrete garden sculpture at Mount Stewart

Explore the magical gardens of Mount Stewart 

The gardens of Mount Stewart in County Down are some of the most unusual in our care. Discover dinosaur statues, go animal spotting and meet the legendary white stag.

Young girl climbing a tree in Bodnant Garden

Explore the magical Bodnant Garden 

Bodnant Garden in Conway, Wales, is known throughout the world for its stunning collection of plants. Explore the grounds with your family on the plant-hunter discovery trail.

A girl makes a daisy chain in spring

Great things to do at our mansions and gardens 

While you're out exploring our gardens you could also complete lots of our 50 things to do before you're 11 ¾ activities too, from rolling down a really big hill to going on a walk barefoot or even creating some wild art.