Visiting Mottisfont with your family

A family group walk across the south lawn in front of the house at Mottisfont, Hampshire

Read our hints and tips to help plan your family visit. There’s plenty of space to run, jump and play here, and always something for families to do at Mottisfont - in sun, rain and shade. Discover our new summer trail too.

A woman and child work out the puzzles on a trail sheet

Mottisfont's Sights & Sounds of Summer family trail

Mottisfont’s new Sights & Sounds of Summer family trail has loads of fun activities and sporting challenges to get stuck into, inspired by colourful Ladybird Book nature illustrations on show in the house and gardens. Test your agility on the ‘Beat the Osprey’ obstacle course, time yourself in the ‘Roe Deer Races’, or pretend to be a bat on Mottisfont’s ‘Hide and Sonar Seek’ game. There are wildflower seed bombs to make too, plus tips to help you design your own wildlife garden.

Hinton ampner 50 things have fun with sticks

Other family fun at Mottisfont

Wooden bridges and a rushing river means Mottisfont is one of the country's top destinations for playing pooh sticks one of the '50 things to do before you're 11 3/4.' Challenge your family to a game when you visit! From rolling down a hill to making friends with a bug, there's something for every young explorer to do at Mottisfont.

A hedgehog illustration from the Ladybird book 'What To Look For In Summer’

A British Summerscape: Mottisfont, Hampshire  

Discover original artworks and contemporary illustrations, from the Ladybird Books collection, spanning 60 years of Ladybird classics. Eighteen original watercolours from Ladybird’s 1950s and 1960s book series ‘What To Look For In Summer’ are on show for nature lovers to explore at Mottisfont this summer, offering a delightful new perspective on the world. Outside, in the gardens’ beech tree circle, a unique outdoor gallery space has been created to host local artist Natasha Durley’s vibrant digital illustrations for the new Ladybird edition of What to Look For In Summer. Opens 24 July 2021.

Hints and tips for a family visit

  • To avoid disappointment please book in advance, especially at busier times such as weekends and bank holidays. However, where space is available on weekdays, pre-booking may not always be necessary. If you do not book we cannot guarantee admission.
  • Free entry for under 5s.
  • Baby-changing facilities in access friendly toilets, located at the Welcome Centre and Stables.
  • Pushchairs welcome around the grounds. There are gently-sloping areas and wide pathways around much of the grounds which are suitable for pushchairs and little legs; pathways are muddy and uneven in some places so sturdy tyres are recommended.
  • The Coach House Café is open from 10am-3.45pm daily, serving takeaway hot and cold drinks, light snacks, lunches and cakes. Please note that we're only accepting card payments at the moment. There's a one-way system to the till point and a mask is required here, unless exempt.
  • Breast feeding welcome anywhere around the property.
  • Ball games and frisbees welcome, though please not on the formal lawns in front and behind the house, or in the walled rose gardens.
  • Bikes, scooters and trikes are not allowed anywhere on site, due to vehicles operating onsite at all times, unfenced waterways, gravelled paths and visitor feedback. We only allow toddler push-along bikes, operated at all times by a parent/guardian.
  • Areas of open water around the garden and grounds - close supervision strongly advised at all times.
  • Our climbing and water play areas remain closed. We haven't been able to carry out essential maintenance to these facilities over the past year, and we don't feel we can open them safely yet.
Girl sitting in a car boot at Ashridge, Herts

Please book ahead before visiting

We've introduced advance booking to keep everyone safe and maintain social distancing. To avoid disappointment please book in advance, especially at busier times such as weekends and bank holidays. However, where space is available on weekdays, pre-booking may not always be necessary. The House, Shop, Garden and Coach House Cafe and second hand bookshop are open. The car park and toilet facilities are also open. Please check opening times to find out opening hours for each area of the site.