Deconstructing a Hampton Court Palace Tour
A visit to Hampton Court Palace can be baffling for those who are unfamiliar with England’s history, i.e. most travelers, but with a self-guided tour of the palace, gardens and royal chambers, among other parts of the palace, you can truly experience this iconic monument to England’s monarchy and its reign. With Hampton Court Palace and Garden Entrance Tickets, you can visit Henry VIII’s State Apartments, Chapel Royal, the palace’s celebrated art gallery with works from icons like Rembrandt and van Dyck, and the popular maze.
The tickets are all-encompassing and you need only be open to the possibility of an immersive experience to make the most of your time at Hampton Court Palace. The tickets include entrance to the palace and its gardens as well as an audio guide that is perfect for visitors who prefer to take their time getting acquainted with a place. Instead of having to follow a group of strangers and a tour guide, you can tour the palace at your own pace without any rush.
The tour begins at the entrance of Hampton Court. You have two, entirely distinct and yet, eerily similar, palaces – the Tudor palace and baroque palace, following which you can pay a visit to the King’s apartments. The tour ends in the 60-acres of lush, vibrant, and thriving gardens that were the King’s pride and joy. The world’s oldest maze resides in the garden, definitely not for those with a weak sense of direction. The palace is like a history book come alive and you can expect many an interesting tale about Henry and his successors etched within its walls.
Hampton Court Gardens
The most striking feature of Hampton Court is its Royal Gardens that are designed over 60 acres of gardens and 750 acres of parkland. Running along the river Thames, the Court Gardens are home to the Great Fountain Garden, commissioned by William III, the Privy Garden, and Orangery that was the pride and joy of Mary II. A vast tapestry of herbaceous plants and tall trees, the gardens have various varieties of trees bearing fruits, flower bulbs, and even a kitchen garden that served fruits, vegetables, and herbs to the Tudor Kitchens. This is also where you will the Great Grape Vine, the longest-surviving of its kind in England. Pond Gardens, wildlife, and other arresting features await at the Court Gardens. The Court Gardens are a sight unlike any other and cannot be missed.
Why You Must Visit The Hampton Court Gardens
- The Court Gardens bring to life the joy of Henry VIII, William III and Mary II, and all the royals of the court who had a green thumb.
- You will find the Great Maze in the Gardens as well, the most-popular attraction at Hampton
- The Great Fountain Garden was designed on the behest of William III with yew trees by head gardener, Capability Brown, head gardener.
- Privy Gardens were recreated by William III as well, a systematically-designed area of the land that is now restored based on accurate historical data.
- The Boardwalk that runs along the Gardens is the longest herbaceous flower border at 580m.
Duration of Visit
Visitors can spend anywhere from 1 to 3 hours visiting the Court Gardens.
Entry is free with palace access and the East-Front Gardens are also free access every day between 9:00 am to 10:00 am.
Hampton Court Maze
The Hampton Court Maze was designed during the occupation of William III at his command. It is the UK’s longest-surviving hedge maze that is over 400-years old and remains as one of the most-popular attractions at Hampton Court. The trapezoid design is replete with befuddling twists and turns that will render you directionless within minutes.
The Maze has stood the test of time and is the most famous maze in the world.
The original maze was created with hornbeam that was later replaced with yew trees. The Court Maze is a puzzle maze that makes for an excellent adventure activity for everyone. The Maze was designed as part of a project titled ‘Wilderness’ that was commissioned by Willian III who reveled in the symmetry of the landscape and the wonderment afforded by the puzzling nature of the maze itself.
Why You Must Visit The Hampton Court Gardens
- A fun and exhilarating adventure awaits anyone who dares to enter the Hampton Court Maze.
- With its winding twists and labyrinthine design, there is no right way to approach the puzzle.
- The Maze is a part of the Palace that is truly private, owing to the tall trees and inability to see through the hedges.
- Another great thing about the Maze is the unmatched beauty of the surrounding garden in the spring when millions of flower bulbs are in full bloom.
- The Maze is a fun activity for the entire family where the kids can run around without a worry as they try to reach the center.
Duration of Visit
If you do it right, the maze can be conquered in its entirety in not more than 20-minutes.
Entry to the Maze is free with access tickets to the Hampton Court Palace. However, you can even purchase maze-only tickets that are available for purchase on-site.
Family*: £13.00 (2 adults + 3 children)
Under 5s: Free
1. Audio Guide
Visitors with a Palace ticket are privy to a free audio guide that you can collect from the Information Center, Base Court. The audio guide is multilingual and you can choose from languages like English, French, Italian, Dutch, German, and many Asian languages as well. The audio tours are catered to different visitors including families, individuals, and groups. It is a fun way to build your own tour by learning about the palace while moving at your own pace.
2. Left Luggage
For a £1 fee, visitors can store cabin-sized luggage in the lockers at Clock Court buggy park at the Palace. For travelers, there are left luggage facilities at train stations, airports around London as well as other places such as shopping centers and Victoria Coach Station.
Hampton Court Palace is wired with free Wi-Fi and all you need to do is follow the on-screen instructions to connect to the internet.
4. Restrooms and Baby Changing Stations
There are restrooms available in the Base Court, Fountain Court, Tiltyard Café, Kitchen Gardens, and Business Reception. All restrooms are accessible to visitors with disabilities. Baby Changing stations are installed in the restrooms are Base Court and Tiltyard Café.