Hatfield House in Hertfordshire is full of Tudor history. Legend has it that it was in the grounds of Hatfield House that Elizabeth I discovered she was now Queen! The house itself is still lived in so it’s not open every day. Check out the website for opening times. Technically you can buy a ticket and return for free “for the rest of the season”. This isn’t actually an annual ticket – their season runs from the beginning for April until the end of September so if you don’t go for the first time until September you can make limited use of the offer.
The house is stunning and is regularly used for filming. If you watch many historical or costume dramas then the chances are you’ve seen something filmed here. The award winning “The Favourite” is just one of the films that were filmed here.
There are plenty of rooms that are still open and apparently the staircase is a feat of engineering; they still cannot figure out how it was done.
The gardens are massive and have various different areas. There is a large woodland, The River Lea, a tree that looks like an elephant (I couldn’t see it personally but that’s probably my fault) and a vast open space to explore and play in. In addition to this there are the formal gardens and old palace to explore. There is so much variety here, it was a fantastic day.
As part of the wider park estate there used to be Hatfield Farm Park and the Bloody Hollow. There was an additional charge for these however both have now been closed. The website says they’re consider what to replace these facilities with. I’ll update this review of Hatfield House once the details have been announced.
Access-wise it was very easy to get around with a pushchair.
Family ticket – £49. Prices correct 2020. For the latest prices please visit their website.
Hatfield House review update – due to covid-19 restrictions the pay once, return all season ticket has been suspended.
Parking / How to get there
Parking – On-site, ample and free
Address – Hatfield Park, Hatfield, Herts, AL9 5NB
On-site and very nice
There is a cafe. When I visited there was a real issue with under-staffing so it took ages to be served and the tables weren’t being cleaned. Picnics are allowed.
Our Hatfield House Review
I went a couple of times during the season but it is frustrating that the free return ticket is only for the season and not a year. We had a really nice time whenever we visited and it is a good family day out. However, I’m not sure about the value for money that is offered though. When you consider that somewhere like Blenheim Palace costs £69 for a family ticket and that gives you a full 12 months worth of free visits. Plus, the difference in family facilities offered is huge. If I had to choose then I’d definitely pick Blenheim over Hatfield every time.