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Hampton Court Palace and Gardens

Description

When visiting Hampton Court Palace you are actually visiting two palaces in one; a Tudor palace magnificently developed by Cardinal Wolsey and later Henry VIII, alongside a baroque palace built by William III and Mary II.

The first buildings at Hampton were acquired by the Knights Hospitallers Of St John Jerusalem in 1236 but Henry VIII remains the Palace's most prolific occupant and by the time Henry was finished with his renovations the palace was one the of the most modern, sophisticated and magnificent in England.

Sir Christopher Wren, under instruction of William III developed the 'second' part of the palace in the late 1600's and transformed the east and south facades of Hampton Court with the grand and elegant baroque exteriors that dominate the Formal gardens today.

When visiting Hampton Court do not miss the Tudor Kitchens - a living monument to 230 years of royal cooking. The kitchens were designed to feed at least 600 people twice a day and are still regularly used to prepare Tudor meals.

Hampton Court also boasts amazing gardens; the park covers 750 acres, the formal gardens 60 acres and the actual palace buildings 6 acres. Do not miss the restored Privy Garden and the famous Maze!