It seems like such a long time ago, nearly 4 weeks, that N started school.  I’d taken his first day off work in the hope of meeting friends who were in the same boat, to celebrate and commiserate, but it didn’t work out.  Friends were working, or had appointments booked in, or their children weren’t starting on the same day.

So I decided that I would go on a National Trust visit.  Last year we really made the most of our membership and blitzed lots of places, but since renewing we’ve only been to a couple.

I decided that I’d visit Packwood House in Warwickshire.  It’s only 30 minutes or so away, so I dropped N off at school, then headed north.  If I’d had the whole day free I’d have done Packwood House in the morning and revisited Baddesley Clinton in the afternoon (it’s only round the corner), but I knew I had to be back for school pick up.

picture frames at Packwood House cafe

I arrived just before the house and gardens opened, so headed for the kitchen café, which is beautifully done out, and serves amazing huge slices of cake.  It was packed with walkers, families and others, so I was straight out towards the house to try and avoid the rush for the house when it was open.

Packwood House from outside the gate

Oddly, the house is across the road, but it’s only a minute walk.  We waiting for the gates and doors to be opened, then the few of us made our way inside.

National Trust Packwood House

It so noticeable how slow having a young child with you makes things….apart from him rushing through when he gets bored.  I was able to look at what I wanted and take my time taking photos.

entrance hall at Packwoood house

Children always have something to do at National Trust properties, and at Packwood House they have a tea cup search which several children were doing.

flags in the great hall at Packwood House

I loved the white and blue patterned tile theme that the house used, taken from those in the bathroom.  As with many stately homes and mansions, Packwood has had royalty staying in the house, so there’s always interesting history to be heard.  The owner even built a ‘tudor’ extension which is an interesting addition.

a bedroom at Packwood House

The house isn’t massive so it didn’t take long to walk round.  It’s really the gardens that are the spectacular part.

water fountain and pond at Packwood House

garden at packwood house

packwood house gardens

It had been wet the night before, so the flowers were beautiful but coated in raindrops.  I’d only had my new macro lens delivered the Saturday before, so I was in my element trying out the new lens and looking for gorgeous shots.

water droplets

orange flower and raindrops

red raindropped flower

echinachea macro

purple flowers and bokeh

hoverfly on purple flower

yellow flower macro

 

And of course, Packwood House is pretty famous for its yew trees, an reason that I really must take N to see some time.

yew trees at packwood house

I then headed down to the lake to see the folly art installations.  Unfortunately the causeway footpath was closed for work being done, so I could only walk one way round, but walking through the orchards, by the lake and through the trees was still a nice walk.

folly at packwood house

hotch potch folly at Packwood House

the lake at Packwood House

The follies were a little odd, although they do look great in the setting.  Fun for children, who were enjoying both of them.

Returning back towards the house, I decided against getting lunch at Packwood House. The café was packed out, so I chose to have a wander round the kitchen garden instead.

kitchen garden growing plants

pretty kitchen garden

welly planters

kitchen garden at Packwood House

Gorgeous blooms, some interesting insect traps, and some children friendly displays and play areas.  You can tell how much work the gardening teams must put into the National Trust gardens to make them so fun, colourful and productive.

orange dahlia

purple poppies

wasp on a yellow flower

teddy bears picnic at PackWood house
Teddy Bears Picnic
Cinderella display
Cinderella’s carriage scene

champagne bottles display

I left having enjoyed Packwood House, and in particular the gardens, and made my way back to pick up N.  It did feel very odd not having him with me, and made me think about the next place I want to go and take him to explore.

Why not take a look at these similar posts.

waddesdon play   hidcote gardens   coughton court

37 Comments

  1. Wow, this place looks amazing! And your photos capture it perfectly. We have a few National Trust sites near us but haven’t visited any for a while. You’ve inspired me to choose one to visit soon 🙂

    • Thanks Kate. Yes do get there soon, many will be closing down for the winter dates soon. Worth getting to them for the Christmas displays though

  2. I love National Trust properties – we have a couple of great ones near us. This place looks amazing – but the teddy bears picnic looks a little, well, creepy!! Kaz

    • Ha ha, I know what you mean. It is a little odd, but did work quite well with the rest of the set up play area next to the table.

  3. I love your out and about posts.
    You guys go to the best places – I have added it to my LONG list of places to visit and take Hayden and the OH.
    I love how the grounds look really well kept.
    Charlotte x

    • Thanks Charlotte. I also have a huge list (mostly from reading blogs!). It’s finding the time to get to them, especially before N refuses to go which he’s starting to do now. He just wants to be on the farm Booo!.

  4. I’ve been to Warwickshire a few times as we have family there but haven’t visited Packwood house, it looks lovely certainly one I can add to my list for future visits! Who doesn’t love sneaking around a big old manor house? Xx

    • I guess get in there quick before it closes for the winter. I never know what to do with myself once national trust places all close down!

  5. Your photography is magnificent! These are the sorts of things I like doing when I am child-free, I especially agree about being able to take time with the pictures, it makes such a difference x

    • Aw thanks Amy, appreciate that. Photography definitely takes time, much harder when there’s a child trying to stop me from taking photos!

  6. Where is Packwood house located it is stunning I would love to use it for a photoshoot and of course to explore the stunning grounds. I have to commend your photography skills you have a true talent.

    • Oh thank you for the kind comments. It’s near Solihull, not far from Hatton Adventure World. It really would be perfect for a shoot.

  7. That place looks amazing!! The amount of detail that you managed to capture in your photos is unbelievable! Love it!

    • Thanks Anna. Appreciate your comment I’ve really been working on my photography this year, and have just got a new macro lens so loving playing with that

  8. What a lovely place to go and get some gorgeous photos and have a lovely day, especially on such an important day as your son starting school. I need to sort out National Trust membership!

  9. Anna Fraser

    What a wonderful place, It looks lovely … but I bet you felt really odd without a child following you around! I am still not used to it myself after my little boy started school.

    • It is strange not having him there when I have a day off, but most of the time I’m at work so it’s fine.

  10. This looks lovely, the gardens are gorgeous and your photography of the flowers is especially beautiful

  11. I love your flower photography, amazing shots! This sounds like an amazing way to spend a day – would be right up my street. Thinking of going to the UK just to do a tour of stately homes.

    • Thanks Nicci. A tour of stately homes would be amazing. I’ve pretty much exhausted all the ones near me, just a couple more to tick off!

  12. Sarah Golding

    What a lovely house and garden. I love being a National Trust member, we’ve started their children’s list of things they should do whilst young.

    • The 50 things challenge is great for kids. We’ve kind of started it, but even at 2.5 years old, being on a farm and outdoors, N had done a lot already so it felt a bit pointless. It’s great to check for ideas though if we want to do something different. Good luck with it.

  13. oh im so envious it must have been great to wander around child free although i bet you kept thinking you’d left him somewhere. Your pictures are amazing especially the flower ones, you must have a brill camera?

    • It did feel a bit strange, like he was missing out. I do love my camera – it’s a Panasonic lumix micro four thirds one, but I especially love my macro 90mm lens.

  14. Oh wow what a stunningly beautiful place to visit with your family. I adore the gardens and I really love the fun use of champagne bottles too!

    • They’re great aren’t they? Not normal wine bottle or Cava, but proper champagne!

  15. It looks lovely. You definitely shouldn’t have got all those beautiful flower pictures with a little one coming with you!

  16. Vikki Holness

    Oh i’m so jealous, this is on my list of places to visit and you’ve captured it beautifully. I have a “thing” for open houses and country estates, i think that’s down to me being nosey more than anything else, i just love looking seeing how the other half live! xxx

    • I’m like you. Love to have a nosy round, and admire them. Glad you enjoyed the post.

  17. Zoe Alicia

    Packwood House looks lovely! I must say that I am very taken with your close up pictures of the flowers in the gardens! I really want to try and take some photos like that. Good job x

  18. Claire Kane

    This looks amazing! I love places like this. It’s like stepping back in time.

  19. Oh I loved seeing this post on my Bloglovin feed – it’s on my list of places to visit and you have just cemented the fact I really need to go! Gorgeous photos x

    • Thanks Donna. Yep, the same, I kept seeing it on Iona’s blog, and finally got round to it. It’s all about the gardens really, so try and go before the winter.

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