Monday 21 February 2011

Oh The Places You'll Go: Blenheim Palace

When I first moved, my husband would whisk me away to various places most weekends, showing me the most beautiful stately homes, well manicured parks and gardens, quaint pubs and historical places.  I am convinced that he did this "sell" England to me and convince me I'd made the right choice by moving here.  Kind of like "yes, I know there is no garbage disposal, but there are stately homes on every corner. Does that count for anything?"

Luckily, he hasnt given up on these field trips and with the Spring and Summer months approaching, I thought I'd begin a new series - "Oh The Places You'll Go"  (do kids read Dr. Suess in the UK?) and show you some of the gems (some hidden, some not) in England.

Last weekend, we went on an impromtu day trip to Oxford and our friendly sat-nav informed us that Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of Winston Churchill was not far and could be added to our route.  Why thank you; dont mind if we do...

Blenheim Palace
More of the Palace

The Palace from the Formal Gardens

..and again 

One of many disturbing statues... 

...and another

What We Discovered:

  • You can get married there (yes, please!)
  • The Palace is an example of English Baroque style architecture.  I've never had a favourite architectural style before, so now this is it.  Absolutely beautiful!
  •  The Palace was created to celebrate victory over the French during the Wars of the Spanish Succession and was a gift to the First Duke of Marlborough.
  • Blenheim Natural Mineral Water is bottled on the estate, and is the only water you can buy there, of course.  Tastes just like Aquafina to me.
  • Duke John George Vanderbilt Henry Spencer-Churchill lives in the palace part of the year. In addition to being in the Churchill family, he is also a distant relative of Princess Diana.
  • Scenes from Harry Potter and Gulliver's Travels were filmed here.


  1. My cousin Daisy manages the Blenheim shops (I think they have several gift shops) and does all their buying ... yet I've still never been there!

  2. My dog's official color is called Blenheim (white/brown) because the king that lived there paid more attention to his little Cavalier King Charles Spaniels than he did to official business. So we have been meaning to take a trip there. Plus my kids are always up for Harry Potter trips :) XOL

  3. Excuse me? Scenes from Harry Potter!!!!....I must see said place, if time allows??

  4. Harry Potter has been filmed all over the place...You could spend a whole week looking for Harry Potter filming locations, but probably wouldnt recognize any of them in their current form other than Alnwick Castle (which is way up North and we are defintely not going there) I dont think we will have time to go to Oxfordshire and they charge you an arm and a leg to get into this place just to look around.

  5. Inside, places are absolutely recognizable. Totally worth handing over that arm & leg :-)

  6. Don't encourage her. Its too far in a boring direction!