Few things make for a more blessed family day out than a visit to a stately home. And stately homes are not just the preserve of the southern gentry. These hidden gems dot the North West’s countryside. Formerly the residences of great families, they have now been taken into the care of the National Trust or local charities and feature museums, art collections, gardens, and cafés. Great places to soak up history, they also make for a special weekend where you can let the kids off the leash to run around outside, and for adults to reconnect with nature in massive green spaces.
Explore our shortlist of the best stately homes in the North West
Whether it’s the Tudor charm of Bramall Hall you’re after, or the grandeur of an eighteenth-century palace like Harewood House, or haunted, craggy places like Muncaster, you’ll find our region is full of these places and they’re all within easy reach of main transport hubs and motorways. Many of them feature small zoos and aviaries, or put on special events like farmer’s markets and dressing up sessions.
You can also pair a visit to a stately home with a city break or walking holiday. Check out some of the Lake District establishments for stately homes easily incorporated into a hike. And whilst we’ve mentioned family trips, don’t overlook these places if you’re a couple looking for something to do on a romantic getaway or anniversary trip. You’ll feel like lords/ladies/others of the manor after a few hours promenading the hallways and formal gardens.
So, roll up the gravel drive, and explore our shortlist of the best stately homes in the North West.
Here are our picks
Chatsworth House in Derbyshire, Chatsworth House, Bakewell, Derbyshire, DE45 1PP - Visit now
Among the Peak District’s primary visitor destinations, Chatsworth House and its surrounding estate should not be missed by anyone with even the slightest interest in beautiful buildings and equally beautiful scenery.
Levens Hall, Levens Hall, Kendal, Cumbria, LA8 0PD - Visit now
A beautiful Elizabethan manor house, featuring the oldest surviving example of a topiary garden. The house and gardens are a joy to wander in, and the recently established Levens Kitchen provides delicious seasonal and local food.
Gawthorpe Hall, Burnley Road, Padiham,, near Burnley,, Lancashire,, BB12 8UA - Visit now
Affectionately referred to as the ‘Downton of the North’, Gawthorpe Hall was redesigned in the 1850s by Sir Charles Barry, designer of the Houses of Parliament and the ‘real’ Downton Abbey, Highclere Castle.
Eyam Hall, Eyam Hall & Courtyard, Eyam, Hope Valley, S32 5QW - Visit now
Derbyshire’s Eyam Hall is one of the few surviving examples of an unadulterated Jacobean grit-stone manor house. The striking building is set among a picturesque town which has grown up around it and beyond that lies picturesque countryside for fans of the outdoors.
Towneley Hall, Towneley Park, Burnley, BB11 3RQ - Visit now
Burnley’s Towneley Hall and Park is a treasure trove of architecture and art. And if you’re really lucky, you might spot the local boggart, a sinister paranormal entity supposed to appear once every seven years, prophesying the death of one of the hall’s occupants.