Things to do this winter

With the start of the new year, get out and do more with a visit to one of our palaces this winter.

With the start of the new year, get out and do more with a visit to one of our palaces this winter.

Boost your energy levels

Kick start your new year, by taking a revitalising walk with family or friends in Hillsborough Castle and Gardens or Hampton Court Palace gardens this winter. 

Getting daylight and fresh air during this time of year can help boost energy levels. There is plenty of space to explore and enjoy, with lots of wildlife and stunning scenery to see. 

At Hillsborough Castle and Gardens, pick up an activity sheet from the summer house and spot the all the animals living in the grounds.

Grab the wellies and wear layers on those colder days!

A general view of tall conifers in the Pinetum.
Photo of visitors enjoying Family activities at Hillsborough Castle

Activities to do together

Pick up a family trail at Hampton Court Palace or the Tower of London to explore the palaces together.

Taking part in the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch 2020? Try and spot some of our resident birds in a guided walk for families led by the RSPB in Hillsborough Castle’s grounds on Saturday 25 January, part of the Wonder Weekends for families.


View beautiful objects

See the Lost Dress of Elizabeth I, also known as the Bacton Altar Cloth, a rare survival of Elizabethan dress worn by Elizabeth I and the iconic Rainbow Portrait, on display in her former home until 23 February 2020.

New research and conservation by Historic Royal Palaces Curators believe that the Bacton Altar Cloth once formed part of a dress worn by Elizabeth herself.

Enjoy this and the rest of Hampton Court Palace for half price this winter. (07 January until 14 February 2020)

Buy Hampton Court Palace tickets
The Lost Dress of Elizabeth I exhibition, showing curator Eleri Lynn looking at the Bacton Altar Cloth in a case. The Rainbow Portrait hangs in the background of the green exhibition space.
The Privy Garden in winter, looking north across the fountain basin to the South Front of the palace.

Enjoy a garden history tour at Hampton Court Palace

Join an expert guide to discover the highlights of over 500 years of the history of the Hampton Court Palace gardens. Discover the Tudor beginnings of the Privy Garden and learn about Henry VIII’s favourite game at the Royal Tennis Court. A garden history tour is the ideal way to begin an afternoon exploring the gardens at your leisure.

Garden history tours take place on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays at 12.00.


Take in the views along the River Thames

Enjoy a winter walk along the River Thames and include a visit to the Tower of London.

View the sights from the top of the Battlements. Relax with a heartwarming lunch or treat yourself to tea and cake and enjoy the remarkable stories of the Tower.


Buy Tower of London tickets

Enjoy unlimited adventures at our six palaces

A family walk through the Lost Garden at Hillsborough Castle and Gardens. There are orange and yellow trees on the leaves in the background, surrounded by green and yellow autumn foliage.

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