Osborne House, Isle of Wight
Osborne House was Queen Victoria's holiday home by the sea, where she spent many happy times with Prince Albert and their nine children. The house provides an insight into how the Royal family lived, also the history of the Royal family and their links throughout the world.
Osborne's beautiful gardens feature fountains, formal terraced gardens, a summerhouse, the Swiss Cottage, where the royal children learnt domestic skills and the Museum where you can see items collected from all over the Brisith Empire. Queen Victoria's private beach has also been recently opened to the public.
Osborne House offers a great day out on the Isle of Wight, with plenty to see and do in the 342 acres of extensive grounds. The house itself includes the Royal Apartments, with their splendid drawing and dining rooms and the ornate Durbar room. There's also the chance to see the family's private rooms.
From the terrace of the house, there's a magnificent view down the formal terraces set against the background of the Solent. Stroll around the grounds and take in the views or, for the less energetic, take the free minibus to the Swiss Cottage.
The gardens are a particular feature at Osborne House. As well as the formal gardens and terraces, there's also the walled garden where a huge variety of flowering plants and fruit. The glasshouses are full of more tender varieties of plants such as begonias, fuchsias and pelargoniums.
For more about the gardens, visit our Osborne gardens section.
Built for the princes and prinesses, Swiss Cottage is about 20 minutes walk from the main house, or a free minibus is also provided. This was where the Royal children learnt a variety of domestic skills, such as cooking and growing vegetables.
The Swiss Cottage Museum houses a whole host of items collected from all over the British Empire. From architectural relics, to stuffed animals and the royal children's collections, there's quite a range of things to see.
Osborne House is run by English Heritage. To learn more about the House and for visiting times and prices, visit http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/properties/osborne-house/