Taking a trip to London this March. I really want to go to Hampton Court. I would like to know if it should be a daytrip unto itself or just a morning or afternoon. I know the train ride is only about 30 minutes long. I just want to make the most of my time and well...I guess I am overplanning every single minute...lol...
I really enjoyed Hampton Court, I was lucky enough to be driven there by a friend though so our schedule was flexible.
I thought a few hours there was enough, it isn't huge, and unfortunately , even though it was July, it was cold and rainy so we couldn't enjoy the gardens or the maze. We did go for lunch at a nearby pub though! Still all in all , its only a half day trip.
I've been to Hampton Court 3 times, and absolutely love it! Getting there and touring it can take up most of a day. You'd really be pushing it trying to do it in half a day, and wouldn't have time to really see the whole thing.
There is a cafeteria in the old kitchen which is a fun place to eat. You might plan on having lunch there. There is a maze on the grounds which can take 30 - 60 minutes, but my then 9 year old loved it. The gardens are really nice if you are going in spring or summer.
FYI it's about a 5 - 10 minute walk from the train station. Have Fun!!!
If you're going to Hampton Court why not do something a little out of the ordinary ? There is river transportation from Westminster Millenium Pier to Hampton Court and it's a great way to see a different side of London. The first boat leaves at 10.30 in the morning and doesn't get there until early afternoon so it's not an ideal way to get to Hampton Court, instead I'd take the bus or the tube. Coming back however it works really well. You leave Hampton Court at 5.00 in the afternoon and arrive at Westminster around 8.00 in the evening. It's a great way to finish a great day out and you get to see a part of London most visitors never see.
Jill I agree if one is takng public transport the day is going to be used up, but as I said, the building itself does not take a day two or three hours max,, I was drive there so did not count that time.
Boy, has this brought back the memories. I was lucky enough to travel to Hampton Court by boat. It's been over 35 years, but I remember the trip, the palace, the maze, and the great tea that we had on the boat on the way back to London. I remember walking into the palace and thinking that these are the same places that Henry VIII walked. Have a wonderful trip.
We did the train trip last July. It's definitely a day trip. I think half a day would be rushing it. If I recall, it opens at 10 am, and we caught the train from Waterloo. The walk from the train station to the ticket office is 10-15 minutes. We loved the gardens and the maze and took the tour with the costumed docents (actors) for the upstairs and did the audio tour for the kitchen area. Had lunch at the restaurant in the castle. If I recall, with all that, we didn't get out back to the train station until 3 or 4.
Have fun! We liked Hampton Court better than Windsor Castle.
Go to www.hrp.org.uk for information on Historic Royal Palaces. You can buy tickets to several palaces, tour books (to read ahead of your visit). Etc.
If I remember correctly, you can buy a combo ticket at Hampton COurt that also covers admission to the Tower of London.
That will let you skip to LONG line at the ticket booth at the tower.