In May of 2017, I took a long awaited vacation to the UK to visit my sister and attend a blogging conference in London. These posts are my diary of a fantastic trip. I covered a lot of ground and I must say, came home quite exhausted and ready for another vacation. I will link all current posts from this trip at the bottom of this post.
If you are making plans to visit the United Kingdom, and don’t know where to start, I suggest visiting and exploring National Trust properties. Before my visit, I had never heard of The National Trust. My sister is a member and she has explored many of the properties. She knows that I love history and old buildings, so it was easy for her to create an agenda for my stay without having to travel far away from her home.
The National Trust is a charity that relies on donations through membership. The Trust preserves England’s heritage and looks after places throughout England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It restores, protects and opens these special properties up to the public.
- 775 miles of coastline
- Over 248,000 hectares of land
- Over 500 historic houses, castles, ancient monuments gardens and parks and nature reserves.
You can pay for admittance to each property individually but if you plan on visiting quite a few like I did, you should consider purchasing a membership. It has its benefits! Admission and parking to all the properties is free for members. Plus, you can take advantage of free visiting arrangements with 14 similar heritage organizations in other countries! Now that’s a deal!
Conversely, if you become a member of a national trust in your home country, you will receive the same benefits. Becoming a member helps preserve your own country’s heritage and gives you the opportunity to explore and learn where you live as well.
Here are the links for more information and about becoming a member:
A Visit To Petworth House, My National Trust Properties Vacation
After arriving in the UK and spending the first day trying to adjust to the time change, we hit the ground running by visiting a property not too far away from where I was staying. Petworth House in the parish of Petworth, West Sussex. It is a late 17th-century, baroque style, country house nestled in the South Downs. For centuries it was the southern home for the Percy family, Earls of Northumberland.
You can discover Petworth’s rich and varied history on your own or by guided tour. Be sure to look for the volunteers in every room who are ready to answer questions. There are also pre-printed information sheets in every room that share all the details about pieces in the room as well as what each room was used for.
You will be in awe as you stroll through state rooms saturated with internationally important paintings by artists such as Van Dyck, Reynolds, Titian, Blake and Turner as well as many classical and neo-classical sculptures.
Head down to the servants’ quarters for a glimpse of life ‘below stairs’. In the kitchen we were greeted with fresh lemonade and lemon tarts. They were scrumptious! Be sure to handle some of the cookwear that is allowed. You will be shocked by the weight.
And you best wear your walking shoes because there is 700 acres around the house to explore. Petworth has a deer park, which contains the largest herd of fallow deer in England and a large pond.
For more information about Petworth House, visit the National Trust site here.
My other UK visit posts:
Recommended Products: (The following are affiliate links(see full disclosure here) and I will be receive compensation if you purchase.)
National Trust Handbook 2017
Houses of the National Trust
Road Trip Planner: Vacation Planner & Travel Journal / Diary for 4 Trips, with Checklists, Itinerary & more [ Softback * Large (8″ x 10″)