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Blenheim Palace

Blenheim Palace, Woodstock, Oxfordshire, OX20 1UL

A 20-minute drive from the centre of Oxford is Europe’s second largest stately home, which gives Versailles a run for its money. You could easily spend a full day here looking around the house, taking a long walk to a monument which bears a strange resemblance to Nelson’s column, or hurtling with the kids around the maze (impressively it's the world's second-largest hedge maze), adventure playground and butterfly house. Other summer activities include rowing on the grand lake, trout fishing and or exploring the endless grounds (the entire estate is over 2000 acres, much of it landscaped by Capability Brown). For a winter’s day, or when it’s rainy, the interior hosts a permanent exhibition on Winston Churchill (who was born here), guided tours of the stately rooms and a cosy café serving practically-aristocratic afternoon tea. There’s a reduced entry fee for gardens only. Make time to explore the village of Woodstock too – you won’t be disappointed.

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