Woburn Abbey deer park is one of the largest conservation parks in Europe, with over ten species of deer and 3,000 acres of land. Arriving at the gates of the Abbey, you are welcomed by herds of deer which roam freely around the parkland. They are impressive and well looked after animals, and you can stop to watch and admire them all over the parkland.
As you make your way around the deer park you will come across Woburn Abbey gardens. The gardens are famous for their creativity and have been unique and captivating to their visitors ever since the famous landscape gardener, Humphrey Repton, began his work on these grounds hundreds of years ago. Walking around the glorious gardens and ponds you will see a mixture of gardening and art. The garden trail covers 22 acres, and has boards informing you about the inspiration and history behind each garden. Picnic benches are scattered around the parkland, where you can view the gardens whilst having a spot of lunch.
Wondering around the grounds you will eventually come across some spectacular and historic buildings. The main building is Woburn Abbey itself, where you can purchase a ticket to explore the luxurious rooms inside and learn about its long and fascinating history. The Abbey covers three floors and is worth a look inside, however the exterior is also breathtaking as soon as you see it. Inside is one of the most important private art collections in the world. Paintings by Cuyp, Gainsborough, Reynolds, Van Dyck and Canaletto bring many visitors to the Abbey to view their magnificent work. Admire the furniture, paintings and architecture as you walk through each of the Abbey and immerse yourself in the history of its previous owners. Tour booklets, children's quizzes and activities are also available so the whole family can make the most of the experience.
If you wish, you can even take a look around the antique centre next to the Abbey and marvel at some of the unusual antiques which have been collected since 1600 AD. To look around the whole of the Abbey you will need several hours, so it is important that you plan your day ahead.
If you would like to dine in style at the Abbey, then you can enjoy an afternoon tea in the Duchess' Tea Room. To avoid disappointment it is best to pre-book, as afternoon tea here is very popular for special occasions. You will be offered a selection of teas, cakes and sandwiches for £12.50. This is perfect for a mothers day present, for a birthday or just for someone special. Throughout the year there are also a number of events held at the Abbey such as craft fairs, contemporary sculpture exhibitions, open air theatre performances, and the Woburn Abbey Garden Show. Ensure that you plan your day ahead if you would like to attend any of these events or if you would like to avoid the crowds. During your visit you may even see some weddings taking place. Woburn Abbey is a popular venue for weddings because of its magical setting and beautiful buildings. Wedding fairs are also held all year round at the Abbey. Further information on dates can been found on the website.
Woburn Abbey (along with its deer park and gardens) is an elegant, historic and enchanting place to visit. Tickets can be booked separately into the gardens and Abbey online in order for you to choose where you would like to spend your day. However, if you do find enough time, then try to visit all of the areas that there are to offer as it is something you will not want to miss out on.