See Blenheim Palace’s grounds in grand style

Capability Brown Carriage Rides at Blenheim Palace
Capability Brown Carriage Rides at Blenheim Palace

Visitors to Blenheim Palace can now enjoy the historic site in a new yet traditional way – by horse and carriage.

Blenheim Palace was one of Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown’s most significant landscape projects. Commissioned by the fourth Duke of Marlborough in 1763, he spent a total of 11 years transforming the palace’s landscaped parkland which, although appearing quite natural, is “contrived to pleasing effect”.

And now there’s a chance to tour the grounds as Capability Brown did centuries ago. The carriage rides last about 15 minutes and take in some of the quintessential Brownian views.

Alongside the rides, visitors can discover the new Capability Brown Viewpoints Trail which has been created with panels highlighting many of his most impressive viewpoints across the estate. Visitors can explore the trail on foot by downloading a map from the Blenheim Palace website or picking up a leaflet at the Welcome Centre.

There is also a new temporary ‘Capability’ Brown exhibition featuring maps, plans, paintings, pictures, costumes and historic artefacts bringing the life of one of the world’s most illustrious landscape designers to life. Alongside specially-commissioned artworks featuring his most celebrated views, the exhibition also features drawings of the lake and dam under construction as well as a film by modern gardener Diarmuid Gavin reflecting on the influence of Brown’s work at Blenheim Palace.

The rides are on April 30 and 31, May 1 and 2, July 9 and 10, August 19 and 21 and September 17 to 18. Visit blenheimpalace.com for more.