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Bowood House and Gardens

The Estate Office, Bowood, Calne, Wiltshire, SN11 0LZ
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Tel01249 812102

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating - 503 reviews503 reviews
Bowood House and Gardens
  • Bowood House and Gardens
  • Woodland Garden
  • Bowood Lake
  • Spring flowers at Bowood
  • Bowood House and Gardens
  • Bowood House and Gardens
  • Bowood House & Gardens
  • Bowood House & Gardens
  • Bowood House & Gardens
  • Bowood House & Gardens
  • Bowood House & Gardens Fountain

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BOWOOD House and Gardens opens between April and November every year and is open 7 days a week. Bowood is the magnificent family home of the Marquis and Marchioness of Lansdowne.

Begun c1720, the House was purchased by the 2nd Earl of Shelburne in 1754 and completed soon afterwards. Interesting rooms include Robert Adam's Library, the Laboratory where Dr Joseph Priestley discovered oxygen in 1774, and the Chapel that is still used for family services. On display within the numerous Exhibition Rooms are remarkable collections of family heirlooms and works of art built up over 250 years. These include Georgian costumes; Victoriana, Indiana and superb collections of watercolours, miniatures and jewellery. The pleasure grounds cover approximately 100 acres, with the formal gardens and terraces immediately around the house.

The House itself is set in the middle of Capability' Brown's grade 1 park. The upper terrace was designed by Sir Robert Smirk in 1818, the lower terrace by George Kennedy in 1851. The pleasure grounds, which form part of Capability Brown's grand design of 1760, contain an outstanding collection of trees and shrubs, all of which are labelled and can be identified with the aid of a tree guide. There are, within the collection, nine champions. The original plantings date back to the 1760's.

Bowood's separate Rhododendron Walks which are open late April to mid-June, depending on the flowering season are located almost 2 miles from the house. The third Marquis of Lansdowne began developing this woodland area in 1854. Almost thirty original hardy hybrid rhododendrons, which were thought to be extinct, have recently been discovered within the collection making it one of the earliest rhododendron gardens in the country.

Families love the amazing Adventure Playground, one of the most exciting playgrounds in Wiltshire. Bowood boasts a life-size pirate ship, aerial rope walks, giant slides and the famous Space Dive. There is an indoor Soft Play Palace for younger children and birthday party packages are available. The parkland provides ample space for games and picnics, the perfect location for children to burn off their endless energy.

Tractor Ted's Little Farm offers lots to enjoy inside and out for younger children: meet friendly farm animals and handle rabbits, guinea pigs and see chicks hatching. Outside children will enjoy the tractor track and diggers in the ball pit.

A calendar of events operates throughout the season with chances to see life size farm machinery and children's activities throughout the school holidays. See website for details.

The Treehouse is located at the entrance to the grounds, serving a selection of freshly made meals or delicious homemade cakes; Bowood provides an ideal family day out!

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Guide Prices

Ticket TypeTicket Tariff
Adult (17 and Over) - Adult£13.00 per ticket
Child (2-6 Years) - Child£8.00 per ticket
Family Day Ticket 1 (2 Adults & 1 Child) - Family£32.25 per ticket
Family Day Ticket 2 (2 adults & 2 Children) - Family£39.25 per ticket
Family Day Ticket 3 (2 adults & 3 Children) - Family£46.50 per ticket
Junior (7-12 Years) - Child£10.00 per ticket
Senior Citizen (60 years+) - Concession£11.00 per ticket
Young Adult (aged 13-16 Years) - Concession£11.00 per ticket

2019 Season Tickets are available for purchase, more information on the website.

Group rates (for groups of 20 or more) and season tickets are available. All visitors with disabilities and their carers/assistants are charged at half the normal admission rate.
Tickets allow access to Bowood House and Gardens, Adventure Playground and Tractor Ted’s Little Farm. The Rhododendron Walks will re-open in April 2019.

Map & Directions

Road Directions

Close to J17 of the M4. Nearest major road is A4. Between Chippenham and Calne turn into village of Derry Hill.

Public Transport Directions

Nearest station is Chippenham station. Need bus or taxi.



  • Guide Dogs Permitted
  • Parking Areas for Disabled Visitors
  • Ramp / Level Access
  • Toilets for Disabled Visitors


  • On-Site cafe/restaurant/catering - Licensed restaurant, for 80 max, coffee shop for 70 plus. Ice cream kiosk at certain times. (weekends and school holidays.)
  • Packed lunch available
  • Picnic area

Children & Infants

  • Childrens Play Area

Establishment Features

  • Dogs/pets NOT accepted
  • Event venue
  • Printed Material in Foreign Languages
  • Shop
  • Tea / Coffee Shop
  • Toilets
  • Wedding Venue

Key Features

  • In countryside
  • Indoor Attraction
  • Outdoor Attraction

Parking & Transport

  • Coach Parking
  • On site parking
  • Parking (free)

Payment Methods

  • American Express accepted
  • Groups Accepted - Pre-booking preferable if catering is required.
  • JCB (Japanese Corporate Banking) accepted
  • Maestro accepted
  • MasterCard accepted
  • Max group size - 999
  • Min group size - 20
  • Special group rates
  • TIC Staff Admitted Free
  • Visa accepted
  • Visa Debit accepted

Printed Material in Foreign Languages

  • Arabic printed material
  • Dutch printed material
  • French printed material
  • German printed material
  • Italian printed material
  • Japanese printed material
  • Spanish printed material

Target Markets

  • Family Fun
  • Marketed Towards Children
  • Marketed Towards Families
  • Marketed Towards Senior Citizens

Tours and Demonstrations

  • Educational Visits Accepted
  • Guided Tours Available for Groups
  • Guided Tours Available for Individuals

Travel & Trade

  • Group Discount
  • Packed lunches available

Opening Times

2019 (30 Mar 2019 - 3 Nov 2019)
Monday - Sunday11:00 - 18:00*

* Bowood House & Gardens is currently closed and will be reopening for their 2019 Season from 30th March – 3rd November 2018

Dates and times marked with a '*' are provisional and may be subject to change


  • Certificate of Excellence 2018

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating:

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Recent Reviews:

  • 2018_B
    Birmingham, United Kingdom
    Trip Type:
    Friends getaway
    Beautiful house and gardens
    5 of 5 stars
    Wednesday, 24th April 2019
    I’ve not been to bowood since I was a child and it’s still just how I remember it being, it’s still got the gorgeous grounds to walk round and the gardens at the house are still kept pristine. A... Read full review
  • Ian C
    London, United Kingdom
    Trip Type:
    An enjoyable Easter visit
    5 of 5 stars
    Sunday, 21st April 2019
    Bowood House, home of the Lansdowne family, was built in the 18th century with interiors by Robert Adam and landscaping by Capability Brown. The main part of the house was demolished in 1955 but the... Read full review
  • Guidofandango
    Swindon, United Kingdom
    Trip Type:
    Fantastic family day out
    5 of 5 stars
    Tuesday, 23rd April 2019
    Fantastic family day out especially when the weather is so great. The play park is safe and brilliant for kids to play and have fun. Lots of grass areas to sit and watch the kids but not enough... Read full review


  • Other Awards Self-assessed Accessibility Information 2019

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