Being National Trust members, we’re well acquainted with both Tatton Park, but also Knutsford and the many ice cream shops in the area. In this article, we’ll provide a deep dive look at one of our favourite country houses in the area. This lavish country estate, encompassing woodland, gardens, a grand mansion, and even a delightful farm, offers a fascinating glimpse into the affluent past, immersing visitors in a world brimming with cultural history, natural beauty, and vast collections of antiquities. Whether you’re a history buff, nature lover, or simply on the lookout for an amazing day out, Tatton Park is an engaging experience.
So, let’s journey through this charming estate and discover its many marvels.
- Where is Tatton Park?
- What are the Opening Hours of Tatton Park?
- What Attractions Can I Expect to See In Tatton Park?
- What Are the Prices for Entry?
- So Why Do We Love It So Much?
- And What About Refreshments?
- Are There Any Special Events or Festivals Held at Tatton Park Annually?
- RHS Tatton Park Flower Show
- So Get Down to Knutsford and Enjoy Yourself
Where is Tatton Park?
Tatton Park is an idyllic setting located in the North West of England, in Cheshire. Owned by the National Trust, the historic estate was once the home of the Egerton family and sprawls across over 1,000 acres of parkland, gardens, a farm, a deer park and a mansion house. It’s located just on the edge of Knutsford, part of the ‘Cheshire Triangle’ and you must definitely spend time driving slowly along some of the roads leading up to the estate, especially if coming from Manchester driving down Mereside (mansion) road. Be sure to keep an eye open for lime green Lamborghini’s and Rolls Royce and wonder what it’s like to live there!
Getting to Tatton Park in Knutsford, Cheshire
By car, there are signposts directing visitors to Tatton Park from the M56 motorway and Northwich. Follow the brown tourist signs – it’s well sign posted! Getting to Tatton Park from Stockport takes about 30 minutes and from central Manchester, it takes approximately 55 minutes.
Paying to Enter by Car
Although the house and gardens are managed by the National Trust, the wider Tatton Park parkland is managed by East Cheshire Council. This means that regardless of whether you have National Trust membership or not, you have to pay for entry to the grounds. At the time of writing the cost of entry by car is £9.50 per vehicle with blue badge holders eligible for a discounted £4.00 entry. However, if cycling or walking then entrance to the parkland is free. You can pay on the day, or in advance. However, once you have paid to get into the parkland, you don’t have to pay to park.
By Train the nearest railway station to Tatton Park is Knutsford. From the station, it is a walkable distance, but taxis are also available.
What are the Opening Hours of Tatton Park?
Open throughout the year, Tatton Park offers visitors a unique experience with a variety of activities and attractions.
Current opening times until (29 October 2023):
* Vehicle Parkland Entry: Open Daily 10am – 7pm (last entry 6pm)
* Gardens: Open Daily 10am – 6pm (last entry 5pm)
* Farm: Open Tuesday – Sunday 11am – 4pm (last entry 3pm)
* Mansion: Open Wednesday – Sunday 12:30pm – 4:30pm (last entry 3:30pm)
* Restaurant: Open Daily 10am – 4pm
* Shops: Open daily 11am – 5pm
Tatton Park is a great destination for families, offering something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing stroll or a fun-filled day out, Tatton Park is the perfect choice.
What Attractions Can I Expect to See In Tatton Park?
You could easily spend a whole weekend at Tatton Park even before considering all the special events that take place there. In fact, you could spend the whole day just at the adventure playground, although when we last visited in July, a number of the play areas were a little worse for wear!
The mansion is a historic country house, featuring a rich and varied interior of furniture, paintings and tapestries. There are over 50 acres of landscaped gardens to explore, including the enchanting Japanese Garden and a walled kitchen garden. Visitors can also explore the deer park and meet the resident animals. You can also visit the old estate’s farm which gives you a glimpse back into the past at ways that we once farmed.
Throughout the year, the estate also hosts a range of events, from the world famous RHS Tatton Park show in July through to foodie weekends, a 10k run and special events for Easter, Christmas and Halloween.
We always tend to combine a visit to Tatton Park, either with a trip to the Seven Sisters’ Ice Cream farm on the edge of Knutsford or the Real Fruit Creamery in Knutsford – which is one of our most favourite ice cream shops in the area (the Sorrento Lemon Ripple is delightful!).
What Are the Prices for Entry?
As explained earlier, if you are planning to go to Tatton Park by car and park up then you will have to pay a fee, regardless of whether you have National Trust Membership or not. The parkland is immense so it is reasonable to facilitate its ongoing conservation. However, even with membership, you don’t get any discounted entry. However, if you walk or cycle in, then there is no charge. However, if your destination is the house, then it is quite a long walk from Knutsford.
If you wish to enter the house, gardens or farm then you will have to pay additional entrance fees. Obviously, with National Trust membership, entrance is free to all of these. If you don’t have membership, then you can choose which attractions you wish to visit. The price for each individual attraction is as follows:
So Why Do We Love It So Much?
Nothing beats getting out into the countryside! One thing that we have found since moving up to Manchester is that when the weather is good, the whole of Manchester descends upon the few green areas near the city, such as the Edge at Alderley Edge and the honeypots of the Peak District like Castleton. Tatton Park is absolutely immense. It’s one of the few spaces that is so big that you don’t feel so crowded out. However, as with everywhere around Manchester, make sure you get out there early in the day.
Aside from that, the attractions are great. We haven’t really been able to enjoy the house with both kids. Recently Mila has enjoyed visiting Lyme Park House – especially dressing up as an 18th century Earls daughter, but it’s still a little too much for Sam. However, we have been able to enjoy the farm and the gardens, and of course the adventure play area and vintage fairground rides.
Tatton Park Farm
If you’ve had your Weetabix then make sure you walk down to the farm. It is a good 15-minute walk from the car park. If the walk feels a bit ambitious then there is a land train that takes you to the farm. It costs £1 per person, each way. Once at the farm, you can transport yourself back to farming techniques before the Second World War.
Chickens roam freely and it’s possible to view piglets in the original pigsties. There are deer in a large enclosure and another free-play discovery adventure course at the back. It’s definitely great to explore, especially if you have NT membership. If you don’t and you’re paying specifically to visit the farm, with the current cost of living pressures, then you may feel as if it’s not best value, depending upon your personal situation.
Tatton Park Gardens
We’re keen gardeners with a keen interest in growing fruits and vegetables. So it’s no surprise the gardens are a huge hit, the kids love seeing the fruit and veg at different stages of growth and we love exploring heirloom varieties of apples and pears to name but a few!
Once away from the kitchen garden, there’s some lovely landscaped grassland with views across the wider parkland. The kids really can run freely and safely. There are often a variety of trails put up by the National Trust. Last time we visited in July there was a ‘Tiger that Came for Tea’ trail. This adds a little more interest for kids. It was also great for Mila as it really encouraged and engaged her with her reading!
And What About Refreshments?
As always, the National Trust has you well covered with both a restaurant in the old stables, a cafe and a teashop. We got there early the last time we visited and had breakfast, which was a first. Needless to say, the breakfast was decent and at a good price.
If you’re not keen on sitting down and looking for something more on the go, then there are some burger sellers and ice cream vans outside the grounds of the house next to the adventure playground.
Are There Any Special Events or Festivals Held at Tatton Park Annually?
Every summer, the Annual Foodie Festival takes place in this picturesque setting, attracting food lovers from all over the region. Perhaps to rival its neighbour Dunham Massey, from 2023 there will be a Glittering Winter Garden Adventure during November and December.
And of course, in July there is the world famous Royal Horticultural (RHS) Tatton Park Flower Show
RHS Tatton Park Flower Show
The RHS Tatton Park Flower Show is one of the most renowned horticultural events in the UK. Taking place annually, the show brings together the best of the best in the horticultural world and offers visitors a truly spectacular sight. From the breathtaking displays of plants, floral designs and innovative garden designs, to the wide variety of activities and entertainment such as live music, craft workshops and children’s activities, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Not to mention, the array of top quality nurseries, garden centres and craft stalls to explore.
RHS Tatton Park Flower Show is the perfect day out for anyone with a passion for plants and gardens. With the amount of different sights, sounds, activities and stalls to explore, it is sure to be an unforgettable experience and one that will leave you inspired and in awe of the power of nature. We last visited in 2016 when we were kidless, but will be returning in the next year or two.
So Get Down to Knutsford and Enjoy Yourself
Here is an expanded call to action:
Step back in time and into nature’s embrace at Tatton Park. Wander through fragrant gardens, ramble across lush parklands, and explore a grand historic mansion. Let the kids run wild at the adventure playground before meeting the resident animals at the traditional farm. With something for everyone, immerse your family in this charming country estate that brings history to life. Discover Tatton Park’s natural beauty, fascinating heritage, and family fun. Plan your perfect country day out today.