magical gateAlthough I was born in Leeds and we’ve now lived in Leeds for nearly 4 years after many years in London, we are still discovering new happy-making places in this beautiful part of the world for all the family. We appeared to find ourselves in a real-time fairytale (Peter’s photos here are some of my all time favorites yet).

Beningbrough Hall

Enter Beningbrough Hall– This National Trust owned baroque Italian Palace created by John Bourchier which is perfectly positioned in glorious Yorkshire between York, Harrogate and Leeds…Embellished with National Portrait loaned pieces, currently featuring the British Royal family in their display ‘Royal: then and now’, exhibitions change and are focused on people who have made and are making British history and culture.


Children are most welcome and made to feel that way too, with dedicated play rooms  and interactive galleries bursting with floor jigsaws, magic mirrors and sculptures adorned with ‘touch me signs’ seamlessly weaving art with play for little people.

interactive galleries


magic mirrorsLifts offer easy access to the floors too and staff couldn’t have been more kind, placing our buggy in storage and offering insight into the history of the property and what we could expect.

Our highlight was heading out into the grounds where we discovered a working walled garden so magical, we named it the secret garden, sweeping lawns and the prettiest of play areas enveloped by trees that danced in the last of the afternoon light brimming with wooden horses, slides, swings, climbing frames and even a fort.

Wooden horse

horse play




play time

brotherly loveslide timeI adored the sweet touches of scooters, bicycles and tricycles left in opportune spots along the paths and by the house so little people could scoot along and discover the views, playgrounds and hidden wildlife with ease.


The strong, loving bond between my sons has never been more evident. It makes my heart melt.

Big brother pushes younger brother in a tricycle

The day couldn’t have been more perfect.


The boys even picked up these squiggly worms for pennies in the gift shop!

playing with toy worms

We paid £15.95 for a family ticket, the price for entry to the whole property in winter.

Stunning Yorkshire viewA romantic, captivating palace, accessible and child-friendly, our time there was utterly uplifting and fun. We left feeling soothed somehow, the effect of the Italian inspired mansion had swept over us, the fresh air was invigorating and we simply can’t wait to return.

Linking up to Coombe Mill‘s Country Kids.

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63 Responses

  1. North East Family Fun

    We enjoyed a child free ‘date day’ at Beningbrough hall last year when their Royal portrait exhibition was on. I absolutely loved it!

  2. HPMcQ

    looks like a great place and absolutely love your eldest sons hair. we’ve had to cut ronnies a little to toe the line at school, otherwise his would be the same. fab shots, and have made a note for next year as we are coming your way for a holiday!

  3. You Baby Me Mummy

    This looks awesome! How amazing that children are so well catered for. It is stunning, as are your photo’s. Such cute boys. Thanks for linking to #PointShoot x

  4. Heledd

    This looks like lovely family day out. Beautiful pictures of your boys honey xx

    Would love you to join in with my new linky #MyCapturedMoment on Thursday!!

  5. Hurrah For Gin

    Wow what an amazing looking place! Your family make it look even more gorgeous of course 🙂
    Happy New Year to you all by the way i’m not sure i’ve had a chance to wish you it yet – been so busy lately. Much love xxx

  6. Joy

    This looks like such a fun place and so surprised at the low price too! The pictures are beautiful

  7. Tinuke

    How beautiful! Lovely photographs as always. I MUST book a train up soon and explore some of the places you mention in the blog V!

  8. Laura Evelyn Bee

    This place looks lovely and completely agree you have captured some gorgeous photos!
    I love when children can get interactive with things rather than just looking around, as my daughter is now a toddler this really is a must for us now!! x

    • honestmum

      Thanks Laura, my husband took these stunning photos, I agree so great to get the children participating as much as possible x

  9. Katie / Pouting In Heels

    Gosh, it sounds heavenly! And seeing as it’s probably not too far from where I live either, I really must pay it a visit. Stunning photos too darling. I LOVE walled gardens, in fact one of the main things I loved about our house when we came to view it was the fact it has a wonderful red brick wall at the back of our garden! Reminds me of ‘The Secret Garden’ book which I adored as as child. Gorgeous post xxx

    • honestmum

      Oh I loved that book too and the film! Ooh must come visit one day, bet it wonderful when the sun is out. You must visit Beningbrough Hall, we had the most perfect day there x

  10. JoyandPops

    We live in York and Beningbrough is one of our favourite places – we’ve spent some lovely family days there in all weathers (the cafe does an amazing hot chocolate for colder days after the park!).
    Seeing your lovely pictures has reminded me we’re due a visit ourselves!

  11. Franki ~ Little Luca & Me

    We’ve never been here and it’s not somewhere that’s really been on my radar, but seeing your photos and hearing all the positive things you have to say about it has made me want to go. Looks absolutely gorgeous x

  12. Sophie Lovett

    This place looks amazing, and not just because of the stunning pics! I love how fantastically well it seems to have been set up for kids. We have a National Trust membership that we really haven’t used enough this winter – we definitely need to get out and see what’s around, though Beningbrough Hall might be a bit far for us… X

  13. Amber

    My goodness, those pics of your big boy on the wooden horse are to DIE for. The light is just divine! And you’ve captured the brotherly relationship really well – these pictures make me feel really excited about having two boys.

    • honestmum

      Thanks so much, my husband took these shots and I think they might just be my all time favourites. I adore having two boys, their bond and mine and Peter’s with them is incredible. Thanks for your lovely comment x

  14. Kiran at Mummy Says

    Oh Vicki it looks absolutely beautiful. What a gorgeous location and you are so lucky to live nearby. The boys look so relaxed and happy – and the photos are amazing. I need to put this on my list of places to go! x

    • honestmum

      Thanks so much Kiran, you guys would love it here and please if you visit, let me know so we can all hang out together xx

  15. Mel

    The photos are stunning. No wonder they are some of your favourite photos taken by your other half. I particularly love those shots of the boys on their bikes, and the landscape picture taken at dusk. I really hope I can take photos of my little ones that look half as good as that one day. xxx

    • honestmum

      Thanks so much darling Mel, I want to frame them all, it was one of our happiest days, we’re always most content out in the fresh air. Your photos are always stunning x

  16. Donna

    Oh this place looks fantastic, I love finding new places to explore and the boys look like they are having a great time. The adventure castle looks amazing! x

  17. Ebabee

    Absolutely breathtaking photos. And the place does look incredible. Love, love, love the shimmering light captured in some of the pics. Just beautiful x

    • honestmum

      Thanks so much, Peter is just gifted behind the camera, he captured the day perfectly. I think it might have been the most magical day we’ve all had. Thanks for your lovely words x

  18. Coombemill

    What a delightful place, so great to see children made to feel so welcome and I love the look of the secret garden. wonderful photos as always. Hope this one will be on Country Kids tomorrow.

  19. Alex Bump to Baby

    Oh my, it looks and sounds absolutely wonderful there and it’s so lovely that it’s so welcoming to children! I really want to visit York, I’m hoping to this year in fact. x

    • honestmum

      It is such a haven for big and little people Alex, you will love it! Let me know if you visit, we live nearby, be lovely to see you again x

  20. Natalie Ray

    Wow, fab photos! We love national trust properties. We invested in an annual membership, it is such a cost effective way of having regular fun days out and all the sites are great for visiting with children.xx

  21. Jini

    Love this part of England. I did my Masters at University of Leeds and lived there for over a year.Loved every minute of it. Lots of memories for hubby and I 🙂 I’ve promised the kids that I will take them to see where mummy and daddy started dating! This post will be useful for when I take them up there during June half-term break.

    • honestmum

      Thanks so lovely Jini, we live in Leeds and love it. I got a place at Leeds uni too but opted to go to London, nowhere feels more like home than here though, thanks for your lovely comment!


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