Wrest Park – 18th-century French chateau in Bedfordshire

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A house that surprises you

I had never visited Wrest Park before until my mum, who has gone many times suggested we visit to take some photos for my June theme.

Wrest Park is an exceptional rarity – a magnificent house of the 1830s set in an outstanding restored garden landscape originating in the 17th century. The house itself is remarkable, a near-unique example of 19th-century English architecture following the style of an 18th-century French chateau. Its grounds are a glorious amalgam of three centuries of English garden design and contain one of the few remaining formal gardens of the early 18th century.

I wasn’t sure what to expect but from the photos, she had taken it looked beautiful. I wasn’t disappointed.

The thing I love most about Wrest Park is how much it surprises you. When you walk in, while you can see it a large house you can have no idea how really grand it is. It’s a house that reveals itself with each step and there is something rather beautiful and whimsical about that. It truly is a wonderful, delightful surprise with views that take your breath away.

When you walk through the house and come out of the back you are met with the most wonderful view across the gardens, the lake, and the hunting lodge beyond and turn around and look back at the house and you get to see such a majestic and beautiful site. In fact, everywhere you look there is a photo waiting to happen. And it’s not just that; it’s the things hiding in the woods, the things you get to see as you venture and explore off the beaten track, little gems that you often have all to yourself to pose in at your will. It’s a place where you can spend hours without realising as you explore all it offers. And just when you think it’s all over you catch a glimpse of the orangery and wish you had a long flowing dress you could twirl around in, but alas you don’t.

Wrest Park is a place you leave knowing that you will come back as it beckons you to explore and see more.

I can’t wait for my second visit.

wide angle photo of stately home