Exploring the UK: Hampton Court

Today we took the children to Hampton Court. This was Henry VIII’s favourite palace. It’s been described as his “pleasure palace” which, given what we know about the man himself, is a bit ick really.

“Excuse me, but you are dead.”
These photos were taken with a phone, so not great quality sorry.
I think the fact I apologised means I have been in the UK for too long.

We knew there would be parts of Hampton Court the kids would enjoy, as it’s known for being a great family attraction. To be honest though, we thought that if we wanted to see the palace properly, we’d be dragging them along with the promise of cake at the end.

We were wrong. They loved every minute.

Every time we’d enter a room, they’d do a little “wow!” There is a string of rooms, each with a throne at one end. As we walked from room to room, our son would go, “Wow, look! A throne!” Every time. Oh to have the enthusiasm of a 5 year old.

It was 12 degrees, and he was so hot we had to roll up his sleeves.
Right – we have definitely been in the UK for too long.

Five and three year olds can see the fun to be had in everything. A huge pot? “Look! A huge pot!” A big old bed? “Wow! A big old bed!” Jousting sticks? “Arghhhhhh!! Look!! Wow!! Long swordy things the knights had! Wow!”

“Cool! Cobblestones!”
“An old light! Look!”
“Look there’s a picture of a dragon / dog / another dragon / another dog!”
“A painting of the King’s friend! Wow!”
“A statue! Look, I can stand still too! Look! Look! Did you see? You didn’t see, I’ll do it again… look, I can stand still too…!”

My favourite? “Wow! Look!  A window!”

The gardens are half the attraction, so in between seeing parts of the palace, we’d head outside. The paths are covered in pebbles, and it had been raining. When you are five or three, this is the makings of the best day of your life. “Wow, look! Pebbles! And a puddle! Wow!” Cue the next ten minutes of them putting pebbles in a puddle.

“Wow, look!  Fish!  Wow, look – another fish!”
“There’s a fountain over there!  WOW!”

Back in 1998, I went to Hampton Court and thought it was fantastic. I never imagined I’d be back again with a husband and two children. I’m just so happy I have.

“Wow, look! A blog!”

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