The Pleasure Gardens
The Pleasure Gardens is the area at Blenheim Palace that is dedicated to families and is the perfect place for children to let off steam. The Pleasure Gardens can be reached by the miniature train, on foot, or there is a small car park. It is the perfect place for families to while away an hour or two, watching exotic butterflies, muddling around the Marlborough Maze or having fun in the Adventure Playground.
The narrow-gauge railway links the Palace to the Pleasure Gardens. A firm favourite with children and adults alike, the railway operates daily from February until October at half-hour intervals and at weekends only between November and December. The diesel locomotive, Sir Winston Churchill, pulls three canopied carriages and can reach a speed of 12 mph. *Please note that the train has a carriage with wheelchair access.
From the Palace - First train 11am and then on the hour and half hour, last train 5.10pm
Pleasure Gardens - First train 11.15am and then at quarter to the hour and quarter past the hour, last train 5.30pm
Please note that during busy times the train runs more frequently.
Please note: The train will not be running from 13th May - 24th May due to track maintenance.
The Marlborough Maze
The Marlborough Maze is the world's second largest symbolic hedge maze, designed to reflect the history and architecture of the Palace. The maze covers an area of just over an acre (0.4 hectare) and has two high wooden bridges which provide perfect vantage points. Within the maze area is a model of a Woodstock street, putting greens, as well as a giant chess and draughts set.
In the Butterfly House, exotic tropical butterflies can be seen in free flight. The special hatchery contains the pupae of many of the species, bred on site - so at Blenheim Palace, it's possible to study the full life-cycle. More exotic butterflies can be seen, depending on the season. The Monarch from North America, the Owl butterflies of Central and South America and the Heliconius butterflies, also from Central and South America.
Adventure Play Area
Children can let off steam in our Adventure Play Area which is situated within the Pleasure Gardens. The Adventure Play Area is a purpose built wooden play area including plank bridges to run across, ladders to climb, swings and slides to enjoy.
The Children's Shop
The Children's Shop stocks a range of exciting pocket-money toys and gifts inspired by the adjacent Butterfly House and Lavender Garden, as well as fancy dress costumes and Pick 'n' Mix sweets for an extra treat!
"Pottering About" Craft Studio
The "Pottering About" Studio located next door to the Children's Shop is a permanent feature for families to enjoy in the Pleasure Gardens. Here children can explore their creative side with arts, crafts and pottery decoration. The Children's Shop and "Pottering About" Studio can be reached by the miniature train which leaves from the Palace every half hour, or on foot which takes approximately 20 minutes.
The Pleasure Gardens Deli
This family oriented deli provides a range of hot and cold snacks as well as dishes for children. Look out for homemade pizza's freshly baked onsite, and salads freshly prepared by our chefs. In the summer months BBQs will be served in the gardens.