There is enough here to keep you and little people occupied all day. The main house is splendid although rather bare as a result of considerable works undertaken to treat dry rot, don't let that put you off though, if you are interested in architecture it is quite amazing to see the walls stripped back to the bare stone, you get an appreciation for the restoration that must now take place. The cellars with their stone shelves and steep stairway make you feel sorry for the staff that must have literally climbed ''mountains'' in their day to day work. Not only does your entrance fee get you into the house but also into the gardens which are spectacular. We stopped several times to look at some of the exotic plants there. The gardens are within the quarry used to provide the stone for the house itself so there is an enchanting and almost surreal feel to the surroundings. and then as if this was not enough your entrance fee also allows you entry to Belsay Castle, another astonishing building which you can enter and climb right up to the ramparts - the view of the surrounding countryside is well worth it.
Finally I have to say how lovely the member of staff was that was in the shop where we paid our entrance fee she pointed out things of interest and shared what must be a vast knowledge of the estate. On the day we visited there was an exhibition of ''Austen Clothing'' from various tv adaptations of Auten's books ALSO included in the entrance fee! I cannot recommend this attraction highly enough.
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