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“take the family and visit the past” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hardwick Hall and Gardens

Hardwick Hall and Gardens
Doe Lea, Chesterfield S44 5QT, England
44 1246 850 430
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Ranked #1 of 22 Attractions in Chesterfield
Type: Historic Sites, Gardens, Cultural
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Attraction details
Owner description: Welcome to Hardwick, whose stunning houses and beautiful landscape have been created by a cast of thousands.It was the formidable Bess of Hardwick who first created Hardwick in the late 1500s.In the centuries since then her descendants, farmers, gardeners, builders, decorators, embroiderers and craftsmen of all kinds have contributed and made Hardwick their creation.We want you to explore and enjoy Hardwick and in the process discover the lives, loves and adventures of the creators of Hardwick.Explore the enchanting Elizabethan mansion, take a stroll in our peaceful gardens, enjoy seasonal and locally produced food at our Restaurant, get closer to nature with a walk in the Park and much much more.
Stockport, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
22 attraction reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
“take the family and visit the past”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

This hall and grounds are both worth a visit with the family we all went in September and had a great day out, although you could spend many days wondering around and still something new to see.

Visited September 2013
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585 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Derby, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“hidden treasure”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

Although visible from and within easy reach of the M1 this very historic and lovely building or buildings as the old hall is also there doesn't seem to get the appreciation it deserves.There is plenty to see and takes one back in time .Although not quite as grand as its larger more ornate neighbour belonging with the Devonshire history it is well worth a visit and a walk through the park and or gardens worthwhile and essential to help build up an appetite whether to visit the restaurant or to go to the Hardwick Inn on the way out of the park itself .

Visited June 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Finchampstead
Top Contributor
62 reviews 62 reviews
15 attraction reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“A magnificent testament to Bess of Hardwick”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

What a terrific place.
Full of history but for all comers.
The guides tell of the almost fairy tale rise to power and wealth of a young girl in Elizabethan times.
The building itself is amazing and in incredible condition, and brought to life by the commentary on the audio guides.
Then treat yourself to a walk around the estate, if you have the time and the energy, and visit the fishing lakes. A thoroughly enjoyable day out whatever your age.

Visited August 2013
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Leigh on sea, Essex
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
16 attraction reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“A step back in time”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 30, 2013

Hardwick, home of Bess of Hardwick, one of the wealthiest women in Elizabethan England is full of artifacts collected by the Earls and Dukes of Devonshire since the 1500s. Each room is a delight and the room guides are very knowledgable (as you would expect from the NT). A free introductory talk under the entrance portico was informative and well delivered by the guide.
The gardens, especially the late herbaceous borders in the courtyard were looking very good. A mulberry walk was lined with trees groaning in ripe and very tasty fruit. A favoured fruit of the age it was nice to see them still in existence - even if more recently planted. Orchards and parkland add to the ambiance here. The shop, restaurant and loos are neatly tucked away in the stable block, so do not impinge on the visitor experience.
If you haven't been I can recommend it as a great afternoon out. We stopped by on the way to the Peak district. It broke the journey nicely and made a great start to a brilliant week.

Visited September 2013
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sheffield
Top Contributor
94 reviews 94 reviews
27 attraction reviews
Reviews in 39 cities Reviews in 39 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
“Atmospheric and historically important house”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2013

I have been to Hardwick hall many times over the years and it has seen a great deal of change and renovation over that time.
Recently I took my daughter, her husband and my grandson for a family day out.
You get a sense, leaving the motorway, of separating your self from the noise and rush of the 21st century as you wind your way up and up through tress and fields, even though you know the traffic is not far behind.
The house itself is a bit of a walk from the car park, although there is a little golf buggy contraption that will take you backwards and forwards if you prefer not to walk.
We started in the cafe where we were made welcome and shown to our seats- my daughter is breast feeding her baby, and did so quite comfortably without any issue.
The food is varied and tasty, and we decided to go back before leaving and have tea and cake!
The house is impressive from the outside and the garden which fronts it maintained in an authentic style, but is not too big.
Inside I find the house dark and cold but the reason for this is to preserve the masses of tapestries that line the walls and staircases.
There is a large cloakroom as you enter where buggies are stored (buggies aren't allowed in the house, so take a baby harness) this room also contains an exhibition detailing the history of the house and the woman who built it- so worth a read if you have never heard of Bess of Hardwick!
The walk through the house takes you to the long gallery with its unmissable collection of paintings, many of national importance, and into the apartments which vary in purpose and decoration. I had forgotten how much there is to see and the baby needed another feed before we left! Again, the staff were very helpful and welcoming and the baby was fed in a discreet corner with no fuss.
We returned for a coffee and cake before leaving with as sense that we would come again and probably quite soon!

Visited September 2013
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