Dunham has a huge car park that is free to National Trust members but there is a fee for none members. Although there are also several entrances to the park that have limited free parking and if you only want to use the park then the whole day can be free.
Being a National Trust property is has the usaual trust restaurant, shop and toilets. I have used the restaurnat in the past but did not use it this time as I had a big meal planned for the evening and did not want to spoil my appotite. The restaurant is usually very popular especially at 12.00 when it first opens with big queues with the queue tapering off a little later. The food is good with seasonal fair but sometimes feels a little expensive for what you get but it is to support the property you have gone to see.
The extensive park lands with deer are great to let the children run around in or to amble through listening to the bird calls and trying to see where they are. There are some areas that are loosley out of bounds protected by a low fence where the trees are not managed and can fall down and hurt people so better to stay out of the marked areas for your own safety.
Dunham Massey has also has a formal garden and house. A charge is made to none National Trust members to visit the house and formal gardens. The house is fascinating and the room guides, the volunteers in the room, are very knowledgeable. You will get the most out of the trip if you do not have children with you as you will be able to go slower and spend more time chatting to the room guides who are always interesting. If it is not possible to go without children then the house does its best to entertain them by having quizzes and search trail as you go around the house.
The formal gardens have two sections. As you walk into the gardens through the gate this is the very formal section with paths winding through the fomal beds but if you go over the bridge you will find wider open speces where once again children can let of steam and run around whilst you look at the flowers. Be careful though as there are sections of water here and there that could pose a danger. None of the water look very deep but it is hard to see as the bottom is quite muddy.
Currently in the formal gardens they have several sculptures to entertain and intreague.
Growing up in Manchester I have seen Dunham change over the years but my favourite room is still the kitchen it has a really wow factor where if you look carefully you can see all the changes from the very early spit roast through the charcole burners to the modern day state of the art range all the feed the big house.