Trains to Osborne House
To get the train to Osborne House, you'll need to travel to Southampton Central station and proceed by ferry to the Isle of Wight. Southampton Central station is well connected, with services arriving from London Waterloo, Manchester Piccadilly, Nottingham, Cardiff Central, Poole, Weymouth, Salisbury and Basingstoke. From the station there are regular buses to the ferry port. Cross to East Cowes Ferry Terminal, then take a cab or walk (27 minutes) to Osborne House.
About Osborne House
Osborne House was built between 1845 and 1851 as a residence for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Prince Albert designed it himself in the style of an Italianate palazzo, and the result is a grandly impressive affair, crowned with two belvedere towers and surrounded today by a 354-acre estate. The parterres on the terrace have been restored to their original condition, with elegant formal pathways interspersed with statues. The royal children were kept amused by a Swiss Cottage and a miniature fort complete with redoubts.
The house is divided into four sections: the Pavilion, in which the royals resided; the main wing, containing guest rooms; the household wing, where servants lived and worked; and the Durbar Wing, added to mark Victoria's status as Empress of India. The Durbar Room is lavishly decorated in northern Indian style, complete with a grand peacock overmantel. Queen Victoria died at Osborne House in 1901, and the building was later used as a Naval training college before being fully opened to the public.
Today, visitors can tour the sumptuous state rooms and family rooms, and explore the fascinating gardens and grounds all the way down to Queen Victoria's private beach. Youngsters will be entertained by the 'Childhood at Osborne' exhibition, and kept busy by playgrounds and adventure trails.
Isle of Wight
Monday to Sunday: 10.00 to 17.00
Winter opening times vary.
Check the website for full details.
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