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London Map

Hampton Court is very much a palace of two halves, as in 1689 William of Orange and his wife Queen Mary II, the daughter of James II, started to knock down the old Tudor palace built by Cardinal Wolsey and greatly extended by Henry VIII, and replace it with a huge modern palace in the Baroque style designed by Sir Christopher Wren.

Unfortunately for King William (but perhaps fortunately for us) he lost interest in the project when Queen Mary died in 1694. Half of the older palace still, therefore remains, providing as it does a fascinating insight into the transition from the Gothic to the Classical styles.

There are useful audio guides available in the Base Court that help to to make sense of all this, and the myriad his and hers State Rooms

For details of opening times, admission prices etc. please go to the Hampton Court official site, detailed below.