The most beautiful stately homes and locations around the UK to visit for a Bridgerton-inspired staycation
As season two of Bridgerton returns to our screens, the nation has been fully gripped by Regency fever, with it infiltrating everything from the clothes we wear and the sort of holidays we take. The mammoth Netflix show has been largely credited with saving Bath’s tourism industry after the pandemic, with many of the show’s key scenes filmed in the city, and it’s set to send visitor numbers soaring at numerous stately homes around the country this summer. Here, we’ve rounded-up the must-visit Bridgerton filming locations for a Regency-inspired getaway.
This magnificent 18th century pile in Yorkshire has made starring appearances in several period dramas, most notably standing in for Brideshead in the seminal 1980s adaptation of Evelyn Waugh’s novel. In Bridgerton it’s used as the family seat of the Duke of Hastings, Clyvedon Castle, and the house is well known for its Baroque splendour, adorned with coronets, cherubs, urns and cyphers.
And it’s not just popular with film crews – this is also where Ellie Goulding and Caspar Jopling hosted their 2019 wedding reception. The castle is still home to the Howard family – and has been for over 300 years – but visitors are able to visit for guided houses tours from April – October and strolls around the beautifully manicured gardens all year round.
This Jacobean gem in Hertfordshire is just 21 miles north of London and is steeped in history, having been built by Robert Cecil in the early 17th century. It was in these grounds that Queen Elizabeth I spent much of her childhood, and the house is now home to the 7th Marquess of Salisbury.
As well as its historic connections it’s also a firm silver screen favourite, having appeared in a staggering 70 films and TV series since the 1960s – most recently it stood in as Manderley in Netflix’s adaptation of Rebecca starring Lily James. One of Bridgerton’s grandest party scenes was filmed here and the show also shot in the house’s famous Marble Hall, library and West Garden. The splendid park, garden and woodland walks on the estate are all open from April – September, while you can explore the house itself during the summer months.
This storybook-pretty Tudor manor house in Buckinghamshire’s most southerly village is one of England’s finest stately homes, as well as being a popular filming location. In the first season of Bridgerton, after Daphne and Simon finally get married, they stop off at a coaching inn en route to their new home where they consummate their marriage – the interiors of Dorney Court stand in for that inn.
You can have your own romantic weekend at the 15th century pile by booking the estate’s picturesque two-bedroom Gale Cottage, which is a short walk from Dorney Lake and the River Thames and is available to rent through Airbnb. As for the house itself, it remains a private family home for the Palmers, but there are several open days held throughout the year for visitors.
When it came to finding somewhere to stand in for Queen Charlotte’s opulent throne room, the Bridgerton team didn’t have to hunt too hard before settling on Wilton House, famed for its ornate Inigo Jones-designed state rooms. With its gilded furnishings, Cavalier D’Arpino-painted ceiling and intricate wall carvings, the Single Cube Room makes for the perfect regal backdrop.
The house itself was originally built on the site of a 9th century nunnery, before being redesigned in the grand Palladian style in 1647. Set in 21 acres of landscaped parkland, with a Japanese Water Garden and fragrant rose displays beside the River Nadder, it’s a bucolic idyll in the heart of the Wiltshire countryside. The best times to visit are between the end of April and early September, when the house and grounds are open to visitors and the gardens are at their very best.
Just like fellow mammoth Netflix hit The Crown, Bridgerton has used the impressive exterior of Somerley House in Hampshire to stand in as a backdrop for several scenes, including using the grounds to recreate Regency-era Hampstead Heath. They’re not alone in recognising its prime filming possibilities – it was also used in the 1983 adaptation of Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park, as well as in Liz Hurley’s American primetime soap The Royals.
The house was designed by renowned English architect Samuel Wyatt in the late 1700s and is filled with treasures, from Chippendale furniture and pieces from the Palace of Versailles to paintings by Gainsborough, Rubens and Canaletto, which are displayed in the striking 90ft Picture Gallery. Now home to the Earl and Countess of Normanton, there are two places to stay on the estate: the cosy Old Salmon Hut, a Victorian fishing lodge with views over the River Avon, and the wisteria-clad red brick farmhouse, which sits on the edge of the New Forest.
First created in the 18th century as “a living painting”, Painshill is one of the finest remaining examples of the English Landscape Movement and is one of the few real-life locations referred to in the show, with the Featheringtons visiting the lush parkland in season one. It was just as popular with other notable visitors during the era, including US President Thomas Jefferson and Prince Franz of Anhalt-Dessau.
Originally conceived by Irish aristocrat Charles Hamilton, the Surrey attraction still draws its fair share of day trippers from London, who come to explore the park’s many attractions, from its Crystal Grotto and Ruined Abbey to the Gothic Temple and the Serpentine Lake. It’s also a wonderful place to spot spring flowers, whether you’re on the hunt for daffodils and wild garlic in March or bluebells in April and May.
While Bridgerton may be set in London, Bath features heavily in the show, thanks to its many splendid examples of Regency architecture. You’ll spot several of the city’s most famous locations in the show, including the Royal Crescent, the striking curved row of terraced houses designed by architect John Wood, which stands in for the exterior of the Bridgerton family home. It’s also where you’ll find elegant five-star hotel The Royal Crescent Hotel, which is a particular favourite with visitors looking to stay in the heart of the action.
Other key locations include the Bath Assembly Rooms, which is cleverly combined by the cameras with the 19th century Holburne Museum to become one building: Lady Danbury’s house. Bath Street, famed for its cobbled pavings and colonnades, was also used for several outdoor scenes, as were Trim Street, Beauford Square and Barton Street, while the picturesque Abbey Green stood in for the show’s market square.