Hampton Court Palace...the first buildings belonged to the Knights Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem, a religious order founded in the early 12th century to protect the Holy Land from the Turks. A 99 year lease is given to Thomas Wolsey who is made Archbishop of York and takes up residence at Hampton Court. Thus begins the history of this incredible place...it was relinquished to Henry VIII in 1528 and again was rebuilt and enlarged and finally finished in 1540.
I have included a picture of the side entrance to the Palace as well as two pictures of the Privy Garden..this was the Kings private garden. It has been retored to its appearance in 1702 when William III completed his great parterre. The lighter stone work is where the King's private rooms were so he could look out the window and see his garden. I took one of the pictures from inside the building looking at the garden.
The other two pictures are of two Pond Gardens and one is mostly roses and palms. This is not all the gardens, by no means!! It is a huge place and as you walk along down to the East Front Gardens and look back you are mesmerized by the size of it...Hampton Court Flower Show is held here every year and it takes up just a small part of the whole garden!
Inside is unbelievable...there are so many rooms to visit, including the Chapel Royal which has been in continuous use for over 450 years. The ceiling in this room is breathtaking - blue with gilding. You can get recorded tours to listen to as you go from room to room..this is a wonderful idea...so you don't miss anything..will do this next time.












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