- Location: East Cowes, Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
- Attraction Type: Royal Residence
- Significance: The best known Victorian Country House in Britain
- Best Time To Visit: Open to the public from spring to autumn. You can also follow the opening time schedule of the Osborne House
- How To Reach: From East Cowes follow the A30211 (York Avenue) for 1 mile. The Osborne House is on the left. It will take you around 3 or 4 minutes by car. Parking is available on site. If you plan to walk from East Cowes, it will take 20-25 minutes
- Nearest Airport: Bembridge Airport
Osborne House, a summer abode and rural retreat are undoubtedly the best known Victorian Country House in Britain. Being one of the most popular attractions on the Isle of Wight, it is now administered by English Heritage. After Queen Victoria’s death in 1901, the royal residence opened to the public for the first time in 1904.
The Osborne House Estate was bought by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert in 1845 when they were looking for a seaside residence for their growing family. This three-story royal seaside villa, overlooking the stunning view of the Solent, on an estate of 342 acres bought from Lady Isabella Blachford became the peaceful, rural retreat of Queen Victoria, Prince Albert, and their family.
Prince Albert took much interest and designed this building with the help of the master builder and architect Thomas Cubitt, who was famous for his work in London. The style of the building shows the passion the Prince had for art and architecture of the Italian Renaissance.
This house became Queen Victoria’s favorite residence, particularly after Prince Albert’s death. This former royal residence became the Palace where Queen Victoria spent most of her holidays. She had spent some of her happiest and memorable times with her family here. The Prince personally oversaw the building, landscaping, and alterations of this beautiful villa and its gardens. Many of the rooms have a very intimate association with the Queen who died here and have been preserved ever since.
These days you can visit Osborne House and look at the rooms that have been restored as they would have looked during Queen Victoria’s time here. You will be mesmerized by Victorian luxury, rich interiors, and elaborate Indian díécor in the Durbar Room. As Osborne was also basically a family home, you will notice the Queen’s bedroom, the nursery rooms, and even royal bathrooms. You get a glimpse into the royal family life. There is a large number of furniture and other belongings either personal to the Queen and her family or given as gifts that show the respect Queen Victoria held across the Empire.
You can also tour around the estate gardens where many of the trees were planted by the Royal Family. At the far end of the grounds is the Swiss Cottage brought in from Switzerland and rebuilt for the royal children to provide a place where they could learn to cook, clean, garden and grow flowers and vegetables. During the tour, your children can also have fun in the play area or enjoy a horse and carriage ride.
When to Visit Osborne House
You need to be aware of the timings when the Osborn House remains open. The details are as follows:
1 April to 30 September – Daily from10am-6pm
1 Oct to 31 October – Daily from 10 am-5 pm (Last admission at 4 pm)
House Tours: 1 November to12 December and 6 Feb to 19 Mar – Sunday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday from10am-2.30pm (guided tours only, through booking system)
Grounds: 1 April to 31 October – Daily 10 am-6 pm. (Last admission 5 pm)
The Osborn House remains closed on 24-26 December and 1 January. However, remember to check the opening hours with the venue before making a visit.
Admission Ticket for visiting Osborn House
for adults – Â£10.00, Children – Â£5.00, Concession – Â£8.00 English Heritage Members – Free, Family Ticket – Â£25.00
Grounds only: Adults – Â£8.40, Concession – Â£7.20, Child – Â£4.20, Family ticket – Â£21.00
For any queries, you call the English Heritage: 01983 200022
Accommodation and Hotels near Osborn House
Some of the hotels where you can stay are The Angel Hotel, Balmer Lawn, Careys Manor Hotel & SenSpa, The Clarence, The Enchanted Manor, The Fish House, Florence House Hotel, Langrish House, The Lord Bute, Millstream Hotel and Restaurant, The Montagu Arms Hotel, Priory Bay Hotel, Rylstone Manor, Thatched Cottage, The Three Lions and many more.