Oxfordshire Journals

Blenheim Palace: The Birthplace of Churchill

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A May 2007 trip to Oxfordshire by stomps

Blenheim Palace Photo, Oxfordshire, England More Photos
Quote: Located just outside Oxford in the town of Woodstock, Blenheim offers both groundbreaking architecture and well-designed gardens. Plus, it was the birthplace of Winston Churchill.

Blenheim Palace

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Attraction | "The Blinding Palace Courtyard"

Blenheim Palace Photo, Oxfordshire, England
Quote:
It is my true belief that one does not really know the meaning of "imposing" until he has stood in front of Woodstock's Blenheim Palace. Even compared to castles, this is one of the largest structures I remember seeing in a very long time.When Nanna and I walked in through the east entrance (which leads from the large field used as a parking lot), we were nearly blinded by the off-white gravel coating the ground in front of the palace. No, I am not saying we were blinded by the splendor and opulence of the Palace. I were literally reduced to holding my eyes open because they wouldn't do so on their own, so bright was the off-white pavement coating the courtyard area. So a word of advice: i...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 21, 2007

Blenheim Palace

Woodstock OX20 1PX
+44 (1993) 811091

Blenheim Palace

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Attraction | "The Winston Churchill Exhibition"

Blenheim Palace Photo, Oxfordshire, England
Quote:
"Sir Winston Churchill, arguably the greatest parliamentarian this country has ever seen, was born at Blenheim Palace on the 30th November 1874 at 1.30am. Typical of his later impatience, he had arrived several weeks early. Blenheim may never have been Churchill’s home, for the estate and family title passed to his cousin, the 9th Duke (a lifelong friend always known as ‘Sunny’), but for five years in the 1890’s Churchill was heir presumptive to the dukedom, and it was always where his roots remained." This, from the Blenheim Palace website, is arguably the best way to describe Churchill and his connection with Blenh...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 21, 2007

Blenheim Palace

Woodstock OX20 1PX
+44 (1993) 811091

Blenheim Palace Grounds

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Attraction | "The World Heritage-Listed Palace"

Blenheim Palace Grounds Photo, Oxfordshire, England
Quote:
Many of the UNESCO (United Educational, Scientic, and Cultural Organization) World Heritage-listed sites I have visited across the world have been natural wonders, such as the Great Barrier Reef, or man-made creations like Stonehenge. I do not recall ever having visited a palatial home that has been given the status...that is, until I stepped onto the grounds of Blenheim Palace. One of twenty-six World Heritage sites in the United Kingdom, Blenheim was submitted by the British government for consideration and approved in 1987. That's five years before Fraser Island, the largest sand island in the world and one giant natural wonder, was listed!I didn't understand quite the motivation for listin...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 21, 2007

Blenheim Palace Grounds
Blenheim Palace
Oxfordshire, England

Blenheim Palace

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Attraction | "The Formal Gardens"

Blenheim Palace Photo, Oxfordshire, England
Quote:
After spending about an hour inside the Palace, Nanna and I reemerged into the brilliant sunshine outside. Having walked a fair distance inside, Nanna was a bit tired and went back to the car, while I turned towards the Formal Gardens.The first sections of the Formal Gardens are called the Water Terraces. Sitting in the shadow of the west front of the Palace, the first terrace is an exquisitely designed mix of fountains, small concrete spheres, and tiny, tea green, perfectly trimmed hedges. The fountains were not gargantuan (certainly not along the lines of the Emperor's Fountain at Chatsworth), but instead were elegant, delicately spraying water which sparkled in the sun's rays. It felt very ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 21, 2007

Blenheim Palace

Woodstock OX20 1PX
+44 (1993) 811091

Blenheim Palace

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Attraction | "The Lake & Cascade Walk: The Lake"

Blenheim Palace Photo, Oxfordshire, England
Quote:
The Lake & Cascade Walk is billed as a "walk of one mile or 45 minutes over difficult terrain." Now, perhaps I am a bit jaded about the idea of "difficult" after doing the Three Peaks Challenge, but I do not think the Lake & Cascade Walk qualified as difficult in any sense of the word. Yes, the path is made of dirt and gravel, and yes, there are a few stairs and inclines, but that's about it. It's a nice, calm walk that doesn't involve a lot of effort and didn't even hurt my tender right hip.As I was originally planning on doing the majority of the lake walk and then taking the Duke's Gardens walk, I began my walk by going clockwise around the loop to the Temple of Diana (which I would...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 21, 2007

Blenheim Palace

Woodstock OX20 1PX
+44 (1993) 811091

Blenheim Palace

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Attraction | "The Lake & Cascade Walk: The Cascade"

Blenheim Palace Photo, Oxfordshire, England
Quote:
This entry is a continuation of The Lake & Cascade Walk: The Lake.Perhaps it would have been better to continue my clockwise loop and walk around the lake in the opposite direction, since the views in this direction show a much more sprawling lake and even the towers of Blenheim when you get far enough away; in the other direction, the lake slowly comes to an end. However, this didn't bother me too much--I just spent a lot of time turning around and gazing down the lake!There are plenty of small rest stops in the form of benches along the path if you'd like to have a breather or just enjoy the scenery.Nearing the end of the lake, I found two trees of note. One was a huge, o...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 21, 2007

Blenheim Palace

Woodstock OX20 1PX
+44 (1993) 811091

Blenheim Palace

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Attraction | "The Lake & Cascade Walk: The Arboretum/Rose Garden"

Blenheim Palace Photo, Oxfordshire, England
Quote:
This entry is a continuation of The Lake & Cascade Walk: The Cascade.The bridge across the Cascade leads nowhere; a metal gate at the far end makes sure of this. This is no problem though, since I just wanted to get a good view of the falls. From here, I saw a duck sitting in the midst of the falls, trying to jump from stone to stone. I don't know what exactly the purpose of this was--perhaps he was suicidal, maybe bored, or just adventurous--but it was quite interesting to watch. He would jump to a stone on the cusp of the falls--just where the water began to rage and foam--then stand and stare longingly at the calm waters of the lake before turning around and looking down the River Glyme...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 21, 2007

Blenheim Palace

Woodstock OX20 1PX
+44 (1993) 811091