I enjoy visiting houses, gardens and buildings of many architectural styles.  Over the years I have written this diary, documented the places that I visited, and created my own resources portal, listing everything from the architectural details that I’ve noted along the way, to the name of the shop where I bought my wallpaper.  It’s my own giant scrapbook, which I’m very happy to share with you.

What started it all?

In 2011, while reading the index of ‘England’s 1000 best houses’  I realised just quite how many houses on Simon’s list I had already visited; but how many more there are worthy of visiting.

simon jenkins

I have taken 1000s of pictures of the places I visit.

In an attempt to remember where we’ve been and capture some of the memories and inspiration of the day, I started recording the trips & my itineraries.

My favourite house to date: Wilton House

My favourite garden(s) to date: Wollerton Old Hall and The Walled Garden at Houghton Hall


Here’s my first post, and one a little while in about what I’d learned along the way


What started as architecture journey has over the last decade developed organically into a deep appreciation also (perhaps more so) of the natural world and gardens; how they compliment and often elevate the architecture of the building that they surround.

You open the gate to a garden as you would open the first page of a new book, with the hope of living a moment of happiness in the discovery of a place, a story a human adventure, a time to dream, away from the bustle of everyday life, dream and escape……a moment outside of time” – THIERRY & MONIQUE DRONET.


You can follow by everyday travels on instagram @visitinghousesandgardens


You can find my favourite pictures on Tumblr

And I try to keep up with the news via Twitter


19 thoughts on “About

  1. Hi Robin,
    Might I have your permission to use the pic of Beaulieu in a book on WW” secret agents infiltrated into Europe. Due acknowledgement will be given of course.
    Bernard O’Connor

  2. Visiting houses & gardens.
    Been doing it for over twenty years and just come across your website Robin.
    Amazing! My wife and I are still novices yet love visiting the many NT offerings, we’ve have recently have joined HHA and on first inspection they seem to offer better value for old giffers like ourselves than the NT?

    Your website is now in my ‘favourites’ and I will return to read your fascinating reports of the places you visit.
    Many Many thanks


  3. Hello, Robin –
    I am an avid fan of white gardens. Do you have any white garden recommendations? I’ve visited Sissinghurst a couple times. Also the white rooms / gardens at Hidcote, Cothay, Tintinhull.

    1. There is a very nice white border at Highclere (of Downton Abbey fame) in the monk’s garden. It’s true – many lovely white gardens. I went through a period of just white and green until the vine weevil killed a lot and this year I’m on blood red and white, which ties indoors and outdoors well because I use red and white inside too. Love your blog too. Such graceful pieces. I’ll keep an eye out for white gardens because we were somewhere recently and I know D was talking to somone about white gardens…I’ll have to ask where it was and get back to you. Could have been Boughton House – think it was, in the inner courtyard in the older part of the house. So serene.

  4. Great idea for a blog! You’ve visited some amazing places – I’ve been inspired to go exploring myself!

  5. Thanks for visiting my website – and do drop by again, like tomorrow when I will be writing about a wonderful house which has been restored.
    I look forward to reading through your own explorations in the days ahead…
    Best wishes,
    The Irish Aesthete

  6. Hello Robin, was looking up pictures of Chelsea Flower Show 2013 “shopfronts” and came across your blog. It is wonderful and thank you for sharing. Have lived in the UK twice in past 13 years (Weybridge and most recently just off Sloane Sq) and just left in Oct for NYC, cannot tell you how much I miss beautiful gardens, flowers, architecture, nature, as living in concrete jungle now. Signed up for your newsletter so looking forward to all of your postings. Love your photography and your writing.
    Warm regards,

      1. Thank you! I have been to many amazing places in Yorkshire, many of them not normally open to the public, but I have not yet managed to get to Brockfield, so you pictures will be a great help!

  7. Sutton Park I have been to; Nunnington not. There is a particularly interesting early 18th cent. view of Buckingham House in the hall at Sutton Park which deserves more careful study, as it is hard to date more closely.

  8. Wonderful! You found me through our mutual study of Italian. I come here and discover we also share a mutual love of old houses and architecture. Added benefit for me, the houses and architecture are English! I am fascinated by all things English. My ancestors came from Scotland and England in the late 1600s and early 1700s. My DNA cries out for all things from “home.” Thanks for finding me!

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