Our pick of historic houses to visit this autumn


See some of the finest historic houses and stately homes in Cornwall this autumn.

Lanhydrock, Bodmin 

Lanhydrock is the perfect country house and estate, which was refurbished in 1881, after a fire, in a high Victorian style. By visiting the house you can experience the two vastly differing sides of Victorian life from the servant’s quarters to the elegant family rooms where the landowner lived. As well as the house you also have the opportunity to take a stroll through the gardens and the rest of the estate.  At the moment they have on a ‘Lanhydrock in the War’ exhibition where you can discover how their fortunes changed during the First World War. It is open throughout autumn.

Trerice, Newquay 

This intimate Elizabethan manor is located near Newquay and is considered a Cornish gem. It remains little changed by the advances in building fashions over the centuries. The renowned stillness and tranquility of Trerice is much prized by visitors making the experience more enjoyable. It is open all Autumn and you have the opportunity to experience unique events, on the 17th October you could have the experience of stargazing and learning more about the night sky from the Kernow stargazers (it is suggested a £2 donation should be made by adults). 

Antony, Torpoint 

Antony house is an 18th century mansion with a unique family history.  It gives visitors the chance to find out more about the history of the house and is believed to be one of the finest surviving Queen Anne buildings in the West Country. This gives visitors the chance to view an amazing collection of portraits including, a famous painting of Charles I during his trial, as well as showcasing period furniture, textiles and tapestries. You can also have a look around the beautiful gardens. You may recognize Antony House as it was captured by director Tim Burton, as a film location for his blockbuster, Alice in Wonderland. It is open throughout autumn, except for every Monday and Friday, with various events taking place such as ‘Glorious Garden Tours’ on the 16th September and 21st October giving visitors the chance to walk and talk with the garden team.

Prideaux Palace, Padstow 

Prideaux Place is set in an endlessly beautiful part of North Cornwall and stands above the pretty old fishing port of Padstow. It is much prized as an Elizabethan manor house with beautiful views across deer park and distant outlines of Roughtor on Bodmin Moor. You can see Italian paintings along with family portrait, photographs, porcelain and antiques as well as Prideaux-Brune memorabilia in the house. It has been the location for many of the films that were based on Rosamund Pilcher’s books. Visitors can get guided tours with the first starting at 1.30pm and the last at 4.00pm. It is open until the 8th October.

Lawrence House, Launceston

Located in Launceston, Lawrence House is a beautiful Georgian town house that was built in 1753; it is now used as a local museum and civic centre. The museum is spread over three floors with exhibits that focus predominantly on local history including Launceston's intriguing association with Australia. There's a toy room where children can play, as well as look. Also during your visit you can see a collection of costumes that date from the eighteenth century through to the 1960s. It is open during autumn but not on weekends.

Cotehele, Saltash 

Cotehele is Tudor house with superb collections, garden, quay and estate. It is decorated with tapestries, arms and armour, pewter, brass and old oak furniture. The interior tour has changed little over the years giving you a glimpse of the Tudor lifestyle. You can also experience the gardens during your visit where in autumn you could see their beautiful orchards, it has a variety of different horticultural delights for you to enjoy throughout autumn.

Godolphin, Helston 

Godolphin is both rich in archaeology and wildlife as it’s an ancient and atmospheric estate with a medieval garden and historic house.  It was one of the most fashionable houses in Cornwall in the 17th century. Now you can soak up the atmosphere of peace and antiquity as you explore this romantic home.  After you have wandered around the house you can visit Godolphin Hill on the southwesterly reaches of the estate where you see some of the best views in Cornwall looking out over St Ives Bay to the north and the famous St Michael’s Mount to the south. As well as exploring the 16th-century garden, which is one of the most important historic gardens in Europe.

Pencarrow, Bodmin 

Pencarrow House and Gardens lies at the foot of a sweeping valley between Bodmin and Wadebridge in Cornwall. The largely Georgian mansion is still owned and occupied by descendants of the family who settled there in the 1500s. In the house you can view a fine collection of paintings including, family portraits by Sir Joshua Reynolds and river-scape views of London by Samuel Scott. To view the house there are guided tours throughout the day taking approximately an hour, starting at 11.15am with the last at 3.00pm. It’s a great day out for families, history enthusiasts, nature and garden lovers, and dogs. It’s open until the 1st October except on Fridays and Saturdays.

Mount Edgcumbe, Torpoint 

Mount Edgcumbe House is the former home of the Earls of Mount Edgcumbe. It is set in Grade I Cornish Gardens within 865 acres Country Park on the Rame Peninsula, South East Cornwall and is one of the regions most popular historic tourist destinations. The house is now beautifully restored to the 18th century style, when visiting you can view the family treasures it holds as well as other features including paintings by Sir Joshua Reynolds, Gerard Edema and William van der Velde, Irish Bronze Age horns, 16th century tapestries and 18th century Chinese and Plymouth porcelain. The House and Earl's Garden is open until Wednesday 30th September 2015. 

Do you know any other great houses to visit in Cornwall this autumn? Let us know by commenting in the box below.