Downton Abbey is the popular British television series that has gripped and captivated audiences in the UK and beyond, following the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family at their Edwardian country estate.
 
The historical drama series’ is known for its spectacular period setting, portraying the fictional Downton Abbey through a variety of stunning locations across the UK. If you’re a fan of the Downton Abbey series, or simply enjoy a day out, you can visit many of the filming locations, to explore the beautiful historic buildings featured in the series for yourself.
 
Read on to discover our list of Downton Abbey filming locations, from country manors and scenic gardens to ancient castles, where many of the most famous scenes in Downton Abbey are set.
 

HIGHCLERE CASTLE, HAMPSHIRE, ENGLAND


Image by Roman Grac at Pixabay.
 
Highclere Castle was used as the set of the fictional Downton Abbey itself. This impressive Victorian castle sits in the heart of Berkshire, and is the off-screen seat of the present-day Earl and Countess of Carnarvon. The show’s creator Julian Fellowes had this stunning castle in mind when imagining the shows grand setting, and with over 1,000 acres of surrounding parkland, there’s plenty to see.

You can take your own trip to Downton Abbey as Highclere Castle is open to the public for visits during the summer. Not only will you have the opportunity to feel like a Downton extra, you can also view artefacts and treasures of the Carnarvon family, including ancient Egyptian relics, works of art and the classic Victorian architecture.
 

BAMPTON, OXFORDSHIRE, ENGLAND


Bampton” by Alison Day is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0.
 
The village in the show is actually set in the village of Bampton, in the picturesque Cotswolds. While the village of Downton is set in Yorkshire in the series, the charming village of Bampton in Oxfordshire is home to a number of recognisable locations that were used for filming.
 
Downton Abbey locations you’ll find in Bampton include the post office, Churchgate House, which is used for Isobel Crawley’s home, Church View which houses the fictional pubs The Grantham Arms and The Dog & Duck, and also St. Mary’s church – one of the key locations for many of Downton’s most dramatic moments. Fans will also find the Bampton Community Archive, which serves as the ‘Downton’ hospital in several episodes, where you can pick up a selection of memorabilia.
 

WEST WYCOMBE PARK, VILLAGE AND HILL


West Wycombe Park. North Front. Buckinghamshire.” By Amanda Slater is licenced under CC BY-SA 2.0.
 
A hidden gem near the village of West Wycombe in Buckinghamshire, the 18th century country house was the on-screen home of Aunt Rosamund played by Samantha Bond. Many episodes revisited the grand home of Aunt Rosamund to showcase the magical home and grounds of the real-life Dashwood family who have owned West Wycombe House for over 300 years. Intended to resemble a Roman Villa inside the main hall, many of the rooms feature hand painted walls and tapestries, making it a unique building to explore on a day trip. Be sure to wander the park and nearby village for a truly special day out. 
 

COGGES MANOR FARM, OXFORDSHIRE, ENGLAND


The House” by Timitrius is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.
 
Yew Tree Farm was one of the quaint countryside locations in the Downton Abbey series’ that takes viewers beyond the luxurious stately homes the show is known for. It actually serves as the home of the Drewe Family – and Lady Edith’s daughter Marigold -  for much of Seasons 4 and 5. Cogges Manor Farm became the set of the farm in 2014 due to its beautifully preserved Cotswold stone buildings. Discover the set for yourself by paying a visit to the working farm, before trying some of the delicious homemade scones produced by the Cogges kitchen.  

INVERARAY CASTLE, ARGYLL AND BUTE, SCOTLAND


Image by Hex_Patrick from Pixabay.
 
Duneagle Castle was the location for Rose Aldridge and her parents, the MacClares, to escape for the weekend in season 3 in the episode ‘A Journey To The Highlands’. The gothic Inveraray Castle in Argyll played the part of Duneagle Castle in the episode, and saw the cast reclining in the castle’s State Dining Room for a grand dinner, as well as fishing and stalking in the castle’s sprawling grounds.
 
As the real-life home to the Duke Of Argyll, the castle boasts beautiful manicured gardens and opulently decorated rooms that hold everything from ceramics and paintings to antiquities. If you’re interested in history and seeing the wild beauty of the Scottish countryside, be sure to pay a visit.
 

LANCASTER HOUSE, ST. JAMES’S, LONDON


The elegant interiors of Lancaster House in London’s West End have been host to a number of fashion and filming events over the years, but they are perhaps most memorable for appearing in Downton Abbey’s Christmas special as the interiors of Buckingham Palace. See the grand room where Lady Rose gave her debutante presentation to the King, and marvel at Lancaster House’s stunning architecture.
 

HORSTED KEYNES STATION, SUSSEX


Bluebell Railway – Horsted Keynes Station” by Ed Webster is licensed under CC BY 2.0.
 
The preserved heritage site Horsted Keynes Station became the regular set of the Downton Railway Station for many significant scenes and plot points within the Downton Abbey universe. From the moment Richard Carlisle proposes to Mary, to the many comings and goings of key characters, the Station remains part of the Bluebell Railway system, which holds the largest collection of Southern steam locomotives. Discover collectables and vintage finds at the Carriage Shop, or hop on board for an authentic Downton-style experience on a working steam train.
 

BASILDON PARK, BERKSHIRE


Basildon Park” by gabriellaksz is licensed under CC BY 2.0.
 
The fictional Downton estate extends far beyond the Abbey itself, as the Georgian Manor Basildon Park in Berkshire provides the set for Grantham House, the location where the Crawley family reside when visiting London.
 
Offering its own daily Downton Abbey tour, the National Trust-owned Basildon Park was lovingly restored by Lord and Lady Iliffe during the 1950s to salvage many of the original fixings. Explore The Octagon Room, which was used as the drawing room for the Crawley family, and the dining room, which became the grand ballroom of the Crawley home. You can even stroll the grounds of Basildon Park where many cast members spent their spare time unwinding in-between takes. 
 

Alnwick Castle, Alnwick, Northumberland



Alnwick Castle starred as the magnificent Brancaster Castle in two Christmas specials of Downton Abbey, which took two weeks to film throughout July and August 2014. The first episode featuring the castle saw the Crawley family attend Lord Sinderby’s shooting party, where a scandal erupts. The State Rooms inside the castle provided a spectacular backdrop for a number of scenes, and the episode highlighted the grounds of the castle and the nearby Hulne Abbey, nestled in the Northumberland countryside.

In 2015, the State Rooms once again were used within the final-ever episode of Downton Abbey setting the scene for an emotional finale. Additional filming also took place in the ramparts of the castle, Bow Alley and St. Michael’s Church Hall nearby, which you can discover for yourself on a visit to Alnwick.
 
We host a daily Alnwick On Location film tour, which lasts between 30 and 45 minutes, and is included with your entry ticket. Join our knowledgeable guides and find out more about Alnwick Castle’s on-screen appearances, including Downton Abbey.

 

Kensington Gardens, London, England


Image by oakley58 from Pixabay.
 
In the 2013 Christmas Special, Cora Crawley’s playboy brother Harold Levinson picnicked in a picturesque park with Madeleine and William Allsopp, Martha Levinson and Dame Maggie Smith’s character Violet Crawley. The setting for this summer picnic was actually Kensington Gardens in London, which has its own royal ties, as it is famously part of Kensington Palace, where Prince Harry and Prince William grew up. If you would like to see Kensington Gardens for yourself, this beautiful green space is conveniently located in the heart of London and also houses Queen Victoria’s memorial to her husband Albert as well as the popular Serpentine Galleries.


 

Swinbrook, Oxfordshire, England


The romance between Lady Sybil and Branson, her chauffeur was quite the scandal on Downton Abbey so their secret meetings needed to be in a place of both escape and great beauty for their secret relationship to blossom. The village of Swinbrook in the naturally beautiful Cotswolds became the filming location for Downton Abbey in Season 2, where The Swan Inn was the secret meeting location for the pair to plan their elopement. You can even book a night in the idyllic Swan Inn for yourself.

 

Criterion Restaurant, Piccadilly, London


Image by David Mark from Pixabay.
 
The Criterion restaurant was a special location for Lady Edith Crawley, as she met publisher Michael Gregson there for dinner, which lead to some notable plot developments for Lady Edith. The restaurant itself can be found facing Piccadilly Circus in the centre of London, and still operates to this day. Admire the unique Art Nouveau-style décor, impressive Marble Hall and ornamental tilework that will transport you back to the Jazz Age, as you enjoy your very own dining experience.

  
 

Lincoln Castle, Lincolnshire, England


Image by MikeTowle from Pixabay.
 
When the character John Bates was imprisoned for the murder of Mr. Green in Season 3, the historic Lincoln Castle in Lincolnshire played the role of the foreboding York prison. The well-preserved castle is home to a number of artefacts including the Lincoln Magna Carta, and even has its own dungeon and battlements.

  

Hoxton Hall, London, England


If you’d like to join in for Lady Mary’s Jazz-infused tea dance, Hoxton Hall is one of the most easily accessible locations to visit for Downton Abbey fans. Providing a night of excitement for Rose, Mary and Matthew in the series, the iconic Victorian music hall in London is still an operating music venue that can be found in Hackney, with performances from many international artists, allowing you to visit all year round.  
 
Plan your way around the Downton Abbey locations, and see for yourself where the exquisite period sets were created, and explore where all the action unfolded.
 
If you’re a Downton Abbey fan and would like to visit any of the shooting locations, start with Alnwick Castle and book your tickets with us today. Book online at least 24 hours in advance and enjoy 10% off the on-the-gate ticket price.