10 Downton Abbey Must-See Locations

High drama meets sumptuous settings: From spectacular Highclere Castle to the rolling hills of Yorkshire, discover the hit British period-drama's must-see locations.

September 23, 2019
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Highclere Castle

Welcome to the real Downton Abbey. Since 1679, this sprawling, 1,000-acre estate in Hampshire, England, has been home to the aristocratic Carnarvon family. Tours of the castle include the gardens and woodlands, as well as the state rooms, such as the library, which is home to nearly 6,000 books.

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Waddesdon Manor

The 12,000-acre estate of Haxby Park in Downton Abbey owes its impressive exterior to Waddesdon Manor. The sprawling country estate in Buckinghamshire, England, was built between 1874 and 1898 for Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild. Downton Abbey’s Mary calls the house large and rather vulgar; we call it rather divine.

Downton Abbey Tours

Leeds, England

Downton Abbey is set in Yorkshire County, with local cities such as Leeds mentioned in the show. The thriving city is home to more than 750,000 people, and can trace its history back to the 5th century, when the Celtic’s Kingdom of Elmet was covered by the forest of "Loidis," the origin of the name Leeds.

Ealing Studio

This West London studio is the oldest continuously operating film studio in the world, according to Guinness World Records. Scenes of the PBS hit show focused on Downton Abbey’s servants’ quarters were shot on Ealing Studio’s 3A and 3B stages.


Many of Downton’s exterior shots have been filmed in the village of Bampton in Oxfordshire, England. Among the sites captured on film is the Church of St. Mary the Virgin (pictured), a local parish church built in the 12th century.

County of Yorkshire

This historic county in Northern England serves as the fictional location for the series. With its gently rolling hills, the countryside has earned the nickname of, “God’s Own County.” That’s no exaggeration; within its borders, the county contains some of the greenest areas in all of England.


Downton Abbey’s characters often talk about this North Yorkshire town. The small, ancient locale, which historians say rests on the site of a former Roman settlement, is home to 4,000 people, and includes a cozy, charming market place with a number of cafes.

Rise Hall in Akenham

Downton Abbey’s gripping World War I scenes were filmed in Suffolk, near the village of Akenham. While you’re touring this stretch of Eastern England, check out the village: home to just 60 residents, with landmarks such as this Georgian building on the site of an ancient manor house.


This city in North Yorkshire, England, was the site of one of the series’ most dramatic moments: John Bates’s trial for the murder of his wife, Vera. Pictured here is a city landmark, York Castle, a fortified complex build up over nine centuries.

Greys Court

Shortly after their wedding, Downton Abbey newlyweds Lady Mary and Matthew Crawley went looking for property. Their search led to this picturesque 16th-century mansion, set amid a sweeping courtyard and gardens in Oxfordshire, England.

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