Eltham Palace, a grand Tudor residence, makes a worthy detour from nearby Greenwich. As the childhood home of Henry VIII, the medieval palace boasts a fascinating royal history and is best known for its elaborate art deco style interiors, transformed in the 1930s by wealthy businessman Stephen Courtauld.
Visitors to Eltham Palace are whisked back to the 1930s as they explore the domed entrance hall, where the Courtaulds held their glamorous cocktail parties; peek into the opulent gold bathroom and stroll the exquisite orchid and rose gardens. Also open to guests are a series of new rooms, including a map room, a walk-in wardrobe filled with beautiful period clothing, a basement billiard room and a WWII bunker. Traces of the palace’s medieval roots can also be seen, most notably in the glorious wood-beamed Great Hall and the historic moat, crossed by London's oldest working bridge.
Eltham Palace is located in Eltham, about five miles (8 km) southeast of Greenwich. The site is open Sunday through Thursday from 10am to 6pm. Adult admission is £13.60. Multimedia guides are available to visitors and a café, shop, visitor center and children’s playground can also be found on site.