School Visits

Osborne offers a real insight into the private lives of Queen Victoria and her family. Their Isle of Wight home can support learning in many aspects of the curriculum, across numerous subjects.

"Our pupils love visiting Osborne as there’s so much to see and do.  A trip to the house, the gardens, Swiss Cottage and the beach inspire them and enhance their learning."

Sam Sillito

Curriculum links

Support your teaching in the classroom by stepping out of it. A visit to Osborne will help you bring learning to life, covering multiple topics across the curriculum and key stages.

  • KS1 History: Significant historical events, people and places in the locality. Significant changes beyond living memory. The lives of significant individuals in the past
  • KS1 Science: Identify a variety of plants and trees, describe the basic structure of a variety of flowering plants and trees. Identify that most living things live in habitats to which they are suited, identify a variety of plants and animals in their habitats, including microhabitats
  • KS2 History: A local history study. A study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils' chronological knowledge beyond 1066
  • KS2 Science: Working scientifically. Identify and name a variety of living things in the local and wider environment
  • KS2 Art and Design: Use the house and grounds as inspiration for the pupils' own work, create sketch books to record observations 
  • KS3 History: A local history study. Ideas, political power, industry and empire: Britain, 1745-1901
  • KS3 Art and Design: History of art, craft, design and architecture

Free Self-Led Visits

Enjoy a free self-led visit to Osborne and design your day to suit your curriculum needs. Tour the house, including the state rooms and family rooms and marvel at the exotic Durbar room, containing the gifts and paintings given to Queen Victoria as Empress of India. Explore the extensive grounds, including the beach where you can enjoy a pre-booked ‘Royal Tea’ with your pupils and see the Swiss Cottage Museum. 

Due to limitations on capacity inside the main house, booking a time slot to visit is essential. Please request a slot when making your booking. 

Enquire now

Expert-Led Discovery Visits

Sandford Award winner 2021!

Our award-winning expert-led Discovery Visits are interactive and immersive. Best of all, we lead them for you. At just £100 per session per class they have been specifically designed to meet the needs of different groups across the key stages. Discover the exciting world of Victorian explorers through object handling and storytelling, have housekeeper Mrs Smith put your class through their paces as Victorian household staff, or discover the history and geology of the Isle of Wight.



Take the stress out of planning your visit to Osborne and use our downloadable itineraries. Full of activity ideas and timings, they're a useful tool to make sure you get the most out of your visit. Contact our education bookings team to arrange your school trip. 

Find out more

Plan Your Trip

We have a wide range of materials to support your visit and make school trip planning easy. You can find all our site-specific information and tools below, and further information on our what to expect page

Download our free resources to help you make the most out of your visit and create unique learning experiences before, during and after your trip. We also offer free planning visits once you have made a booking, plus a 20% discount on the official English Heritage guidebook for your place of choice.

Once you book your visit you’ll be sent a visit permit, which you’ll need to bring with you on the day.

Visit our bookings page to start planning your trip! 

  • Facilities
    • PARKING: Free car park with accessible parking bays, 50m from admissions centre. Coach parking is 250m from the entrance.
    • TOILETS: Toilets are available at points across the site.
    • SWISS COTTAGE: Available when booked with the Victorian Explorer or Story Mat Discovery Visits.
    • HOUSE: Please request a time slot at the time of your booking.
    • ESTATE GROUNDS: The wide acres of the Osborne estate, including the beach, woodland walk and terraces are all open.
    • LUNCH: You are welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy in the grounds.
    • SHOP: Shop at the admissions centre selling a range of gifts, souvenirs and books. We require you to bring your students in small groups at a time.
    • EDUCATION ROOM: The education room is currently unavailable.
    • BAG STORE: A room has been set aside where the students can store their bags whilst in the house. Otherwise they will need to carry their bags with them.
    • ACCESSIBILITY: There are 12 disabled parking bays located 50 yards from the admissions entrance. Disabled visitors may be set down directly outside admissions entrance. Queen Victoria's Private Apartments are accessible via a lift to the first floor. The Nursery is not accessible. A minibus is available to take wheelchair users to the Swiss Cottage and Queen Victoria's beach. The ground floor of the Swiss Cottage and Museum is accessible to wheelchair users. Gardens and Grounds are accessible using tarmac and impacted gravel paths. The Walled Garden and Swiss Cottage Garden are heavily gravelled and may be difficult for wheelchair users. The Rhododendron Walk is suitable for robust wheelchairs only. Queen Victoria's Beach paths, cafe, Queen Victoria's Bathing Machine and Alcove are all accessible, however there are two steps up to the beach boardwalk. The beach itself is not accessible to wheelchair users.

    Site Map

    Osborne Site Map

  • Hazard Information

    A useful tool to help with your risk assessments.

    You must meet the following ratios for leaders to students on the day of your visit when booking, and if your group is forming smaller groups while at the site:

    • Ages 4-5 (UK Reception) 1 leader for every 4 students (1:4)
    • Ages 5-7 (UK Key Stage 1) 1 leader for every 6 students (1:6)
    • Ages 7-11 (UK Key Stage 2) 1 leader for every 10 students (1:10) and
    • Ages 11-18 (UK Key Stages 3, 4, and 5) 1 leader for every 15 students (1:15)
    • For an adult learning group, consisting of individuals all over the age of 18, there are no ratios but there must be an appointed group leader
    • All ratios outlined above apply to home education groups
    • If your group consists of children aged 3 and/or 4, you must also refer to the Early Years and Foundation Stage Statutory Framework which sets out specific legal requirements for minimum ratios for this age group, to include requirements about the qualifications of the leaders
    • SEND groups must meet the minimum ratios above but may bring any additional leaders as required to adequately support their group
  • Education Site Opening Times

    We offer free self-led education visits during school term time*. From November until March we open exclusively for education groups at selected sites when booking an expert-led Discovery Visit. See our education opening times below for individual site information.

    *Free education visits are not offered on UK public holidays or during the operation of additional fee paying public events at English Heritage sites.

    • April-October: Monday-Sunday 10-5pm. Discovery Visits available Monday-Friday
    • November-March: Monday-Sunday10-4pm. Discovery Visits available Monday-Friday

Learning Resources

  • Osborne Teachers' Resource Pack (KS2-KS3)

    Use the historical information and sources in this pack to learn more about Osborne's story.

  • Osborne Timeline (KS2-KS3)

    Chart the history of Osborne with our timeline. 

  • Osborne Durbar Wing Teachers' Activity Ideas (KS2-KS3)

    Discover the Durbar Wing with our suggested activity ideas designed to support learning before, during and after your visit. 

  • Osborne Activity Trail (KS2)

    Explore the key features of Osborne with our Activity Trail aimed at Key Stage 2.

  • Osborne Activity Trail (KS3)

    Find out more about the key features of Osborne with our Activity Trail designed for Key Stage 3. 

  • Osborne Outdoor Explorers Kit (KS1-KS3)

    Explore Osborne's gardens and grounds with our Outdoor Explorers Kit, featuring historical information, an outdoor trail and suggested activities. 

  • Painting Our Past: The African Diaspora in England Learning Pack (KS1-KS4+)

    Use our learning pack to explore a series of portraits commissioned by English Heritage depicting six historic figures from the African diaspora whose stories have contributed to England’s rich history. 

  • Curators' Collections: Osborne

    Explore objects from the collections at Osborne to learn more about Queen Victoria's seaside home and its connection to national and international events. 

  • Teaching the Victorians

    Use historical information, learning activities and tips from our historians, curators and educational experts to support your teaching of the Victorians.

  • Queen Victoria Make Up Tutorial

    Find out what makeup reveals about Queen Victoria's reign in this tutorial with Makeup Artist Rebecca Butterworth and Fashion Historian Amber Butchart.

  • Fashion Through History: Victorians

    Join Fashion Historian Serena Dyer and Curator Sam Stones as they discuss Victorian fashion at Osborne. 

  • How to Make Victorian Petit Fours Biscuits

    Join Food Historian Dr Annie Gray as she explains how to make Petit Fours (or 'The Small Biscuits with Tea') using a recipe from the brother of Queen Victoria's Head Pastry Cook.

  • Postcard from Osborne

    Take to the skies above Osborne to discover the site and its surroundings.