Where is Sandringham? Estate map including Wood Farm cottage - where is Queen Elizabeth II’s Norfolk house

The Queen’s Sandringham estate is located within the civil parish of the same name in north-west Norfolk

The Queen, who is 96 today (21 April), has travelled from Windsor to her Sandringham estate for her birthday celebrations, staying at a residence beloved by her late husband, the Duke of Edinburgh.

After a busy Easter holiday that included visits from the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, the monarch went by helicopter to her Sandringham House on 20 April.

While there, the Queen is staying at the Duke of Edinburgh's cottage Wood Farm, a property she says her late husband "loved" because the "sea was so close."

But where is Sandringham, and can members of the public visit it?

Here is everything you need to know about it.

Where is Sandringham?

(Image: NationalWorld)

The Queen’s Sandringham estate is located within the civil parish of the same name, located in north-west Norfolk.

Sandringham is located 7.5 miles north of King's Lynn, and 37 miles north-west of Norwich, within the Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Sandringham House and its 20,000-acre (31 square mile) estate is a favoured holiday destination of the Queen, and was for several of her predecessors; the village was the birthplace of Diana, Princess of Wales.

The site has been occupied since Elizabethan times, when a large manor house was constructed, later replaced in 1771 by a Georgian mansion.

Queen Elizabeth II cuts a cake to celebrate the start of the Platinum Jubilee during a reception in the Ballroom of Sandringham House on 5 February (Photo: JOE GIDDENS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Sandringham and just under 8,000 acres (13 square miles) of land were sold in 1862 to Albert Edward, Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII, as a country home for him and his future wife, Princess Alexandra of Denmark.

The estate has stayed in the Royal Family ever since, and was passed to Queen Elizabeth II upon the death of her father - King George VI - in 1952.

She spends about two months each winter on the Sandringham Estate, and in 1957, broadcast her first televised Christmas message from the house.

In the 1960s, plans were drawn up to demolish the house and replace it with a modern building, but thankfully, these were not carried out.

Unlike the royal palaces owned by the Crown, such as Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, Sandringham is owned personally by the Queen.

For a map of the estate, head to sandringhamestate.co.uk/attractions/country-park.

What is Wood Farm?

Wood Farm is a five-bedroom cottage located in a secluded part of the Sandringham Estate, overlooking the sea.

From his retirement in 2017, the house was home to Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, who reportedly decorated the walls with his own art, redesigned the kitchen and bedrooms and ran a truffle farm.

When the Queen attended a rare public gathering at Sandringham on the eve of her Platinum Jubilee on 5 February, she commented on the property.

Teresa Thompson, the retired housekeeper of Wood Farm, said after chatting to the Queen that day: “All the royal family love Wood Farm, because it’s out of the way, it’s small, It’s intimate. You haven’t got lots of officials and household, it’s just the close staff.”

The cottage is a much more relaxed area of the estate: staff have been reported to not wear uniforms, and the Queen has even been known to cook and do the dishes while there.

“They literally can relax in the family house,” added Thompson. “It’s wonderful, and I had a wonderful 22 years down there, it was the best time of my life without a doubt.”

Can I visit Sandringham?

The Norwich Gates at Sandringham House (Photo: BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images)

In 1977, to mark her Silver Jubilee, the Queen opened the house and grounds to the public for the first time.

The country park and the visitors' centre are open throughout the year, with the house, gardens and museum open annually between the end of March and the end of October.

For more information on visiting the Sandringham estate, head to sandringhamestate.co.uk.