Granted it doesn’t have the grand riverside palaces of west London.
But it’s smaller little known gems offer London kids some of the best ways to step back in time and discover how Londoners used to live.
They’ll all easily accessible by tube or train so you don’t have to drive across London to get to them.
AND they include some of the coolest opportunities to combine a visit to a historic London house with serious outdoor time in London’s biggest forest and oldest marshland.
So here goes, a list of fab historic houses in east London that are perfect for a day out with the kids.
1. Valentine’s Mansion
Valentine’s Mansion is a beautiful historic house in Ilford.
just 5 minutes walk from Gants Hill tube, it’s a lovely place for kids to step back in time.
Kids can dress up in Victorian costumes and explore recreated Victorian & Georgian rooms.
It has stunning gardens which include a canal and grottos and an animal corner with chipmunks.
AND it’s FREE! How good is that!
2. Clissold House
Clissold House is a lovely 18th Centry House in popular Clissold Park in Stoke Newington.
There’s nothing really to see in the house -just a cafe – as mostly used now for weddings.
But there’s plenty of fun stuff in the park.
And it’s easy to get to via the Picadilly line (Arsenal station) AND the three main Overgound lines via Canonbury or Rectory Station. It’s about 15 minutes walk from each to the park.
So could be a good meeting place for people coming from different parts of London.
3. Eastbury Manor House
Eastbury Manor, run by the National Trust, is a historic house in Barking.
It was an Elizabethan merchant’s house, and shows those Elizabethans knew how to live!
There’s loads of family friendly activities.
But the garden to be honest is not very big, so better for younger kids.
Eastbury Manor is just 10 minutes walk from Upney Station on the District Line.
4. Valence House
Medieval Valence House is also in Barking.
It’s Barking local museum and has a small collection of stuff going right back to the Romans.
I find, these little local collections are often real winners with kids as they don’t overwhelm.
It has pretty gardens and is right next to Valence Park which has a playground.
It’s maybe not one to cross London for, but it’s a good east London local to know about.
Not least because it’s FREE.
5. Rainham Hall
Rainham Hall is a lovely Queen Ann family house.
Run by the National Trust, it doesn’t have a permanent display, but loads of kid friendly activities.
Including a fab dig for victory project in the 3 acre gardens.
It’s just a few minutes walk from Rainham station, with direct trains from Fenchurch St.
And you could combine with the fabulous RPSB reserve at Rainham Marsh, by hopping back on the train and going one stop to Purfleet. Where it’s a 10 minute walk by the Thames to the marsh.
6. Queen Elizabeth Hunting Lodge
The Queen Elizabeth Hunting Lodge is another fab historic house to combine with real outdoor fun.
As it’s set on the edge of the stunning Epping Forest.
There’s exhibitions of Tudor History to have a quick look at before you explore the forest.
Just remember the Forest is big. So bikes are good if you want to cover much of it.
The Lodge itself is less than 10 minutes walk from Chingford Station, direct trains from Liverpool St.
So there you go, some really lovely historic houses in East London.
For loads more historic houses across London do check out these other lists …
I would love to hear about your trips. Do pop over to Family Fun London on Facebook and tell me all about them.