Around every corner was a revelation. Sweeping gardens; tiny rooms containing works of art; a large, paneled dining room; and that strange mixture of light, space and claustrophobic enclosure, which can only be found in an Elizabethan long gallery.
No less eye-opening was the chapel. The Black Death, devastating this area in the 14th century, has cast its long, dark shadow here. Crude frescos on the wall depict the Danse Macabre.
Light dances through the long, high windows, picking out the marble on a more modern tomb. There's an effigy there to the nine year old son of the 8th Duke of Rutland. It was carved by his heart-broken mother, when he died.
Through the chapel, as in so many other places within Haddon Hall, the stone floors were worn in shiny grooves, by the passage of so many feet over so many centuries.
I stared in wonder at the Medieval Great Hall, imagining the scenes which had played out there. Prince Arthur, heir to the throne of Henry VI, must have sat at that fire; so too must have Prince Charles, current heir to the throne. They've both been here.
Upstairs, in one of the many chambers, is a wall autographed by every member of the British royal family to step foot in Haddon Hall. It's protected by perspex, but you can clearly trace each signature.
Yet most of my awe was reserved for those areas occupied by the less privileged individuals. I'd never seen a more perfect, nor complete, Tudor kitchen. I wandered through its antechambers, storerooms, bakery and abattoir - the latter not great for a vegetarian, but fascinating for an historian.