Fountains Abbey & Studley Water Gardens

We have seen lots of photos of Fountains Abbey and were keen to get there to explore. As we walked down the path to it the ruined tower came into view.

We stopped for a rest and looked out through the meadow towards the Cellarium (I have used the guide leaflet to get the correct names, they aren’t word normally in a bear’s vocabulary)

The humans decided to do the walk along the water gardens before exploring the ruins. Here we are running through the meadow to join them.

Studley Water Gardens are really beautiful. They were created by John Aislabie in the early 18th Century nearly 300 years ago.

When we had got as far as The Temple of Deity we noticed some weird heads poking out of the water in the lake. The quickest way down to the water’s edge was to roly poly.

There were several statue heads in the water. This one had a garland of flowers around it.

Further along on our walk there was a canoe full of animal statues in the water. Having seen the heads in the water at first we thought that they were replicas of something that had always been there! However, it turned out that they were part of an art trail, Waterlogged, by an organisation called Henshaws. We enjoyed looking at them and thought they were quite quirky.

When bears find a tunnel exploration is necessary, so we made our way through this one.

We eventually emerged into the daylight.

The Serpentine Tunnel led to The Octagon House. Can you see us in the photo?

We went back down to the lakeside path until we reached the Fishing Tabernacle. Fishing used to take place from here, and below the building sluice gates that keep the water in the lakes are hidden.

Walking back towards the Abbey we discovered lots of animal sculptures floating on a raft, which was also part of the ‘Waterlogged’ art trail.

On arriving back at the Abbey we started to explore. The building of Fountains Abbey by monks commenced in 1132, so it has been there a very long time. We climbed up some steps leading from the ruins of The Warming Room.

We could see the Cellarium from the top.

One of the humans took a photo of us from the bottom.

On entering The Cellarium we were amazed by the wonderful ceiling structure.

Legs were getting a tad tired but we managed to find the energy to get to the prison.

We didn’t feel very comfortable in the Prison.

Before leaving we had a look inside The Tower, which like the rest of the Abbey doesn’t have a roof.

After making our way back up the hill we went in the shop. Instead of buying cake in the cafe we bought ourselves a little pine cone hedgehog each. The hedgehogs are made by a local wood carver, they will remind us of our lovely day spent at Fountains Abbey and Studley Water Gardens.

For more information see https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/fountains-abbey-and-studley-royal-water-garden

Horace the Alresford Bear 22/6/2022

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