Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal

Fountains Abbey

North Yorkshire

Route: Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal

Area: North Yorkshire

Date of walk: 15th October 2016

Walkers: Andrew and Gilly

Distance: 6.1 miles

Weather: Mostly overcast

There are three major attractions at Fountains Abbey: the ruins of the Cistercian abbey itself, the beautiful Georgian water garden, and the medieval deer park

We parked at the visitor centre and decided to walk to the deer park first. The rutting season takes place in October and November and now is a good time to visit. We entered into the rolling parkland and within a few minutes had our first sighting of a herd of red deer. As we continued to make our way around the park we had numerous sightings of other herds of red, fallow and sika deer – the park is home to three of the six native species. We didn’t see any rutting behaviour but we could clearly hear the bellowing of red deer stags in the distance

After leaving the deer park we entered the water garden at the lakeside and strolled past the water features before climbing up to Anne Boleyn’s Seat and Surprise View. We then descended through the woodland to visit the abbey, with its well preserved Cistercian remains – the most complete in the country

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