Days Out: Conkers and star gazing at Fountains Abbey

Allan Green <allan.green@talktalk.net>'Attachments1 Oct (6 days ago)''to yppicture.desk 'Fountains Abbey, photographed by Allan Green, Easingwold.
Allan Green <allan.green@talktalk.net>'Attachments1 Oct (6 days ago)''to yppicture.desk 'Fountains Abbey, photographed by Allan Green, Easingwold.
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Whether the Cistercian monks who founded the ancient abbey played conkers is debatable - at least, there’s nothing to say they didn’t - but that shouldn’t stop you hunting for the finest specimen and then challenging a worthy foe to a dual.

While you are there, why not also view the elegant Georgian water garden and medieval deer park?

For centuries people have been drawn to this inspiring place.

From humble beginnings the magnificent abbey was established by devout monks seeking a simpler existence. The atmospheric ruins that remain are a window into a way of life which shaped the medieval world.

Green lawns stretch down to the riverside, a perfect spot for a picnic. Riverside paths lead to the deer park, home to Red, Fallow and Sika deer and ancient trees; limes, oaks, and sweet chestnuts.

One-of-a-kind, this special place is now recognised as a World Heritage Site. There’s plenty to explore here, including the fashionable, whimsical buildings known as follies, which were often used to delight guests and visitors.

Lights at Fountains Abbey

Lights at Fountains Abbey

And if you are into astronomy, there are even star gazing sessions. Moons, star clusters and all kinds of deep sky objects are waiting to be spotted by you. Test out your telescope skills and unlock the secrets of the night sky with a helping hand from York Astronomical society.

Families can follow a ‘marvellously magical family map’ to create their own journey around the estate.

Lights fantastic at Fountains Abbey

Lights fantastic at Fountains Abbey

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