Earlier in the month we took a trip to Fountains Abbey in Ripon. The last time we went I was about 8 months pregnant with L so I was looking forward to walking around without a tiny human sitting on my bladder!

We had a perfect day for it. The sun was shining but there was a cool breeze so we didn’t get too hot. Unfortunately we had a bit of a rocky start. We couldn’t all fit in one car and my Dad’s SatNav had taken him to Studley Hall (after speaking with staff in the visitor centre this is apparently common because they are connected so check the signs before you pull in anywhere). There’s also no mobile reception so have allan in place in case you get seperated.

After you pass through the visitor centre and head down the hill towards the Abbey you pass a lovely play park in amongst the trees and some picnic benches. My advice would be to leave the park till the end as an incentive to get the kids round when their legs are tiring at the end of the day.

The walk down to the Abbey is well paved but is VERY steep. Thankfully my pushchair has a brake otherwise we may have gone down a little quicker than intended! And walking back up it at the end is a back breaker with a pushchair! That being said you are rewarded with a beautiful sight.

We stopped on this green for a picnic and it was perfect, plenty of room for the kids to run around and a gorgeous view.

The inside of the ruins are absolutely stunning.

After looking around the ruins you can cross over this beautiful bridge to a little cafe. We left my parents here to have a cup of coffee and went to explore the mill located just behind it. M had great fun ringing the bell.


There were some more ruins to explore on the other side too before heading off to walk along the river.

Just after the bend in the river you can turn off to explore the water gardens. M’s legs were pretty tired by this point though, and although we managed it last time when he was only 5 (and I was 8months pregnant), we decided to give it a miss this time and head over the bridge and back towards the Abbey.

The start of the water gardens. It’s a shame we didn’t get to explore them this time as I remember them as being wonderful. Maybe next time.

The view of the Abbey heading back.

Despite being too tired to manage the water gardens M magically acquired enough energy for a quick 10 minutes in the play park before heading home.

Next time we go we will get there earlier and explore all the ruins first before having our picnic, then the kids will be able to have a rest before heading off along the river. Maybe then I’ll get to visit the water gardens again!

Admission to the Abbey and Water Gardens is £11.80 for adults and £5.90 for children so not a cheep day out if there are a few of you (although National Trust and English Heritage members get in for free), but it is a beautiful place to spend the day with plenty to see and explore. We wouldn’t visit regularly because it’s quite a distance from us but we’ll definitely return next summer.

You can find out more about the Abbey on the National Trust site here.

Have you visited any great National Trust sites lately?

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26 thoughts on “Fountains Abbey in Ripon

  1. What a gorgeous place to visit….It looks like it was the perfect day for your trip x
    Kim Carberry recently posted…An afternoon at the park….My Profile

    Posted on 25 August, 2016 at 7:06 pm
    1. It is a really beautiful place x

      Posted on 25 August, 2016 at 7:27 pm
  2. This looks absolutely lovely, its a shame its not closer to me as I love the idea of the water gardens. We have a national trust property near us but I’ve not had the chance to go and explore it yet, but seeing your post makes me want to go take a look. Thanks for sharing #Sharingthebloglove

    Posted on 25 August, 2016 at 9:16 pm
    1. They do have some stunning properties, let me know if you venture to one x

      Posted on 25 August, 2016 at 10:05 pm
  3. I love this place but haven’t visits for years so thank you for bringing back some lovely memories. It’s an amazing place. Thank you for linking up to #ablogginggoodtime 🎉

    Posted on 26 August, 2016 at 4:27 pm
    1. Happy to help, hope I’ve inspired a good day out for you x

      Posted on 26 August, 2016 at 5:48 pm
  4. Wow! Beautiful pictures!! I am sure the pictures don’t do it justice. Looks like you guys had a fun filled day. Thanks for sharing at #ablogginggoodtime

    Posted on 26 August, 2016 at 4:30 pm
    1. Thank you. You’re right, they really don’t!

      Posted on 26 August, 2016 at 5:48 pm
  5. Wow, I love a ruin and these look absolutely stunning! Gorgeous photos – I love that one of your daughter walking through the inside with all those huge arches. The water gardens look lovely too – definitely worth a return visit to see them properly. I love a National Trust – we got our membership in May this year and I’ve done at least one a week ever since. Thanks so much for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove – we’d love to see you back next week!

    Posted on 26 August, 2016 at 4:49 pm
    1. My parents just joined national trust, it’s definitely worth the money if you’re going to be visiting that many sites. Love the linky, only just discovered it this week but will definitely be back x

      Posted on 26 August, 2016 at 5:50 pm
  6. Looks great! I love your photos x #sharingthebloglove

    Posted on 26 August, 2016 at 8:56 pm
    1. Thank you so much x

      Posted on 26 August, 2016 at 9:03 pm
  7. What a beautiful place and lovely pictures. I love the one of your daughter under all the arches, the young and the old, stunning! I love national trust places, they seem to get it just right for little ones. We always have a good day out. Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove Laura x

    Posted on 28 August, 2016 at 7:39 pm
    1. Thank you. I think we need to start visiting more National Trust places, we had a great day.

      Posted on 28 August, 2016 at 7:42 pm
  8. This looks like a fabulous place for an adventure! wonderful photos #sharingthebloglove

    Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 7:54 am
    1. Thank you, it really is!

      Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 9:04 am
  9. We had a little holiday to Yorkshire a couple of weeks ago and visited here and we loved it. The park was amazing and it was lovely exploring the whole place. It is so tiring though we always end up eating as soon as we get there! Lovely pictures it makes me want to look through mine again. #sharethebloglove

    Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 8:45 am
    1. It’s definitely a day for comfy footwear that’s for sure! Glad you enjoyed it too x

      Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 9:06 am
  10. We’ve never visited Fountains Abbey, even though we live quite close. The photos are lovely! It’s amazing how they “can’t walk a step further” until a playground appears, isn’t it?! Ha! #SharingTheBlogLove
    Lucy At Home recently posted…30 Reasons Why I Love Being A Young MumMy Profile

    Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 9:07 am
    1. It’s amazing how many places you can live near and never visit. I’ve discovered so many this summer despite living around this area most of my life. And yes, tiredness never seems to apply to playgrounds!

      Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 4:43 pm
  11. Ahhh I love fountains Abbey. My parents live really close to there and it’s my favourite place to visit. I too have experienced that horrific hill with a buggy – not much fun!! I also love the deer park – there’s a brilliant walk called the 7 bridges, its become a bit of a boxing day tradition for my family. If you go again and it’s colder I can also recommend the cafe there – they do a fab roast on a sunday! #sharethebloglove

    Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 1:29 pm
    1. That hill is a killer! Thanks for the tip, I’ll look into that walk and the deer park for next time, sounds like a great Boxing Day tradition.

      Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 4:47 pm
  12. I love fountains abbey. Such a magical place. Fab photos! #sharingthebloglove
    topsyturvytribe recently posted…A year ago today…SurgeryMy Profile

    Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 4:24 pm
    1. Thank you, it’s beautiful isn’t it?

      Posted on 1 September, 2016 at 4:48 pm
  13. Wow what a beautiful place to visit! It’s amazing how kids can quickly find the energy to head into a playpark isn’t it?! #sharingthebloglove

    Posted on 4 September, 2016 at 6:52 am
    1. I know, if only they could give us that same burst of energy too!

      Posted on 4 September, 2016 at 7:32 am