Le Chic En Rose

Diaries of an independent traveller

I’ve been writing about various walks and gardens in Yorkshire recently – some perennial favourites when I’m back there visiting my UK family (see here, here and here for recent posts).

For some reason I’ve never posted about Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal although I’ve been dozens of times before (apart from a few photos I posted back in 2015 here).

Set in a beautiful location in a valley alongside the River Skell (a tributary of the River Ure),  the ruins of the abbey and the 18th century designed water gardens of Studley Royal have been a World Heritage Site since 1986 and are now owned by the National Trust.




The history of the “Dissolution of the Monasteries” by Henry VIII came about through a series of complicated political and religious machinations in the late 1530s and early 1540s. Sadly Fountains was destroyed in 1539 but, despite the chequered past, the ruins have stood the test of time and remain an imposing and sometimes haunting place to walk round.

Combined with the stunning water gardens of the nearby Studley Royal Park they make a lovely walk especially on a fine day. There is an iconic picture-perfect view of the ruined abbey coming into view as you round the bend approaching from the Studley Royal end of the park.




You can start the walk at either the Fountains Abbey Visitor Centre at the top end of the site or the lower end by the lake at Studley Royal. There is a self-service restaurant serving a wide range of local produce adjacent to the Visitor Centre and a well-stocked National Trust shop nearby too (always a good spot to pick up some gifts and souvenirs!).

For a lighter snack-style meal try the tea rooms at the Studley Royal end or the Mill Cafe by the abbey ruins (formerly the Abbey Tea Rooms). Just note that the pathway from the Visitor Centre leading down to the Abbey, whilst tarmacked, is rather steep and might not be suitable for everyone.

On our recent visit in April we had lunch at the Visitor Centre Restaurant then drove back round to the Studley Royal lake entrance. From there we walked the full loop to and from the Abbey. Prices are fairly steep if you haven’t got a National Trust membership but well worth it.

Here is a pictorial tour!




Restoration of the Studley Royal Gardens is ongoing and we found some interesting information signs along the way including details of the “bosquets” (a landscape design term see here for a more detailed explanation!).




For more information about the history of Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal see the link here to the relevant National Trust website.



For more interesting walks and rambles round the world join Restless Jo and her Monday Walks each week!

Copyright © 2019 Rosemary Thomas Le Chic En Rose. All rights reserved




26 thoughts on “A Spring Walk Round Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal

  1. One of my really favourite places. Thanks for the memory nudge!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re very welcome! Always a lovely visit to Fountains 🙂


  2. restlessjo says:

    One of my favourite places on the Moors, Rosemay. I’ve squeezed it in with tomorrow’s walks. 🙂 🙂 Hope all’s going well?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thanks so much Jo – I’ll just link it now too you’re very kind. Yes all well and will look forward to joining you on your walk tomorrow! I’ll be over soon for a catch up if not tonight definitely tomorrow. Hope all’s well with you! 🙂 🙂


      1. restlessjo says:

        Great thanks! James just phoned to say he’s got engaged to his lady in Barcelona 🤗🎂💕

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh that’s wonderful news Jo! Congratulations all round! xx 🙂 🙂


  3. KerryCan says:

    One of my other blog pals lives in Yorkshire and is a volunteer at Fountains Abbey–I have loved seeing her photos, and yours are wonderful, too! It’s an impressive structure in a beautiful setting.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s so interesting Kerry! Places like Fountains wouldn’t keep going without the volunteers who help out. It’s certainly an impressive structure and the setting is wonderful! 🙂


    2. margaret21 says:

      That’s me, Kerry! (At least I think you mean me). Just off there this morning. What a privilege to be here so often. Next time, RosemayLily2014, be sure to take the path up to the Banqueting House. People often leave it out, and it’s well worth a detour (you might even find me up there….)

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I’ll remember that margaret21 I looked it up and the photos are so pretty! Is it signposted? Always love my outings to Fountains and try and go there each time I’m back visiting my Yorkshire family 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. margaret21 says:

          It is. At the bottom of the hill not far from the Studley entrance. During school summer holidays, and summer weekends, the (small) house is open. If I’m on duty, I’ll give you the low-down. If not, somebody else will.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Thanks Margaret I’ll be sure to pop in next time I’m over maybe next year (we live in Perth Western Australia now!)

            Liked by 1 person

            1. margaret21 says:

              Let me know if you’re planning a trip. I always like meeting blogging pals, however briefly.

              Liked by 1 person

            2. I will certainly do that Margaret! We have tended to come over in the spring and looks like the Banqueting House is only open to the public over the summer months so that is maybe why I’ve never noticed it before!

              Liked by 1 person

            3. margaret21 says:

              Indeed. Easter is usually Day One. Never mind. One day.

              Liked by 1 person

            4. We are sometimes over for Easter! Not sure what is happening in the next 12 months re travel plans as a few things going on so definite decisions have not been made at this stage! Will certainly remember to say hello if over and planning a visit to Fountains! 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautiful, happy memories for me too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s a beautiful place Anabel and I’ve been going there since I was very small! They have done some amazing work to restore the gardens it’s such a lovely place for a walk 🙂


  5. Heyjude says:

    Not a place I have been to, so if I do make it up to Yorkshire next summer then I will have to put it on the list! Looks lovely.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fountains Abbey is lovely Jude and the adjacent gardens at Studley Royal are picturesque. Nearby Ripon is well worth looking round too and has a lovely cathedral 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Heyjude says:

        I must have been to Ripon but many, many years ago.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. It’s a few miles down the road from Fountains. Has some lovely tearooms too 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  6. Lovely images. (Suzanne)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Suzanne it’s a lovely walk! 🙂


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