Monday, May 05, 2014

Days out: Waddesdon Manor

We decided to take advantage of having a four day Easter weekend (well, actually mine was a seven day weekend, but the OH only had four days) to have a day out to Waddesdon Manor, up in Buckinghamshire, not far from Aylesbury. We realised it would be really busy so we probably wouldn't get tickets to go in the house by the time we got there, so we stopped off on the way and had an early lunch in Aylesbury.

At Waddesdon they had new, slightly crazy, car parking arrangements - you park on the far end of the park land in a huge mega car park like something on an industrial estate, then queue for a shuttle bus to take you over to the house. It's probably great on a weekday, not so great on a bank holiday weekend when there are a lot of people visiting...

Anyway, we eventually made it over to the house. Which isn't that old, it was only built at the end of the nineteenth century, and has all this towers and turrets all over the place.

I liked the criss-cross ivy they'd got growing up one of the towers.

It must be a bit colder up in Buckinghamshire, as their daffodils were mostly still in bloom (ours were over by the Easter weekend), and formed a spectacular show in front of the house.

This is a bird planted with bedding plants, which I'd seen on Gardeners' World and wanted to see for real. I bet it looks amazing in a couple of months' time!

This ornate structure, believe it or not, is an aviary, where originally exotic birds were kept for pleasure, but which is now an important conservation breeding centre for rare species. Each section is a separate enclosure with birds from different parts of the world inside.

This little chap is very rare indeed. He's a Bali Mynah (also known as a Rothschild Mynah) and, in the wild, this species is hovering not far off extinction.

We got away from the crowds by walking through the woodland, where bluebells were beginning to emerge.

And some beautiful views over the surrounding countryside from the more open park land.

1 comment:

Mary Anne said...

It sounds like a lovely day, Katie! I enjoyed seeing the photos and reading the links, thank you.